Moraghan Training - Stevie G



  • TippTopTippTop ✭✭✭

    John Doe III - how long should be spent building up mileage? The answer to that is essentially how long is a piece of string. Some people do it quicker than others. Some can never manage higher mileage full stop. The only way to find out is to suck it and see - and bear in mind there is a big difference between doing high mileage and absorbing high mileage. My first 100m week was about 8-9 months after I started running. The key with mileage is to find your sweet spot, not to chase some arbitrary number; i.e. do as much as you can whilst still absorbing and benefiting from it.

    In terms of phase durations, in reverse (as the idea is you work back from the date of your most important race):
    4) Co-ordination/freshening-up - 6 weeks (4.5 weeks/1.5 weeks split - bear in mind that (1.5 week freshening) is more for shorter than marathon distances).
    3) Anaerobic - 6 weeks, though can be as short as 4.
    2) Hills - 4-6 weeks.
    1) Base - as much time as available, though realistically 8 weeks as a minimum. More is better.

    Stevie see - as per above.

    RicF - I'm certainly no expert. I've just been lucky enough to get some time with a wide variety of people who had first-hand interactions with Arthur Lydiard and have tried to glean as much as I can from it. I also, rather luckily, managed to get my hands on a copy of the first book he wrote (1962), which has his original schedule examples before they were watered down later (for example, the original hill phase was 6 days of hills, rather than the 3 days of hills and 3 days of leg speed as above, but he found that most people couldn't handle it). The general comments a lot of those connected with Lydiard have is that there was/is a lot of jealousy, as you have intuited, from people who resented his success and/or got injured from trying to implement a schedule, without understanding the background/reasoning behind it.
    Very interesting Horwill anecdote. I never realised he was previously a high mileage advocate having only come across his writings and insanely tough schedules on the Serpentine website.

    PMJ - given that every event from 800m up is primarily (as in over 50%) aerobic, and taking into account that an individual's aerobic capacity is, essentially, unlimited, whereas an individual's anaerobic capacity is limited, then surely there can be no answer other than distance? And aerobic training is much better 'for us normal people' than anaerobic training. Too much anaerobic training tears down the body. Aerobic builds it up. The stronger your aerobic system is the quicker you can go before you need to even think about invoking an anaerobic requirement.

    Lydiard, over time did change his base schedule to a time based one to account for the fact that a lot of people trying to implement his ideas were not running as fast as his guys. It basically looks like this:

    Monday: 1hr @ 1/2 effort (hilly)
    Tuesday: 1:30 @ 1/4 effort
    Wednesday: 75mins fartlek
    Thursday: 2hrs @ 1/4 effort
    Friday: 1hr @ 3/4 effort
    Saturday: 2:30 @ 1/4 effort
    Sunday: 1:30 @ 1/4 effort

  • Dean, WAVA, McMillian and my favourite, Riegel, all tend to work pretty well over a small range and, in my opinion, that range tends to reflect some combination of your natural ability and training. If you are getting better scores at shorter distances, it may mean you need to work harder at the longer but it also may mean that you are simply better at the shorter and so need to concentrate on those. My gradings are best at the middle road distances, 10k up to 10miles, and those are my best distances: I haven't got the leg speed over the shorter distances and neither the endurance for the longer: so am stuck with 40 to 60 minutes of lactate threshold as my speciality: nice image

    On parkrun, have a cup chasing plan at the moment. There is a new parkrun in the USA where the course record after week 1 was 23:45. I am out there and a mile away in mid July so if the record is still that soft I plan to set not only the course record but also the continent record.

  • TippTopTippTop ✭✭✭

    As my main interest is marathoning I haven't done much more than glance over the anaerobic and co-ordination phases for the other distances, so this link will do a much better job of explaining it than I can -

    It also gives another time-based week sample, slightly different to above, as well as some more background.

