The Middle Ground

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12/06/2013 at 14:54

Bob – I think quick recoveries are a good thing as long as they don’t compromise your ability to complete the session. Shortening recoveries and/or speeding them up is a good way to progress session.

WJH – Nice times for those reps there. I’d do for 75 sec recoveries next time out and see if you can match your paces.

Duck – Pretty rapid times there. 16 minutes must feel like ages between reps!

Yeah that’s what I meant, I need to keep hitting the shorter reps. Funny thing is last night was the first time since injury I’ve done a rep session of longer than 800s and I have done no tempo running either (although I have raced a fair bit so I guess that covers it). I only did 4 reps last night but they came out around 6.05 average. Over 11 secs a mile down on 10k PB pace but it’s an undulating route I use and it was very windy so the effort level was probably correct.

I'm thinking of focusing on my 5K time. What sessions would you reccommend with that in mind?

12/06/2013 at 14:56
Mr V wrote (see)

Dan – Is it Chester mara you are building towards?

I'm entered for Chester but I think I'll do Leicester the week after now, as my daughter  tells me she'll be starting Uni that day (Dad's taxi is required). I now need to find someone to take my number (it's free to transfer ... but no refunds or deferrals). Don't mind too much so long as I can rescue my £40 ... Chester is my home town but Leciester was my undergrad town, and the race finishes right next to the Uni.

Nice 4  x 1M session ... I did some of those last Autumn and they're good fun. Not sure I'd enjoy WJH's 12x400s though ... or Duck's 2-day track session. Nice work guys.

12/06/2013 at 17:10

Hi all. Apologies for not bothering to read back properly. I've been very busy with coaching and being ill and injured.

Duck, well done on your mile. I was thinking you must be in at least 2:06 shape given your superior speed.

Dan, good to see you running again. Your fitness really doesn't look too bad either.

Mr V, congrats on a decent 10k. I take it you are feeling better in general now. Are you still eating meat? Gluten free?

DT, be careful with that cough. You can do yourself damage running when sick.

Well done on the relay, WJH, and BOB, must work harder:a race without a PB is nothing

Well, I had a bad cold for ten days and my HR/pace ratio on easy runs still sucks despite that being a couple of weeks ago. Strangely I seem to be in OK 800 shape (see below). I also have some weird injury that seems to affect most of the upper left leg. Physio found something wrong with my glute, but I think there's something else to it so will be going back tomorrow. Bad time of year for it to happen.

Duck, I did a very similar session today:

1 x 600(96.2")[11']; 1 x 400(62.9")[15']; 1 x 300(43.4")[11']; 1 x 200(28.4")

The first two reps at 800 pace; the second two at 400 pace. I had aimed to do the first 600 in 94.5", but misjudged it a bit, rather than couldn't physically do it. That damn third section of middle distance races is so hard to judge. That was a bloody hard session - I was actually worried about my health before the 3rd rep!

I was thinking maybe 2:07 based on that - as long as I can get the pacing right.

Another good 800 session I did last week was one I stole from Coe:

2 x (1 x 200[90"]; 1 x 400[180"]; 2 x 200[90"])[10"]

Not as tough as the one above, but I think adding a third set would make it so.

12/06/2013 at 19:29

As Simon says (no pun intended) apologies for not commenting on the read back - too much marking to do tonight!

Mr V I'm no expert but has a large section on sessions for 5k. The Humber Bridge 10k sounds interesting. I will get back to Hull for a race at some point.

Dr Dan I've put a note on our club Facebook page asking if anyone wants a place for Chester.

No running since Sunday (except for 1.5 miles of trail between minibuses after yesterday's abseiling). Legs should be fresh for Dunham now!

13/06/2013 at 00:03

DT - Agree with the other advice re: that cough. I ran fine with the sniffles over the winter, but a cough that went on to my chest stopped me in my tracks.

Dr D - Admirable self restraint borne of experience no doubt. I fear I'd still be too waggly tailed with it all and desperate to push myself ASAP if and when I find myself in your position!

Duck - Good to see you shrugging off the disappointment and getting more stupidly quick training in! And yep, the initial walk recovery worked well tonight - see below.

WJH - 8 reps! I'm some way off being able to bash out that many half miles at 3:05 pace. Same rep length and pace, but rather different focus comparing yours to mine I suspect. Nice session from you last night too - very jealous of your seafront backdrop. Uninspiring laps of a suburban playing field for me again tonight!

