The Middle Ground

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01/02/2013 at 10:26

Ouch! When is your appointment Mr Viper? I hope its not SF. It can be a long road back from there.

01/02/2013 at 10:33

Interesting link. Manchester 10k made it on, despite it being a mass participation event, but they have an elites race. I was applying my mathematician's mind to the data, which doesn't take into account the size of the field / quality of the field etc. Then I stopped worrying and decided they're all flat and fast!

Interesting that Dewsbury isn't there, but I don't know what the conditions were like there last year.

After the misery of Tues and Wed, I had a lovely gentle club run last night, then did a sans Garmin tempo run this morning (new one arrives by Tues ) - 8 miles with 3 miles at somewhere between 10k and threshold. Much happier now! I'm heading out at lunch for a few (probably very gentle!) miles with some colleagues and 6th formers - should be different.


01/02/2013 at 11:50

Fabulous mileage, folks - 174 for me, which is slightly fewer than last Jan, but I'm starting from a quicker base, and ran some decent miles in November/December so hope I'm on for good things. I've also added in a four-times per week EA Sports Fitness session. Lots of silly running on the spot that may not help much, but considering there's lots of loading times in between the various activities, it does leave me sore in new places, so I hope that will make a difference this year.

01/02/2013 at 12:38

Monster miles Kelly! Agree about the weather, I had one of those couldn’t wait for it to finish runs last night.
I know the road you mean, couldn’t you head up towards Waldridge, or out to Birtley or maybe up to Great Lumley? When I am up North I often run down to Chester le Street from Birtley and tag bits on to make miles up.

Phil - like Simon and Curly suggests I get some very weird HR readings in the cold and wind. I always get very high readings for the first two miles. I have tried all sorts to resolve it, but just have to accept it’s going to happen.
Are you going to declare a target for Sunday?

Simon – nice session.
Not sure if this has ever been discussed, but do you see yourself moving on from MD and progressing up the distances anytime? Do you have a plan, say 2 more years on the track, then 3k-5k focussed, then 5k-10k and so on etc?

Dewsbury is fast CB and conditions were decent last year, just a smaller field so it doesn’t get the numbers of guys under 32 mins that the other races do. It's small but perfectly formed

TOM – what does EA sports involve? I don’t do any cross training other than a little bit of core work at home in front of the telly.

266 miles for me in Jan. That’s a monthly record by well over 50 miles! So I am pretty happy with that. All being well I should beat that in Feb, but not by a lot.  

01/02/2013 at 12:58

CurlySimonYD - I often get the typical duff reading early in the run but this is the first time it's happened late on, i.e. third mile into a tempo effort, so it's not like I wasn't sweaty.  Maybe the chest strap temporarily lost contact when I had to make an emergency manoeuvre to avoid clattering into an old biddy who clearly didn't see my BRIGHT RED running top coming from several hundred yards away on a well-lit residential street.  Yeah, that could've been it. 

Proper rest day today, didn't even walk / bike into work because I didn't fancy it in the rain.  I feckin' hate bus journeys that take longer than walking! 

01/02/2013 at 13:07

266miles! Another monster, well done, YD.

EA Sports has a 9 week plan. I've only ever got to workout 12 of 36 before, but think I'll complete it this time. It tends to alternate a day that's part top half, part lower half with one that gives the upper body a rest, and then throws in some funny sports things too. So there might be lots of running on the spot, chasing people on screen, then mountain climbers (hate them), foot fires and a few press ups, ending with crunches and the like for the core. Then the day after will have more work with the resistance band. All the sports things involve lunges, often sideways, to pretend to save a ball or pass in basketball, or squats and jumps for pretend cycling or mountain boarding. I think some of what's in there is really good at making me put in time to lunge, plank, crunch and tone the upper body. It has motion sensors that seem to know pretty well when you've actually done what it has asked, though I guess the Xbox Kinect one is more sensitive. Tends to leave my glutes and arms the sorest, guess the other muscles I'm using are well covered from the running and don't get as tired. It making me do core work regularly is I think the prime benefit, though, and you've got that covered.

Having a full day off everything today, though.

01/02/2013 at 14:24

Glad you're feeling better, CB.

Phil, I sometimes find that static from the top I'm wearing can interfere, but then that tends to be early in the run as well. I boycotted London buses in about 2005.

YD, I was actually considering 1500/3000 this year, but I want to see what I can manage at 800, and I think I also need to improve my speed to run the best 1500 I can. Long term I will move up through the distances because a) I will start losing speed and b) I want to have a good go at all of them. 1500 is definitely my favourite distance though, I think I'll always keep that in my repertoire.