    If you're looking at this from a marathoning perspective, the original '62 Run To The Top book has a 12 week schedule (covering anaerobic and conditioning) which is very different to anything in the later publications. For me it tied up some queries I had with the later books, as, whilst looking through the schedules I noticed that for shorter than marathon distances the schedules essentially became very specific, but that wasn't the case for the marathon. In the original book the 12 week marathon schedule starts with an anaerobic bent for the first few weeks, but then becomes very specific, including a couple of weeks that include, back to back (from memory): a 3m time trial (about 10k effort), a 15m @ 3/4 run (i.e. MP or close to), a 6m time trial (about HM effort), an 18m @ 1/2 effort, 6 x 200m (not quite flat out, or 3 x 200m flat out), a long run of 22-28m and an easy 15m.

    It also includes a time trial over the marathon distance 3-4 weeks out (essentially at about MP + 30s) - again, watered down in later phases to 20-22m.

  • RicFRicF ✭✭✭

    ZaTTu, The chapter in the book where that quote came from was written by Harry Wilson, Steve Ovetts coach.

    Here's another gem; Horwills turn, from the same book on the difference in capability between an unfit runner and fit one. 'In a mile race the former will seize up after a first lap of sixty seconds while the latter would not feel distressed until after a third lap reached in, say, 2 mins 55 secs.

    60 seconds for one lap!, unfit!

    I suppose we 'normal people' should make allowances for the era that had an attitude of 'if you can't beat 4 mins for the mile or get close, then sod off'.

  • PhilPubPhilPub ✭✭✭

    TT - Good to see you posting here. I'll be paying a lot more attention to training phases towards the end of the year, when I try and work out how I'm going to approach VLM 2013. Wanna give this one full beans, so fully prepared to sacrifice any other racing objectives to the right training approach. In particular I'm willing to beast myself on more marathon-specific long runs with a bit of quality, rather than just getting the mileage up at a comfortable pace and doing shorter MP efforts separately.

    Stevie G . wrote (see)

     the suspicion that McMillan calculations come out a little cheeky the shorter the distances.


    Yep. I've pointed out elsewhere that even McMillan's predictor itself seemed to change at some point, making the shorter race predictors harder to hit.  My recent HM predicts a 15:45 5k, which I can't even conceive of at the moment.  If I can break 16:00 this year (on the track) I'll be well happy.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    PP, presumably your half pb is around 1:12:48, which gives 5:34 a mile, and that 15:45 gives 5:04 a mile

    30seconds quicker a mile is a lot to ask I'd have though.

    My equivalent is 1:17:53 (5.57) to 16:51 (5:25) The 10k given is 35:00 dead.

    the 10k looks a bit more realistic than the 5k, as it's basically telling me i an take 20secs off both 10k and 5k pbs!  I feel i wasn't too far off hitting that time last summer/autumn, hitting 35:20 in July, and my October attempt being a hot one, in between a 28:05 5miler and 58:24 10miler.

    The 28:05 would give 35:12 10k and 16:57 whereas the

    58:24 would give 34:51 to 16:47

    What do we conclude? it's certainly easier to hold pace going up the distances, than take blocks off going down!

    In the meantime, actually picking a fast 5k might help things!

    Phil, that race sounds a joke, and barely worth your me I've won some bootleg races. A guy from my club still can't forgive me for winning a particularly low quality 5k about 3 years ago, just because there were about 8 U18s in it in the field of 100. Unfortunately for me, the guy in 2nd was 14... a county champion...but 14! image

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    how frustrating..more olympics tickets were released today...100m final, 200m final, all the other finals...needless to say by the time you'd worked out what you wanted and navigated the system they were gone, and then it crashed.


    tv it is then!

