The Middle Ground



  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    Just completed 6 miles this evening, to bring me to 20 miles this week (plus the first game of cricket this season yesterday), so I’m having a rest day tomorrow.

    We also moved house just over a week ago, so I’ve been building a lot of flat packs in amongst wfh as well.

    Hope all is well with the rest of you?
  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭
    Im building up nicely. Week 3 of return to run schedule and peaked at 30 min today and 16m for week. Been maintaining the turbo do 5 sessions this week. Pleased given im 10lb over weight that last 2 runs easy hr has come in at 8.02mm. Think the 6 weeks of at times brutal turbo sesions has really accelerated my fitness. On paper, if you believe the standard calculations, the only difference between my current easy pave v hr and pre injury is my weight. 
  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    Good to see you building  well, both. 
    Trust the cricket was good, AD! Can't remember, bowler or batsman? Probably wicketkeeper now that I have asked that!

    AD: I probably wouldn't do a 5k time trial, certainly not on my own. I might do a 3k though and you still get a good guide to paces. I find useful as you can put in any distance and generate paces. 

    Thought I was building nicely, averaging over 50k a week for the last 8 weeks or so, having built by no more than 10% a week from  around 20k the weekend before lockdown. Have now got glute problems again (have had this since I fractured by sacrum close to a year ago). Hope things settle. Will probably have to get back to my physio.
    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭

    Yep, one of the main symptoms of the sacrum fracture is/was glute issues, which from what I have read is why it is often so difficult to spot the cause until an mri is performed as it acts like may other issues.

    I am hoping the glute work I've done this last few months will stand me in good stead. No glute issues so far in this my 3rd return to running. Th other two times it featured heavily.

  • Hi, I'm new to forum and in need of a little advice!

    I'm 37 and I've been trying to get my fitness back for the last 3 or 4 years(!), running a sporadic 400-800 miles per year. 2018 was a good year for getting my weight down sufficiently (12.75 stone) to run a 43 minute 10K but my ultimate goal is to get down to just below 12 stone set some proper PBs.

    My short term target this year was to simply get back to running 8min/miles over the 8-10 mile distance and I've been steadily losing weight since March in order to achieve that. I'm currently 13.75 stone and throwing in the odd 8.20min/mile 9 miler when I've felt good. Despite consistently running 25-30 miles per week since the beginning of the lockdown however, the last 2 weeks have felt horrendous. The longer runs have tailed off as my legs feel beat and I'm often leaving the house and immediately feeling exhausted.

    How can I reset? Should I take 3 or 4 days off? I cant seem to piece together why all of a sudden I'm struggling to get the longer ones in when I've lost a stone since I did that first longer run in March. I set a 'seasonal' PB for a route I've been running just last week but then later in the week I felt depleted again.

    We've just had a second child in April so is the sleep deprivation finally catching up on me? Or should I be able to get by if I eat/hydrate well?

    I've went from running 3 x 9miles confidently per week to plodding along doing 4 or 5 tough 5/6 milers. Its not fun!
  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭

    Hi slashnburn, Can you explain how you feel after running 8-10m at 8mm?

    How tall are you?

    I suspect you are running everything too fast. I run most of my mileage at about 8mm pace, which is 2mins per mile slower than my 10k race pace. I suspect you have just run yourself into the ground and need to reset by taking some rest then just chilling out and doing nothing more than nice easy slow running for a month or so and then thinking about things from there.

    You will just continue to compound the problem if you continue as you are and get slower not faster as the body cannot process the training gains as it's constantly hammered, particularly with less sleep. It all adds into the mix.

  • Thanks for responding. An easy going 8mm pace is the benchmark for me being ‘in shape‘ in recent years. Hence why I’m initially trying to get back to that level after last year which was a slow regression for me.

    The times that I’ve peaked at 8.20mm on those longer run this year felt not too bad. I did push really hard for the last couple of miles to get the time, but each of them came randomly amidst a mix of weather and once after several consecutive days of running.

    If I have a night of just 4-5 hours sleep.. would you say that it rules out running the follow day? Should I making sure I feel relatively fresh on each run or should I expect it to be tough at times each week?

    I need to shift this weight as I just feel I’m making life really difficult for myself.

    I’m 5’10”.
  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    I would largely agree with DT

    A few points that I would make:
    - as you realise, consistent consistency is key. We also talk about progressive consistent consistency where over time the distance (or pace) is gradually increased. 
    - are you having any easier weeks? Runners that I have advised have a back off week after every 4 or 5 weeks; certainly they never have more than 6 weeks without backing off. The cut back week is between half and two-thirds of a "normal" training week.
    - slow is the new fast: I also think that you are training too quickly. I work in kilometres and would like to see you running between 5:30 and 6 mins per k on most runs for a month or two. 
    - I would get greater balance to my week with a "long" run, a "medium" long run and at this stage some other shorter, but easy, runs. I would go back to basics a little with a long run of 60 minutes, and a medium run of 45. By medium I would say 65 to 75% of the long run. The long run won't be much above 10k! I would then add on either a km or 5 minutes each week, and then back off after week 4, so something like: 
    week 1: 60 mins
    week 2: 65
    week 3: 70
    week 4: 75
    week 5: 60
    week 6: 70
    week 7: 75
    week 8: 80
    week 9: 85
    week 10: 60 to 70
    With a corresponding MLR. 
    - after 9 or 10 weeks review what you have been doing. At some point quicker work should be introduced, but particularly given that there won't be any races for a while I would say hang fire on this. For now just enjoy your running rather than fighting every run. I think we should be looking for pleasantly tired rather than exhausted after each run.
    - are you doing any cross training, in particular stretching?
    - I would run off road where possible, particularly at this time of year.
    - I wouldn't be too worried about the weight: it WILL come off in time
    - Don't rush things! Be in the game for the long term!
    - I won't comment on sleep as different amounts suit different people plus different jobs have an impact too. 
    - Don't get disheartened! Take a more relaxed approach for now!
    - stick around and keep us posted. Feel free to ask questions! 