Mr V - Absolutely agree re: the recoveries. And that's exactly my plan with this session. Will repeat it every 3 or 4 weeks throughout the summer, as I reckon it's a good 'un for developing my basic speed and fitness, but will also prove a good yardstick in measuring overall progress. At the moment, it's a bit of a hybrid of a vVO2 max session Simon worked out for me (thanks mister!) and a session described by Moraghan in the below thread.

At the moment, it remains a vV02 / speed session for me, but as I (hopefully) improve and jog, then run the recoveries, it should have more relevance as a 5k specific session is my, perhaps rather simplistic, thinking.

Might be worth a proper read through of that thread yourself by the way Mr V, if you're after some inspiration for 5k sessions.

Welcome back, Simon - sorry to hear about the illness and injury. Pretty good session there considering! And hoping I'll be back on the PB trail again soon!

CB - When's Dunham? Thursday nights, so tomorrow, was it? Good luck!

So, tonight's session. Was a bit blustery and damp, and had two of the reps mometarily interrupted by excitable mutts, but apart from that went pretty much to plan. The walk / jog recoveries worked well, and made the whole thing gel more consistently, covering the 0.15 mile (240m) recoveries in an average of just under 1:40 and the 5 x half mile reps came in at 3:02, 3:05, 3:04, 3:05, 3:05, so an average of 6:08 m/m pace. Doing the recoveries by distance rather than by time, also means that the session (reps+intervals) conveniently adds up to almost exactly 5k, which I covered tonight in pretty much bang on 22:00. Hope to see that come down as I maintain the pace of the reps, but increase the pace of the recoveries over time. 22:00 matches what was my 5k PB in early April incidentally!

13/06/2013 at 08:05

Bob you seem to be flying! That's an impressive session.

Dr Dan I've found someone who wants your place at Chester. If you PM me a contact number I'll pass it his way.

13/06/2013 at 14:59

well i disregarded everyones advice and went on a 9.3 mile run at 8 m/m last night and feel like i have been pushed 2 days back in the recovery stakes!!! certain rest day today and will see what the weekend brings!

13/06/2013 at 15:10

Chubby - thanks very much, really appreciate your input!  

Someone had already contacted me via the Chester Mara thread and so I'd started the ball rolling with them ... if it doesn't work out, then I'll get back to you (it's still open for entries but, since I entered early, I paid a few quid less than the current fee so it's perhaps worth your clubmate holding fire).

DT19 ...  REST!!! Hope you recover soon!

13/06/2013 at 19:49

Duck/ Simon - I'm doing a track mile on Monday night. Have you got any tips on how to pace things? Is it best to aim for even pace laps?

14/06/2013 at 08:45

Quiet again!

Dunham Massey 5k last night. Legs felt stiff on warm up, probably due to 5 days not running but doing weird things like carting canoes and small children around!

Was happy with 21:25, a seasons best (just!)

My Garmin is constantly out by around 10-12 secs/mile. Now I know this I can adjust accordingly, so last night I aimed for 7:00 pace on the Garmin, and it brought me home at 6:50 pace!!

14/06/2013 at 09:54

 CB - nice race ... in a  nice place ...and at a nice pace. That's ace.

I've dropped you a line regarding the Chester mara place.

14/06/2013 at 10:34

CB- I am having issues with my garmin in that i cannot trust it at all. Fortunately i normally seem to be at a slightly faster pace than the garmin tells me so its usually a nice surprise in the last half a mile! I have found since summer has kickd in it has worsened. I would assume that this is due to leaf coverage affecting signal maybe??

14/06/2013 at 11:52

DT19 I'm not sure how bad it ws earlier in the year, but I think it's one of the reasons I got hacked off around Feb/March as I was constantly not hitting paces in training. The highest distance it's given me for the 9 5ks I've done this year is 3.06, and the lowest is 3.01. That's 1-3% out every time, at 7 min mile pace that's up to 13 sec/mile! Fun and games.

14/06/2013 at 12:08

I was running a 10k in April and i was aiming for sub 40. At 3k i gave up killing myself as my garmin had my ave speed at 6.40. When i passed the 5k marker i was on something like 20.15 min so decided to get my head back on it as second half was flatter. In the end i came in at 40.25 but my garmin gave my ave pace at someing like .6.36 or 6.38. Really annoying! hen your racing to small margins and relying on them it can make a big difference.

14/06/2013 at 12:35

The first rule of Garmins is to never ever trust the average pace reading! Still surely people just check their times at mile/K markers?

Chubby – Well run, you are slowly getting back to your best.

Simon – Didn’t answer your questions earlier. Yes I’m feeling better and still gluten free and meat eating. No sure whether the meat has made a difference but I’m running well so I’ll stick with it.

14/06/2013 at 13:24

Hi all - great thread (although I haven't read all 24,278 messages, lazy I know  )!