  • RicFRicF ✭✭✭

    SG, the oik in my house was actually given a ticket to the athletics, though not the finals. As for low key races, I was at the Tugwood 10k one time when it had what was called the 'Martin Duff family fun run' attached. One of the guys in my club; 5 mile pb 25:38, decided that this was the race to do. It was somewhat unsettling to see this guy of around 30 years of age and clearly of ability warming up and checking out the opposition which consisted of a load of kids and women, pushchairs and dogs. The run started and he gave it the works, 2 miles and barely 10 mins later he came eyeballing into the finish behaving like he had just won Olympic gold. Guys like me removed our club colours in embarrassment but order was returned when an old lady in our club called him a pr..k! So there are low key and beneath the pall.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    imageRic, at both the phrase "tug-wood", and the story.

    If you listened to the guy from my club he'd probably make out i was like that fella! Only difference is that the 5k wasn't billed as a fun run, and I certainly wasn't anywhere near 25mins for 5m!  It was simply another 5k, amongst a schedule of 6 other 5ks I was doing, and I'd done the 10k before.  yes it was about as low key as it gets, but the quality of the 10k wasn't exactly epic, and I'd have come 6th out of 450 in that...

    Someone drew my attention to the fact that the guy who won the 10k was particularly annoyed by my 5k win, and spent days slating me on twitter of all places! 

    It's funny, as i often see this chap at local races, but i always make sure i go up to him say well done on his race and shake his hand. The sheepish look on his face, always makes me smile.image

    Is strangely good for the soul not meeting nastiness with nastiness!

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭

    You up the track today SG?


  • Stevie seeStevie see ✭✭✭

    I won a sports relief mile a few months back. Beat that.image I literally couldn't run slow enough to let anyone else win. Then a load of football lads turned up saying they were going to win so runner pride overwhelmed me. I slid off quickly after crossing the line and giving my medal to a 5yr old spectator from my class. image

    Did 7.5 @ 7:15 pace earlier. Was very hard, tired legs, 3 miles into wind and rain but done... So feet up and FOOTBALL X 2. Sorry didn't mean to shout just excited image

  • DeanR7DeanR7 ✭✭✭

    whilst im far from mustard i havent celebrated a win yet with arms up etc.....i felt like a fraud regards Sale 5m.  Whilst i ran well to win, my time wouldnt have come close to placing in the top 5 let alone winning it in any of the previous yrs so i crossed the line, thanked the officials and shook hands of the next few guys in.   If i had given it the whole usian bolt im sure plenty would have pointed out to me that the race is usually won in times 2mins faster than i just did.

    In fact the only celabration i have done at the line is a small leap and fist pump was at christleton 5k, i was down in 16th but it felt earntimage

    I think its ok to run hard in a fun run or clearly mismatched field but you must treat it such at the line and afterwards. 

    Edit...thanks SS - incredibly i had forgotten about the Euros....thats my evening for tonight and for the next fortnight sorted 

  • RicFRicF ✭✭✭

    SG, How people motivate themselves to train and race takes various forms. My own was just curiosity about how fast I could go, just me and my training, a race, a result. Other guys seemed to have it in for other runners and have any number of targets. The fellow I mentioned in the last post was one of those 'anti personnel' types. When they mention a name and hope that the name is carrying a niggle or is ill so that they can get one over on them you know the best place to be is anywhere else. I remember one particular runner who was the object/target for another guy for the best part of 18 months. Same races, similar times. His name was always mentioned post race. Eventually I had a chat with this targeted runner about his obsessive rival. Had to to laugh when it became apparent that he wasn't even aware of the other guys existence.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    Bus, fraid not... I have done the 6m MP round the track before, but it is a particularly spirit crushing place to do it! My 0.9mile circuit is my favourite place to do it, but as I.m at work I did it on the road today.

    aiming for 6.15-6.20 zone, came out 6.06,6.13,6.15,6.16,6.19,6.15. Very slight down at the start, very slight up near the end. A bit rainy and windy, one of those sessions you have to remind yourself that we all love running!

    Dean, you're at a pace you deserve to celebrate any win you get. I truly wouldn't care that last years win was quicker, as it's this year that's the only relevance.

