RW Forum Six – Sub 2.50 Kier with Parkrunfan

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03/01/2013 at 10:58

Keir - what is the hardest part of marathon training for you ? And hwat do you enjoy most about training ?

03/01/2013 at 11:17

Just found this thread.  All right Keir!

Will be interested to see what you decide on the cycling/running mix.  Which duathlon did you have scheduled?  I'm doing the Dambuster (VLM minus 6 weeks), so I've got no choice but to keep up a reasonable level of cycling fitness, but I would've kept up a good level of activity anyway, because it's served me well coming back into running fitness this year.  Over the next three months, non-XC/race weekends are likely to be a long ride Saturday/long run Sunday (subject to swapping due to weather!), as I've found 50-60mile bike/20 mile run surprisingly manageable (in the lead up to Ballbuster).

The more difficult decisions will be how much quality cycling I try to do mid-week, i.e. threshold efforts on exercise bike/turbo/spinning, and whether I can cope with 2/3 sessions a week on top of the quality marathon sessions.  So that'll be something you don't have to worry about if your sole focus is the marathon.

Cheerful Dave    pirate
03/01/2013 at 12:05

I've found that weekend arrangement works for me too PP, although it's always subject to family commitments!  If I have a 20+ mile run weekend (alternate weeks in the absence of races) then the other day isn't very productive for me as far as running goes anyway, so it's a good day to ride. 

I think Keir had said he'd picked up some niggles cycling though, which is a good reason to cut back!

You're lucky with the scheduling of the qualifiers - the last time I tried, my first attempt was at the Big Cow duathlon, originally scheduled for February but which got moved (due to snow) back to 2 weeks before VLM (or was it 3, I forget).  I missed out there and had to go to the Cambridge duathlon a week after VLM to qualify.

03/01/2013 at 13:20

PRF - I have taken your sessions and put them into my plan. Although I have allocated them to a specific day and day-glow colour on the spreadsheet, without specifiying recovery runs, the essence of the plan is this:

Wk 12:
14m + 11m MLR
12m inc 10m progressive
10k Race - @10k pb pace + w/up + down = 18m LSR

Wk 11:
14m MLR
5m inc 3m @ 10k pace
11m inc 10m progressive
20m LSR

Wk 10:
14m + 15m MLR (1 inc 3m @10k pace)
10m inc 10m progressive
Fast finish 22m LSR

Wk 9:
15m MLR
12m inc 10m progressive
8m inc 3m @10k pace
33m Ultra - PMP + 90sec

Wk 8:
10+15m MLR
5m inc 3m @10k pace
20m Race - Progressive

Wk 7:
10+14m MLR
10m inc 10m progressive
HM Race - @HMk pb pace + w/up + down = 18m LSR

Wk 6:
2X15m MLR
10m inc 10m progressive
Fast Finish 22m LSR

Wk 5:
15m MLR
10m inc 10m progressive
8m inc 3m @10k pace
26m LSR - PMP +60sec

Wk 4:
15m MLR
10m Race - @10m pb pace + w/up + down = 15m LSR
21m LSR

Wk 3 - 1 = 3 week taper.

Any alterations / comments?

03/01/2013 at 14:10

Keir, Wow! I think you may have 2 to 3 years of running here squashed into 3 months!

Apologies for sticking my nose in unannounced, but are you sure there should be that many races in a build-up?

03/01/2013 at 14:36

Hi CarterUSM (Your 1992 EU tour was the first ever gig I went to at Gloucester Leisure Centre)  . I find thes hardest parts of the marathon training finding the time, especially mid week. 3 years ago, I was running 5m every week morning and a 10m run on Sunday and couldn't imagine how I could possibly squeeze in more than that. But there will be times when I hit double that weekly mileage this campaign. I also need to be cafeful that I don't loose motivation from over-stressing about running, or any other part of my life (job / family / MA / etc). 

The best part is the long run. I get excited thinking about and visualising what route I will take for my LSR and when possible try to explore new lanes or off road paths. I love cycling, but where running beats it is when you see a farm gate and think - I wonder where that goes and go 'off piste'. Hard to do that on a carbon roadbike!

03/01/2013 at 14:42

Brian - I don’t think there is anything wrong with racing plenty as long as the races are controlled efforts. A 20m race used as a progressive or with a block at MP, or a HM @ MP are frequently used with success as long as the runner can stay controlled. Shorter races, XC, parkruns even the odd 10k can replace a tempo run as well. Racing a HM, flat out on the other hand might be asking a lot, but again plenty can do that and still run a decent Marathon.