I am currently training for my first 10k in a couple of months and am currently trying not to do too much too soon (tempting as it is) but am very looking for tips which i can begin to incorporate into a training plan for the next 10k I do (probably in october 2013) and also for some kind of base training over the winter. Hopefully I can then try to start reducing my pbs at 5k and 10k over the course of next year.

I have run a 5k in the past (4 years ago) in 25 mins but that was done on basically no training as up until a few weeks ago I never really bothered with going to the gym on more than a very occasional basis.

What time do you think is a realistic one for the 10k? It is in Greenwich Park which I understand includes a couple of hills, so would it be over optimistic for me to hope to do it in 50 mins, having done a good 3 months of training prior to the race?

14/06/2013 at 13:33

One of the nice things about the track is you don't have to worry about Garmins - some people still wear and check them though.

Bob, great session. Crazy to think you're knocking out the same time as a fairly recent ex-PB in interval training.

Mr V, even pacing is definitely the best strategy. Do you have a target time? I think the key thing to remember about 1 mile is that it's middle distance, so you have to get shifting straight from the gun and can't really settle into things in the same way that you would in longer races.

Generally it's the third lap where you lose time. You'll still be fairly fresh for the first and second laps so can pace fairly well, but by the third lap you'll be having to work, and without experience it's difficult to tell what pace you're going. The last lap doesn't really suffer from the same problem because all throughts about pace go out the window and you are generally just running as hard as you can - maybe holding just a little back for the last 150. Basically, if you just worry about getting to 1200 without being absolutely shot, the last lap will take care of itself.

If you get the opportunity it'll be worth doing 4-5 x 200m @ target pace just to tune in. Ideally do it tonight or tomorrow morning if your race is on Monday. And definitely get in a few 100m strides @ goal pace about 10 minutes before the race.

I'm bringin back the WAVA table. Partly because it's difficult to remember people's PBs, and partly because I'm hoping to get my first 80% soon

Calculator here:

79.47% Simon (800, 2:08.8, May)

14/06/2013 at 14:08

Andrew - build up some slow mileage with maybe some strides and a small bit of fartlek built in. Don't worry about any paces until your race. Run your race by feel and get a time. Then you'll have a starting point for some more structured training.

Read the first three posts here for the general thread ethos.

14/06/2013 at 14:31

Simon - Thanks for the tips, I'll definitely try and get that 200 session in beforehand. Target wise I'm optimistically hoping for 4.59 though I suspect I won’t quite manage it.

Andrew - What Chubby says but if you have a parkrun near you, it'll be a good way of judging improvment and then working out what pace to aim for in your 10k.

Calculator here:

79.47% Simon (800, 2:08.8, May)
73.23% MrV (5K, 17:37, June)

14/06/2013 at 14:45

CB - Great to see you pull out another season's best last night - definitely heading in the right direction again nowadays. Keep it going - what's next? And thanks, really pleased with that on Wednesday night. A few seconds per rep quicker than last time (3 weeks ago) and hands on knees for 15 seconds or so at the end of the session before the jog home rather than the previous collapse to the turf! Does emphasise Sunday's below par effort though, and for the first time begins to make me question my long term commitment to the cricket if I want to take the running seriously - and I'm pretty sure I do.

DT - Hope you've finally got the message with that cough now!

Andrew D - Hello! Difficult to say really without any recent race times, or even training times, to use for comparison. You're in a not dissimilar spot to where I was in January/February though, and usual guidelines apply in terms of your training. Steady increases in weekly mileage (no more than 10%) and most of it easy will help you get the most out of yourself in your first 10k. Try to build up one of the runs to go over distance if you can - I added no more than 1/2 mile or so per week to the long run when I was building up.

Simon - Thanks. And yep, got to be a good sign that I'm still moving forward I suppose.  Hate that session while I'm doing it, but it's a great one to look back on afterwards. Congrats on your near 80% WAVA rated 800m. Phenomenal! Think I've read that 80% takes you close to potentially being competitive nationally?

Will update the MG league table below with my 5 mile effort below separate to my usual waffle!

Day off for me today, so just under 10 and a half bright and breezy miles down by the Trent and round the HP rowing lake for me this morning. Mostly easy, though let the pace look after itself and went by effort rather than Garmin. Threw in a few incline efforts and a fast finish over the last half mile or so at target 10k pace (6:45). 8:22 pace overall. Last long one before that 10k target race, with just some long intervals (2 x 2 miles @ target pace) a tempo run (3 miles at LT) and some easy paced shorter runs with a few strides/diagonals to come over the next 10 days before the race. 

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