    I've done enough small races where I've come 2nd and 3rd to know you do well to win any race!

    Stevie, looking forward to the footy for evening run tonight, so will slope off and watch the 5pm, relax a bit, then watch the 7.45 game image

    Ric, i have all manner of motivations for training. Fear, of not being as fit as i used to be...ego, of being fitter than most people, but to be honest once the race is underway you can't be too fussed about specific people you want to beat unless they're very close to you times wise. There's only so much you can hope to make up on someone if you're both fit and well.

    Having said that you do develop little rivalries if you race often. The XC series is one where I have a few. Having beaten one very close rival 5-1 last year, I was 3-0 down this series, and the need to get a 1 on my tally made me force it in the last 1/2mile...glad I did as the next 3 runners were from my own club!

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭

    Not a nice day for running today, so good session that.  I'm at a bit of a loss myself. I had planned to do a double xc session, but I'm on hols this week (was supposed to be camping with the kids but changed my mind!) and couldn't get motivated to get out of bed in the rain and gale this morning! Still have my interval session to do this week, one double and a medium. I was thinking of the track, but might not be much fun in the wind, but then the alternative 9M xc is not hugely attractive at the mo either!  Motivation is proving to be a real pain generally at the moment. Combination of weather and months of fairly similar training over the same old routes and not much change in performance - probably need a break to come back fresh....

  • dean richardson 7 wrote (see)

    whilst im far from mustard i havent celebrated a win yet with arms up etc....

    I have, but I was worried about how tight that tape may be and it looked like a garotte. Note there is nobody else in sight behind  (500+ runners) so really low key but it made me happy.


  • DeanR7DeanR7 ✭✭✭

    PMJ - excellent photo and in fairness if i had triumphed over a 6ft fruit i would celebrate too.  are you sure you didnt spin round 180 degrees and cross the line backwards to make it look like you are miles ahead?image

  • RicFRicF ✭✭✭

    10k race on Sunday. This one should be interesting as it will be off steady/easy mileage without a trace of a session in sight. In the past whatever time I fielded off this sort of training, I could improve with intervals by a minute or so. I fear that now all I'll achieve with intervals is a ripped backside and a few more rest days. 

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    Phil, a win is a win, especially one they put up tape for!!

    Bus, sounds to be like you need a bit more social in your runs...why don't we sort our schedules out, and get a couple of runs a week in together. Then before you know it, a run has flown by and it hasn't felt like work.

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭

    You're probably right Sg - trouble is I tend to fit most of them ina round work. That said, I work at home a fair bit, so should try and get some sorted out  for those like we did before.

    That's a classic phot Philip! One for the album for sure....

    Went up to Handy Cross track tonight. It does make the intervals seem somehow easier on a track, but it was VERY windy! Felt like running in treacle for almost half of each lap, so the times are a bit academic (especially as I could feel Wednesday's long run in my legs still!). 6 x 800 + 4 x 400 with 90 sec walk/jog recovery, came out as:

    2:49, 2:51, 2:48, 2:51, 2:48, 2:51, 1:20, 1:21, 1:20, 1:20

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    When you're working at home, and presuming you're willing to drive down to Kingsmead, as i can't take the mick driving off somewhere then fitting a decent run in (image)  we can no doubt sort a couple of runs out every so often..

    Welcome to the Handy Cross's very very rare not to be windy there, being so high up, and next to motorways! Has a terrific set of woods for any caught short moments tho!

    Those paces look quite good to hold over a good sized session.

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭

    Thanks. The only other session I've done on the track the 800s all came out at sub 2:42 for a similar set (though I may have just run faster I guess!). It is exposed up there, but there's wind and there's wind - down the straight nearest the pool and into the bend it felt like I was running up Marlow Hill dragging a tyreimage   I needed to use those trees early on myself tonight!

