Friday, October 21, 2011

TRAINING, a few pointers

In following a program or a plan it is still easy to get a few of the fundamentals wrong and perform badly. It doesn't matter if you have a program used by Champions you can still stuff it up!!!

Some people train to hard...
Some people don't train hard enough...
Some people rest to much...
Some people don't rest enough...
Then there are those who just want to run...

So what am I saying? Maybe if I break it down and give you a couple of examples you might understand what I mean:

Where do we start, well how about with a session of 1000's, say 6-10 of them. (don't be scared it's not that bad). First up what are we training for? How about a road race, maybe a Half (not that things would really change for a 10 or marathon (maybe you would run a little more)).
2nd thing is I don't know you, so I can't tell you how fast to run, but what if I said at 5km pace, you would know how fast to run. I haven't run a 5km in some time, but with the time of my last race / TT I can guess what my time should be. (using something like VDot or McMillan Running Calculator)

For today we will call it 20:00 (easy maths). So I would aim at running my 1km reps at 4:00.

If I was to run 6 of them in say 3:50, I would be running to fast and therefore training to hard. I'm not saying you couldn't do a session like that, but it takes more out of you than is needed and you end up 'flat' and not racing as fast as you should. You could end up with tired legs and the weeks to come could suffer. It's not about today, it's about all 6-20 weeks on the program. You don't get anything for winning a training session!!! There will be other session when you can go for it...

OK how about not training hard enough? Doing your session in 4:10 / 4:15? Well it's just going to be to easy and not help you improve. But coach I was running as hard/fast as I could... I bet last week you fell into the training to hard group... and today you would be best for resting.

What is next, To much rest:

Taking the day off...
I'm not talking about taking a day off, I'm talking about the time between reps (the 1km repeats we are doing). So what is to much? and what is the right rest?
Good Question, but with 1000's I wouldn't want to rest for more than 2min (remember we are training for a half). But I might add that I feel 2 min is also a bit to long.... So this is what I try and do: week 1 - 2min rest, week 2 - 90sec rest, week 3 - 75sec rest, week 4 - 60 sec rest!!! (don't worry week 5 is a rest week) Then we start a 2nd cycle of 4 weeks. Now we should be a bit faster and fitter, so our 1000's can be a bit faster... or our rest can be a little shorter.

At this point I must tell you that it's not about doing 1000's week in and week out there are 100s of different session you could be doing.

Now what about those people who don't rest enough? You all know them, always training never taking an easy week, looooong runs very week and they they wonder why they never get faster...
Well they have tired legs!!!


  1. lol I like this!! I always know when my legs need a break because my run times will be all sort of off. Instead of going out and trying "harder" I take a day catch my breath and try again after a full day of rest... what do you know my times are better if not right on target!

  2. Good points!! I tend to fall into the training too hard and not resting enough category. I'm getting better about not training too hard as I learn to pace myself better, but the rest is hard for me - hence the reason I am now injured!

  3. So is a tricky balance...running is the easy part!

  4. Great post. I can think of people who fall into all categories. I think when you're with a group, the easiest mistake is to run the reps too fast and end up with tired legs. So important to follow the prescribed workout!

  5. Love this post. I have learned to embrace the rest day!