Looking at the schedule, its good, contains lots of the right ingredients, though some weeks look very tough. Week 7 stands out to me, a 10mile prog tempo + two MLRs and a Half Marathon raced. That’s 23miles at MP or faster in a week + decent mileage around that

03/01/2013 at 14:48

Hi Phil. I wondered where you were!  Your ballbuster was an impressive result - especially for a trackie! I had considered riding it as it was 2 weeks after my autumn target of the Chilham duathlon and I figures I could hold some form, but instead, I literally had my balls busted 4 days beforehand! 

I was 3rd in the Thanet off road duathlon last year and am doing that again in 9 days time. I was also planning to do Maidstone duathlon in March. I was 5th last year and was looking for a similar result this year. However as CD noted, a duathlon is probably as good as a 20m progressive run if all legs are controlled. I know that I won't do this. In last years event the 9.5k opening run was run within seconds of my 10k pb pace, I died a bit on the bike (lack of training) and forced myself round the final run. An all out effort from the gun and I can't imagne this year I would be able to control myself any better.

I think it worked as a god training day and also reignited the TT spark a bit - I managed a low 23min evening 10 and a 1.1.29m TT in the summer - and I also improved to win and get some reasonable results in a few other duathlons throughout the summer. However it was hard, trying to short distance speed in both running and cycling.

Although I was cycling strongly in the autumn, I hurt my knee about 1 month ago and it keeps coming back when I ride for more than 90mins. To be honest, since 'winning' this thread, I have started that rather than trying to split my eggs between a few baskets, I would be better on focusing on the running and just ride occassionally to break it up a bit. 

That said when I refocus on duathlons, a 10 - 12m Sunday run followed by 45m on the bike plus 2xturbo session in the week will be my bike training with a tempo, 1hr hilly and shorter interval run session as well. But it does seem to mean that every day is a training day.

03/01/2013 at 14:52

Hi Brian. Glad you are here (I name checked you on p3)

The only races where I will be 'racing' are the 10k, HM and 10m. I have doen similar before, but I am aware of burning too many matches so I am willing to compromise and also will only 'race' if I feel ready on the day. However I think all of these together would not take as much out of me as say a 20m @ PMP 6 weeks out would, which I know tended to be the old school approach. 

Thanks for the coment on wk 7 YD. I'll continue to review based on feedback. 

03/01/2013 at 18:10

Keir - Thanks for posting that.

A couple of comments:

1. As far as the key sessions are concerned, if you get to April 21st having completed 90% of them then that will constitute a very good campaign. So view it as if you have 3 jokers to play, you wont know when the best time to play them is until the time arrives. You may just feel incredibly tired one day or other things might get in the way.

2. For the 26m LSR you'll probably be better thinking about 8min/mile or a similar pace to your ultra. By the time you get there your running style will be so efficient that it should be a very pleasurable experience. How did the last one feel?

3. I'm intrigued how the sessions go '12m incl 10m progressive' then '11m incl 10m progressive' then '10m incl 10m progressive'. For me they will always tend to be 14 miles consisting of a 4 mile w/u before the actual session.

 

How are the glands etc now? Are you feeling fighting fit?

 

Brian - There is only actually 3 races in there, a 10K, 10 mile and HM. The others are training runs with specific purposes.

03/01/2013 at 19:16

Kei. Schedule looks pretty tough to me. You'll be in great shape if you get through 90 % of it

Two questions

1. What's the story with this 33 mile ultra business ? Is it really wise even if you're doing it super slow. How do you know how your body will react to (presumably) the longest run you've ever done. Is the time for your first ultra REALLY 8 or 9 weeks out from the key race of the season. Do you really need this and a 26 mile LSR

2. Why not just be honest and call these 10 mile progressive runs MLRs with a progressive last two thirds ie there a re a good few weeks where you'll do two or even three MLRs and a LSR. Definitely hardcore

Just my thoughts....

03/01/2013 at 19:28

Fraser - What are your concerns about the ultra and the 26 miler? I dont find distance particularly difficult to recover from, it is only when you bring speed and distance together that recovery rates start to be of concern.

Not that you'd find me in a 33 mile ultra mind but the last build up had 70 miles in 2 days and I felt great a couple of days later.

03/01/2013 at 19:40

PRF - I guess we're all different in recovery etc but it seems a funny thing to take a risk on just on the cusp of the hardest part of the schedule. I forget the reasons for doing that particular ultra then. Why not do one later in the year ? I agree it may not take too much out of Keir in recovery terms but what's the point of it in training gains apart from the psychological ones of making 2 hrs 50 or less on his feet seem like a doddle (but he kind of already knows he can handle that fine). I can see that the 26 miler has it's merits in it's own right though

 

03/01/2013 at 19:47

The ultra was pre planned but there will definitely be physiological benefits from doing it in terms of mitochondria growth etc, the key is just not to do any damage along the way.

It depends on robustness as much as anything else but if Keir does it and ends up missing a session or two in the following week then thats fine, as long as hes still in one piece.

