SmartCoach Pacing

Q&As with Amby Burfoot

181 to 200 of 212 messages
25/05/2009 at 18:57
I tend to do about 10 - 20 seconds either side of my target pace or more usualy I set the virtual partner and then run at a pace that I am comfortable with but keeps me ahead of the little guy.
03/08/2009 at 12:18
Does anyone tell me how to work out what pace I should be aiming for the half marathon at the end of the training programme? I want to run it in about 2hours ish so obviously I can work that out myself, but there is no way on this system of putting in a target like this so I can't tell from the training programme if the programme will actually enable mte to meet this goal?? Sorry if I am just being thick.....when I have trained in the past for races I have just ran a bit futher each time and so I am not used to this more scientific approach! Thanks
14/12/2009 at 16:45
I have used this so many times and it works brilliantly. But now it is harder to find on the website and the print function has gone.
14/12/2009 at 20:20
Yes, you are right!! This reply is 2 years late, but better late than never
16/12/2009 at 06:47

Erm..  I used to like the SmartCoach, but not sure I do anymore since the overall website update. Where is the print-friendly option?

When I try to print out a 16-week training program for my Paris Marathon 2010 preparation, it's all over the place. On page 1 I get the first 10 weeks of the program squeezed over to the left hand side. Pages 2-8 are blank, whilst pages 9 and 10 contain other people's comments. Not exactly what I was after. 

It also takes more mouse-clicks to get to the SmartCoach in the first place now from the main page. 

Can we have a nice printer-friendly version please?

30/12/2009 at 22:11

I've been using smart coach for the last year for my various races.  It has to be said I don't do a lot of races but I have found that with a little tweeking, it has worked really well for me.  I had a couple of injuries, one was related to slacking off on strength training and the other was a fall in the gym, of all places.  I have found the schedules challenging but achievable (most of the time).  I tend to put in effort as hard or hardest. The result was that of the 7 races, of variable distances I did last year, there was only one that I didn't achieve a PB in! 

I think you have to be flexible about things as well, I didn't stick rigidly to the schedule if I wasn't 'feeling it'.  I'm hoping this year I can improve further, I'll keep you posted. 

04/02/2010 at 11:05

This is probably a really stupid question but what the hell.

 When SmartCoach says "800m at 3.47" or whatever, does it mean 800m at 3.47/km pace, or that you should run 800m in 3.47? (which would be approx 4.34/km pace, if my calculations are correct).

I'm assuming the former, but I'm not 100% sure.

04/02/2010 at 11:54

Lovelygirls: Its a bit late and you've probably sussed it yourself now, but if you put your target time in as the most recent time, Smartcoach it works it out nicely on that. 

Nick Stokes 2 & Neil Dryland; The printer friendly option is on the US site:  It has always printed out a lot better than the UK site also.

Sheri 12: I assume you're looking at a speedwork day? If so its 800m IN 3.47mins. 

I use Smartcoach for all my training but I find it has to be tweaked and not taken carte blanche. If i took it as read I'd be really down on myself for not achieving the training times, even though it gets the race results! I recently read in Runners World how research has shown Elite runners all training at the same percentage speeds; about 75% below race speed, 10% at race speed, 12% faster than race speed, and 3% sprinting (or something like that).  It was interesting to see how Speedcoach almost replicates those percentages. 

04/02/2010 at 11:59
With regards to the question about 800m@3.47... I'm pretty sure Smartcoach's key says that that means at 3.47 pace. I don't remember seeing it mentioning to read it differently for a speedwork day. Have I missed something?
04/02/2010 at 12:45
It is 800m in 3.47.
04/02/2010 at 12:47
GSK - the key says "9mi @ 9:11 means "Run 9 miles at 9:11 pace."". It doesn't specify though what "800m@3.47" for speedwork means - obviously it doesn't mean at 3.47 per mile pace! I assumed it meant at 3.47/km pace, but it doesn't explicitly say so, and Grandad in the post above says differently! So I'm still confused...
04/02/2010 at 13:06
Thanks PFS... so it is definitely 800m in 3.47? Or to put it another way, 800m at 4.34/km pace? (Or 7.21 min/mile.)
04/02/2010 at 14:01
Not being an experienced runner, I'd go with what these folks are saying as they seem pretty certain! Certainly makes more sense, anyway.
05/02/2010 at 15:50

Sheri 12. Yes! 

I've copied this from the legend at the bottom of the US site program which I prefer to the UK one (why are they different I ask?!).  It differentiates between pace for the run (2 mi @ 12.00) and time for speedwork (3x800 in 4:00) and spells it out (my highlight in bold).

Easy Run
Dist: 2mi @12:00     Run a total distance of 2 miles at a pace of 12 minutes per mile.

Dist: 5mi, inc Warm; 3x800 in 4:00 w/400 jogs; Cool   Run a total distance of 5 miles. Your run should include:  - a warmup of about 1 mile  - 3 repeats of 800 meters each;  each repeat should take 4 minutes  - a 400-meter recovery jog after each repeat  - a cooldown of about 1 mile 

Note: Warmups and cooldowns are generally 1 mile each. But on some days, you'll need to make them longer to reach the total distance for your run.

Edited: 05/02/2010 at 15:52
05/02/2010 at 16:41

Thanks Grandadnohair! The US version is much clearer. I wonder why the UK one doesn't explain it the same way.

My only issue now is that switching from miles to metres is confusing, as my Garmin will show the distance in one or the other, but not both at the same time. But 800m is very close to 0.5 mile so I'll do it that way. It would be simpler if, given that everything else is in miles, they gave the speedwork in miles too, unless of course you're running on a track or a treadmill... which many of us probably aren't.

05/02/2010 at 17:34
That is what I would do, it seems to work for me. If you find however that you are struggling to keep that steady a pace, then open the parameters up even further otherwise it will drive you up the wall.
06/05/2010 at 22:28


Just a quick question - I've asked Smartcoach to do a couple of plans for 10k and half marathon. The results show 2 easy runs, a long run, and either a tempo or speedwork session each week.

I expected a tempo run, a speedwork session, a long run and a recovery run each week as that's more like what I'm doing now. Am I over training or  should I add some intervals into the smartcoach sessions?

Thanks in advance.

20/05/2010 at 20:24
Has anyone had problems entering the run date on the training programs to be downloaded onto a garmin 305?
20/05/2010 at 22:16
I can't get smart coach to print out as well as it used to.  You used to be able to go to a printer friendly version and it would print out just the schedule without anything else but now I can't do that.  Please tell me what to do.  Many thanks. Vicky Bishop
22/05/2010 at 20:33
I think if you go to the american site at you can get a more printable version.
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