HADD training plan

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01/01/2012 at 13:27

Happy New Year to all!

Hope 2012 brings everything you deserve, and more....

02/01/2012 at 21:52

Thanks for starting this thread, I found out about Hadd from posts on the RW Heart Rate 101 article and have found it very interesting. I've read the document and have read 90% of this thread. I consider myself a beginner runner having only really run on and off for a few years and never keeping up consistent training.At the moment I have a 10K PB of 47mins and am planning on running a marathon at some point this year (aiming for sub 3:40) I love the idea of HADD but am a little confused by a few points for building up the first milage. 

I'd like to start from scratch and build up to the 50mpw. Should I do the HRMAX test before starting?

What times /  HR distance should I run to build up to 50mpw?

Once I am at 50mpw should I then run my first bench test and start offically from Week 1?

 Thanks for all your advice and Happy New Year!


Edited: 02/01/2012 at 21:53
03/01/2012 at 09:07
Hi Robert. You definitely need to know your maximum heart rate as the runs are all based around this and guess work like 220 - age etc are wildly inaccurate. You'll be starting at 70 - 75% of max and it really depends on what you're doing now as to where you start. Somebody WAAAY more knowledgeable will be along soon I'm sure.

I started 4 weeks ago and tho not doing much, hadn't even run at all for 3 months before that, I am already doing weekly mileage that I haven't done since before Paris marathon. All I will say is that patience is needed. Feels like a step back, but I guess that unless we see it through properly, we won't know if it works. Good luck
03/01/2012 at 10:48

Hi Robert and Welcome!

It's not imperative you do the test if you have HR data from your races? If you have for instance got HR average / Max from your 10k, your HRmax could be derived for now.

03/01/2012 at 13:27

Happy New Year fellow Hadd runners.   Back to work today after the Xmas hols, but have managed to get some good training in while I've been off work.

Welcome Robert

03/01/2012 at 17:57

Thanks for the replies - from looking through my last year's log my max seems to be around 185bpm. I'll go out and run the HRMax over the next few days to see what numbers it gives me and report back. 

As for running times building up to 50mpw, should I just run what I am capable of at around 70%? Or should I vary the times each day? At present I could comfortably run 4-5 miles at a steady pace but probably more at 70%.

 Also, just out of interest how does HADD training reflect on your resting heart rate? I've only really trained fast before, aiming to beat my times, and have seen my RHR drop over the months, just wondered which method of training would show better improvements if any. 


03/01/2012 at 19:24

RH, Heres my opinion -

Gradually shift your individual run times up by 5 or 10mins at a time until you get to 90+ on your long run, with a couple of 70+ runs thru the week. Pad out with shorter runs. Don't think about pace or distance, concentrate on time and HR. Keep your runs at a max of 70% till you get up to about 6-7 hours per week. Seems a lot but if you keep to 70% max you should cope fairly easily. Don't rush this early phase, take your time and build gradually. You should be able to make the transition to 6-7 hours per week in 6 weeks max.

03/01/2012 at 19:25
Oh and the RHR will come down, not too quickly at first though.
04/01/2012 at 04:44

Thanks, I'm in no rush - planning on entering a Marathon when I feel I've trained sufficiently for it, Hadd will be ideal for this so I'll keep on ticking away the miles and build from the bottom up.

04/01/2012 at 19:03
Training is going well at the moment, can comfortably hold a sub 9min pace with a average HR in the low 130's, high 120's, which is a big improvment from the 9.15 to 9.30min/mile pace I was setting when I started 6 weeks out. So far, so good.
05/01/2012 at 08:25
SRM, Good progess then, stick at it and reap the rewards. Great to hear some positive feedback.
05/01/2012 at 10:08

Happy New Year Hadd threaders

I've had a frustrating month or so with a relapse of my November cold and a dodgy ankle.

I've done some gentle runs last week and this week is feeling pretty good.  Onwards and upwards.


05/01/2012 at 10:22
Oh yes, the old December "cold" strikes again
07/01/2012 at 18:50
Well i completed my first mini test the other day. The results were surprising. My first mile and a half had me wondering how I was ever going to complete them all. This also turned out about a minute slower than all the runs I'm doing. On my 95% run I thought I would die!! It was quite windy so all in all I can only hope for improvement.

The good news is that my foot and ankle are still no worse Onwards and upwards
07/01/2012 at 23:20
Very interesting reading this... Just wondering would other aerobic exercise count as long as you maintain same rules re heart rate ie cross training? Not for every session but for some.
08/01/2012 at 08:46

Hi Dprovan, welcome.

Yes, for aerobic development. But to improve at running you need to run. If there is a specific reason why you're unable to run the sessions, I would say cross-trainer, bike or rower will give the same slow-twitch adaptations.

Sorry about the abbreviated answer, but I'm meeting people for a run this morning and have only just logged on. I think others will give their opinion too.

08/01/2012 at 11:18
I have noticed my times getting slower this week and in my log all week I seem to have commented on being a bit tired. I have gone from no running for 3 months to 5 times a week for the last 5 weeks and am now running for about 5 hours a week. I think a cut back week is needed and just wondered how much less in time that I should do and if I replaced it with some gentle biking if that would be counter productive re tiredness and running pace.

08/01/2012 at 13:48


 thank you for the reply it is very helpful. I was asking out of interest, sometimes when I am forced to go to the gym I find it very difficuly to do the long runs on the dreadmill so perhaps do 60 minutes on the tradmill before moving to the cross trainer for another 30 or so... But my preference is always to get out on the road.

 I find this training plan fascinating and am very interested in giving it a go. I am training for a marathon (7th May) and plan on using this. I have been running 20-25 miles per week since july so need to up that mileage.

 Went out today and tried to adopt the advice. Unfortunately I still have a very heavy cold and have been unable to run proerly the past 7 days. Therefore the result was that I just could not keep my heart rate in the desired category. My max heart rate is 198 so I was aiming for 150 my average heart rate was 170 for a 10 mile run at a slow 9.50 min mile pace. My average pace for distance would have been a min/mile faster. I am hoping that the heavy cold explains the difficulty in me getting the heart rate down. Has anyone else any experience of cold/illness and this training?

08/01/2012 at 14:27

Sneglen, To go from no running to 5 times a week is a big ask, and it may've been better to start with 3 and gradually increase the time on your feet. That said you have coped, and the fact that you are tired might be down to you running too fast. Certainly have an easy week, with maybe some light gym work, swimming etc. I seem to remember you saying that it was hard for you to stick at 70%? Maybe try and be a bit more focussed when you get back into training, and stick to 70% max. Just limit your running to 2 or 3 times this week, and make it as easy as you can.

Dprovan, A cold will elevate the HR as it is working a little harder anyway trying to fight of the virus and keep the temp down. A rule of thumb is if the cold is above the neck then it is ok to run easy, but if it is below then don't run. If your HRmax is 198, and you are wanting to build time on your feet, then I would aim to stick to 70% max which is ~140. Don't worry about the pace or miles whilst in this building phase, work on time and HR (70%) till you get up to 6-7 hours on your feet per week.

08/01/2012 at 14:30

dprovan- did you notice whether your resting HR was high before you set out too?- if so it's almost certainly due to the cold- I've just gone out for first time after a cold, abut unfortunatley my HRM battery has died, so can't confirm whether I had the same problem..............I have a sneaky feeling I do, though.

Sneglen-are you ill?- or may be just overdoing it?- again checking resting HR might give you a clue. That's a big increase in running, I suspect a rest will help!

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