03/01/2013 at 20:32

Wk 9:
15m MLR
12m inc 10m progressive
8m inc 3m @10k pace
33m Ultra - PMP + 90sec

Wk 8:
10+15m MLR
5m inc 3m @10k pace
20m Race - Progressive

Wk 7:
10+14m MLR
10m inc 10m progressive
HM Race - @HMk pb pace + w/up + down = 18m LSR

Wk 6:
2X15m MLR
10m inc 10m progressive
Fast Finish 22m LSR

Wk 5:
15m MLR
10m inc 10m progressive
8m inc 3m @10k pace
26m LSR - PMP +60sec

Wk 4:
15m MLR
10m Race - @10m pb pace + w/up + down = 15m LSR
21m LSR

I would suggest week 6 and week 5 look particularly challenging.  I'd like to see Keir's proposed daily plan (subject of course to alterations due to work / life stress) for those.  How would you see the week following a HMpb paced run fitting in  2 x 15 milers, a 10+ mile progressive run and a 22 mile fast finish long run.

I'm also interested in the terminology of a HM with warm up and cool down being `18m LSR'.  Semantically speaking, what does the S stand for?.

On the other hand, if these constitute a smorgasbord of runs, from which Keir will alternatively nibble, munch or devour as he feels right, then they are a good combination of sessions.

03/01/2013 at 20:41

That is a good question actually, what is the thinking behind two MLRs in week 6 Keir?

I know we said feel free to shuffle things around to fit in best for you but probably just drop one of those altogether?

03/01/2013 at 21:00

First things first.

Thanks for the feedback PRF. Point 1 is a good one. I like the 3 Jokers plan. Point 2 - I ran an actual marathon 6 weeks out from Abingdon. It was a lumpy HM and a flat but lonely 2nd half. I was comfortable all the way and PMP+60sec should have been 7.45s but came in at 7.31m/m. Here are the 5k splits form that run:

Distance Split pace Avg. HR
5.00 4:45 140 (73%)
10.00 4:45 146 (77%)
15.00 4:43 146 (77%)
20.00 4:33 157 (82%)
25.00 4:36 159 (84%)
30.00 4:43 157 (83%)
35.00 4:43 161 (84%)
40.00 4:31 167 (88%)
42.48 4:43 171 (90%)

This is why I planned on PMP+60sec for the 4 week out 26.2m LSR. However with the closer proximity (4 rather than 6 weks out) and also the 10m race 5 days later I am fine with slowing this to PMP+90sec (8m/m).

Point 3 - I hadn't really stressed over the total distance of the Progressive 10milers. I know I can get 11m done in the morning twice per week without too much hassle, but not run more than that on a school day morning. I think when I wrote them down I started being optimistic regarding rolling out of bed 10mins earlier to make the 12, then started getting tired form all the typing - hense the 10!  Realistically, I guess 11 - 12m would be what I could probably do as the total distance, especially early on, but as the sessions develop and I need to be hitting a faster pace from mile 1 then a longer warm up (and earlier alarm bell) will be necessary.

As a point of note, I usually find 1m jog followed by 1m faster with a few strides sufficient as a warm up. Not sure what others tend to do for a warm-up? 

Glands and sore throat come and go - but today and yesterday seem better, so fingers are crossed. LSR tomorrow so it will be interesting to see how I am on Saturday.

03/01/2013 at 21:03

Looking at week 9 I'd be on my knees!

03/01/2013 at 21:06

Keir, from what I see you  have all the right ingredients but seem to want too big a quantities in a small size mixing bowl.  Maybe your mentor would would like to comment on this? 

03/01/2013 at 21:13

Fraser - Thanks for your comments. Point 1 - The ultra was just something which tickled my fancy. No reason at all for doing it really. I just thought something different mid campaign might be interesting. At the time of writing the original plan I had duathlons, cycle training and this Ultra all down. I was planning on the combination making up for my lack of miles last year and as a way to rebuild my endurance along with the previous two months of HADD style easy running. 

I was pleased / surprised / concerned / worried when PRF approved the Ultra - in that I can't bottle it as easily now . In all honesty, I don't need to do it, and maybe it is not the wisest thing to experiment with, but I am pretty confident in my ability to keep the pace under wraps and think that the tme on feet will honestly be beneficial come VLM. 

Point 2 - I basically took PRFs progressive 10milers and slotted them in place of where I had a VO2 max session previously. So for example - week 6 did read:

2x`15m MLR 
VO2max: 9M w/1x2m 4x1M @10K race pace; jog 3min rec
1x18m LSR

I replaced the VO2 with the 10m inc 10m progressive and the 18m with the 22m Fast Finish. 

 

It should start to become apparent that although I sort of know what I am doing, I can be overly optimistic at times. 

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