01/02/2013 at 14:48

TOM - I might have had more reservations about the benefits of exercise using a gaming console if I hadn't experienced an incredible sensation of DOMS after a single bout of boxing on the Wii!  Sounds like useful core work for running, especially since you're standing up and using various planes of motion.  You can't beat Galaga though.  Classic!

YD - Sorry, missed your query back there.  I'm after a PB (33:25) at the very least on Sunday, a V40 prize and, weather permitting, sub-33 would be nice.

01/02/2013 at 15:17

Afternoon! Some great January miles! Won't post mine as I work in kilometres! Or minutes. Making good progress, I feel, and hope to be reassured in a couple of hours when I have my sports massage. Ran for 25 minutes last night, slowly, covering only 3.7k, but  that's fine at this stage. Major issues are weight, weight and weight rather than anything to do with my Achilles. And after a year of almost no exercise my legs are incredibly weak, too. Tuesday saw 18:47...unfortunately for 3k rather than 5. That leaves me another 603 seconds to knock off to run a PB!

Anyway, progress from next Tuesday will be somewhat aleatory*: I go in for the first part of my prostate treatment.

*No work today so have been developing my vocabulary by watching Countdown.

CB:  did you go the nearest park at lunch? May go to watch parkrun there tomorrow, if not too wet, which it probably will be! Or the Abney trail run.

01/02/2013 at 16:22

YD, it's interesting that someone like you with good endurance can run longer races at such high HR %ages. Last time I checked my 10k was about the same as your 10-miler, and 5k was about 95% average.

I've seen anecdotal evidence (don't ask me where from - I can't remember) that runners with stronger endurance can hold higher intensities for longer but I don't know if there's any scientific evidence or basis for it.

Curly - bad news for Magpie! Hope it recovers soon for him.

Simon, nice session. 400 stuff is a bitch to get right. Best way I found to approach it is to try and get a reasonably high cadence (higher than say 800/1500 but not maximal) and keep stride length a bit longer than 800. Difficult to describe, it's best to play around with it (and, dare I say, experiment with in races). 

You will need to improve 400 speed to stave off hitting the glass 1500m ceiling, but it looks like you're going about it. I've been doing 2*5*100 w/walkback which has worked quite well, as well as 6*200 at 'comehome' pace (the pace you'd expect to run the second half of a 400 in). 

2*4*400 today, 60s between reps & 4 mins between sets. Better paced than Wednesday  - 71.7, 71.9, 71.4, 71.2, 70.7, 70.0, 70.1, 69.3. Felt tired but more good running in the bag. 

Didn't make the Proms 3k today as I had to work, but I've been hearing high winds so hopefully no times to threaten my series second place 

Edited: 01/02/2013 at 16:26
01/02/2013 at 16:44

Alehouse – excellent progress and you win the prize for word of the day! Hoping the treatment doesn’t stop you training completely.

TOM – sounds like a good way to get some extra curricular core stuff in. I keep on thinking I would benefit from a weekly Pilates and maybe even a weekly circuit class, but I never get round to doing anything about it.

Simon – thought that was the case. For what its worth, I reckon by going down the route you have, you have a better chance of getting closer to your potential over the long distances later on than you would just hitting long distance training from the off.

Phil – to me, 32:xx has always been a significant number in 10k terms. I think the reason is, that when I first started running the fastest chap at my club was running 32:xx (with the odd 31:xx) and winning local races. So for that reason a 32:xx 10k always stuck with me as some kind of benchmark for ‘fast local’ runners.
Completely arbitrary but hey, if you do it, you will be considered a ‘fast local’ runner by me, what more motivation do you need?!!!!
Oh and I think you have a great shot at it btw.

Interesting comment re: HR Duck. Because I was thinking those numbers were a tad soft. I know BR and Phil have/can run to higher HR percentages that that, and for that reason consider it something for me to work on as I develop.
4:45 - 4:50 (ish) mile pace is nice going for 400s btw.

Like Phil and TOM I am having a day off. If I am tapering for a race on a Sunday, I always have the Friday off with a short jog + strides on Saturday morning.

01/02/2013 at 17:01

CB - It's always a good day on the forum when I'm forced to look up a word!  All the best with the treatment. 

YD - I like it! At the club prize giving I was described as a "good club runner" for my benchmark sub-16 5k.  I might put it to the committee to see if I can be upgraded to a "fast local".    Good luck on Sunday!