    No reason why we couldn't squeeze an evening session in while its light I guess.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    i'm no expert (clearly!), but i'm a fan of doing your reps at your current fitness for a distance, so those 5k paces you did tonight, are averaging 2:50, thus 5.40 pace for a 5k.  That would be the pace to lead you to a 17:36 5k, which would be a good result...

    Doing even 2.42s would mean 5:24 miling, which would give you a 16:45 5k result.

    Presume when you say 90sec walk/jog that was for the 800s as well as the 400s?

    What is unclear, is that on McMillan, the times for a long distance runner per 800 are given as 2:42 to 2:49. I wonder if the sharp end of this is too sharp, like with their recommended easy pace mileage.

    Or i wonder if the recoveries are longer. Seems fairly pointless giving rep times without giving recovery times to me. I'm sure we could all do infinite 800s in 2:40 if we had 10mins in between!

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭

    I agree re the recoveries for MacMillan - would be useful to know - and that the sharp end is pretty sharp, though not unachievable with a long recovery. My 90 sec rec was the same for both lots of reps. not exactly 90 secs each time, as I got into a little rhythm of walking about 80m to a line, jogging back about 100m and then starting the rep at the same point (not sure what to do at a track you see!).

    You are probably right about targetting a race specific pace.  I've always tried to run reps as fast as I can repeat them for a given number of reps and recovery to try and build VO2 and lactate threshold, and on the basis that without the recoveries I'd run slower anyway in a  race.  I probably could do with getting a bit more focussed and scientific about it though! 

    Glad to see you'r as bored as I am tonight! Can't even watch the TV as its been hijacked by the kids and their mates over for a sleepover!

  • Stevie seeStevie see ✭✭✭

    The sharp end on McMillan is a little too harsh, especially 400's for 'long' distance. I wouldn't fancy keeping 77 sec laps going. The 'easy pace' is a little too keen as well 7 min/miles are not tough but definitely not easy. I'd say after 7:20 for me it's not easy and wouldn't want to run a long run at sub 7:20 pace. More like 7:30 ish.

    Bus those 800's look good. I always run my reps at target pace but nothing too far in advance. For example I run 10k sessions at 36 to 36:30 pace, when I'm currently 36:42.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    Bus, i don't envy your commitments! The single selfish life has a lot going for it...i still wonder back how i was managing 70mile running weeks, alongside 3x 70mile round trip drives...

    Stevie, slightly faster than current fitness i reckon is best...i'm not sure i'd handle 30+secs ahead of current level!

    anyone seen the general tab!? Page after page of spam!

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭

    Crikey! Sometimes that's how my whole life feels with my son - invaded by football!

    SG - with the exception of my running, I gave up on having my own life years ago!

    SG and SS - sounds like a good way to look at target reps I guess to set them at a fairly ambitious, but potentially achievable target pace. Next question though is for what distance given I'm not after any specific race distance at the moment, but running 10ks to halves. I would guess though, that if I aim at a theoretical 10k target pace, that will work for most other distances, all else being equal. So, given I'd like to crack 36 min for 10k, I should be looking at 2:52 800m reps...


  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    Your 10k looks to be 36:15 currently, which is 5:49 pace, whereas target pace is 35:59  (5:47 pace)

    Therefore, current 800 pace would be 2.54/2:55

    And slightly faster than this...would give 2.52/2.53.


    Has Phil hacked my account with this anorakism!

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭

    image yep, glad to see we agree!

    Think I might target 2:50 though - much prefer round numbers image


  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    How about 4 laps 10k pace, 2 laps steady  x4. That was the the first session of a build up of 4/5 weeks that got me certain a 10k pb was on the way last summer.

    It ends with 5 x 4laps 10k pace 1 lap steady

    10k pace for me was about 1.24 a lap, and steady lap was 1.45

    Sessions that certainly rely on you having the right pace windows, as you don't stop for 5-6miles!

    ps the spam is getting ridiculous on the training tab...took a while to find this thread!

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