I'm not sure where I am with HR at the moment.  I used to regularly clock 180+ for 10k but if I look at last year's races, including XC, most of the averages are in the 170s.  I've got a theory that with all the extra x-training my heart's got stronger relative to my running muscles, so it doesn't work as hard to supply all the blood/oxygen that the leg muscles can utilise for all the effort they can give.  That could be rubbish though.  Will be interesting to see the mara stats in April.

Edited: 01/02/2013 at 17:03
01/02/2013 at 17:18

Cripes, a 32min 10k merely makes you only a fast local runner? The rest of us better give up now

01/02/2013 at 18:26

Phil - I think you meant Alehouse!

Alehouse - Yes, just a few laps of the pond. Our new music teacher is a handy runner, he'd been out for a few miles first, and nicely slowed his pace so i could keep up at a gentle trot!


01/02/2013 at 18:44
D'oh! Sorry guys... Get me to an alehouse. I need ale. (Actually I'm fitting in a curry before that. Quality pre-pre-race day nutrition.)
01/02/2013 at 19:03
Phil: I will only forgive you if you run a pb. So no pressure!
01/02/2013 at 19:06

PP, if you do massively over indulge, you can always pace me round instead

01/02/2013 at 21:40

interesting reading HR and PBs!

My 5k is 15:34 and HR was 190 (93%Max), 10k 32:41 185(90%Max), 10M 52:58 189 (92%Max), 1/2 69:46 189 (92%Max), Marathon 2:29:33 180 (88%Max).

My half is my 'best' performance. What is interesting is that it takes quite a while to get my HR up, even if I have warmed up well but the end average HR seems like it ends up being the same. Weird! I will say though that I have set my 5k and 10k pb whilst in full training so may have had a sligthly supressed HR than if I'd had a nice taper. My 10mile PB was after a mini taper, half was full taper and marathon was obviously also fully tapered into.

Best of luck all at Chichester. I suspect Phil will be beating my PB. Wouldnt be surprised to see you go under 32:30 mate. Smash it.

02/02/2013 at 12:08
Looks promising on the weather front tomorrow. Hopefully the wind will hold off and be good for PB potential. So good luck in particular to PP and Stevie G on your targets! For me personally,I will be happy with sub 41. Good luck to you too Curly (are you targeting a PB? It might be quite close between us?!). Hope you enjoy it too YP...shame you won't be in peak condition with your recent injury to go for it!

Simon - I did indeed mean Tom in my last post with what he had to say in response to me being despondent following last weeks race. Some great speed work going on for you there and with Duck too!

Ratzer - good job last week with Lliswerry. The running top is top quality too. It was a real struggle as I say, there will be no excuses from me if I don't hit my targets tomorrow (colds,cough's, etc). Hope you manage to fit in the mileage you want around your work commitments.

MR Viper - I hope your injury is not serious and that is won't set you back too much particularly with all the base miles you have been running.

Good to hear about the recent training being positive CB and YD your 24 miles plus 3 in the evening really stands out as a monster of days work. And here I am being happy having reached 16 miles for Brighton at this stage (I genuinely am happy at that mind).

Good to see more progress too Alehouse. Those 603 seconds may not be that far away after all (you weren't walking from what i remember when I joined the tread).

Happy with my weeks progress...could end up being the most miles I have ever run in one week with the possibility of reaching close to 40 by the time Chichester is completed tomorrow.
02/02/2013 at 12:48

Phil, that's an interesting thought. Or perhaps,since the peripheral systems used for running are less efficient than they would be had they been trained exclusively, the heart has to work harder. I'm sure the answer is very complex.

Duck, you're right that I do need to sort out 400 speed. I am sure I can run faster - it's as though I have this power that I can't really tap in to and I reckon that's down to technique. That is, I have some strength in the legs, but need to transfer that into a running action. I think short hard hills will help somewhat - which I'm planning to start soon, but I might speak to the sprint coach down the club for some advice.

That's a nice session. I know you're a 4/8 runner now, but it looks as though your endurance is really coming through and you're starting to look in good 1500 shape.

Good mileage, WJH. I think once you start to hit 40+ consistently some real improvements start to show.

YD, I agree those numbers are a bit soft. I've held 92.5% for 10 miles. What's the plan to try and increase that? My current phase of training is focused just on doing the same thing.

My running group is now launched: and I gave out flyers at the parkrun this morning. It was interesting how many people "already had one" despite me only printing them out last night.

Off for XC relays at Wimbledon common now. 4 x 1.8 miles. Should be a good bit of muddy fun.

Edited: 02/02/2013 at 12:49
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