    Hope this is helpful...and sorry for rambling!

    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • Cheers for the advice. For 15 weeks or so now I’ve hit 25-30 miles per week.

    Erm... for cross training does pushing a buggy around a park most days with a 4 year old on my shoulders count?

    I think I’ve burnt myself out a bit having naively thought that by hitting my weekly target and losing a fraction of weight each week, that it represented progress.

    If I’ve had many weeks here I’ve ran 3 x 9 miles and a short recovery run, then by toning the relentlessness down a bit shouldn’t my long run be about 10 or 11 miles?
  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    The long run schedule above is only a suggestion taking into consideration your "burnt out" feeling. Certainly toning down the relentlessness is key. Whatever you decide I would build in gradual progression...and cut backs. I would write a short term plan similar to the above for the long and medium long runs at least. And don't be too negative: you have, and know you have, made progress since the start of lockdown. A temporary blip.

    "Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead."
    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • I did 9 miles on Tuesday and then 6 yesterday so it makes sense to take a break for the remainder of the week, possibly just doing an easy 4 or 5 this weekend.

    I think I just lack discipline! Come Monday I’ll want to start the week with a long one again, particularly as this week is now looking like 5-10 miles less than the previous 15 or so.
  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭

    You are too hung up on numbers on paper.

    By taking you backwards and leaving you knackered, your body is telling you it isn't happy. You need to break the cycle and to do that you have to reset.

  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    I would agree, DT

    And running should be at a conversational pace for now. 

    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • It’ll come as no surprise then that I have spreadsheets of my daily mileage/pace that go back 5 or 6 years! And that, the last 2 or 3 years I’ve chased a 1000 mile year but ended up falling short at 800-900 as I can easily go missing for a few weeks due to work/family.

    The plan for this year isn’t overly ambitious though.... get to modest a level of fitness and then carry it through winter. I feel I need a long run each weekend or two over winter to carry the confidence into next spring and ensure I don’t lose too much ground.
  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    SlashnBurn - welcome! I don't have anything to add to the sensible advice the others have given you. Sounds like you are in a similar position to me in many respects - age, young children draining your energy, identical 10k PBs etc - so I can sympathise with a lot of what you've written!

    Another 20 mile week for me last week. Started throwing a few strides into two of my midweek easy paced shorter runs, just to get the legs used to working a bit faster after months and months of just building up with easy running.

    Will do similar this week, then have a quieter week, before starting a Daniels 5/10k plan the week after. Notionally aiming for a target 5k/parkrun in November, but we will obviously have to see if that is possible nearer the time. If not, I may still run a 5k TT in November once I've completed the training cycle.
  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    Sounds sensible, AD! Any cricket? Remind me, bat or bowl? Did you see what I wrote near the top of the page: "I probably wouldn't do a 5k time trial, certainly not on my own. I might do a 3k though and you still get a good guide to paces. I find useful as you can put in any distance and generate paces."

    Slash: how are things going? 

    Only just over 32k last week after averaging 50 for a couple of months. Hamstring/glute not quite right. Hopefully a bigger week; they are fine at a gentle pace, but pushing on or more particularly anything uphill and the glutes simply don't seem to fire.  
    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    Opening bowler Alehouse - we were stuffed on Saturday, but I took a tidy 3/14 so it was ok on a personal level!

    Yes, I have revised my plan and will just do a 3k time trial in a couple of weeks time in order to assess paces, but would still hope to do a 5k one in November if there are still no parkruns or races by then (possibly by driving to the parkrun course and replicating it). Or do you still think that would be hard to really 'go to the well' mentally?
  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    AD: well done on the bowling performance! Opening the bowling must count as a decent session! 
    Re the 5k in November we will worry about it nearer the time! Get your 3 months or so of decent training in first!
    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    Yep, an 8 over spell straight up is a very decent session! Plus the ball followed me in the field, so I ran quite a lot on Saturday!

    Enjoying a rest day today 🙂
  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    4 miles yesterday, felt strong. Watch strap is falling off both ends of my Garmin now though (literally hanging on by a thread) so I'm trying to work out how easy it is to replace. Answer is probably that it is quite easy, but I'm not sure which particular Garmin I have as it was bought about 7 years ago, so hopefully I will buy the correct replacement strap!

    Planning 3 miles with some strides tonight.
  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    Seems it is a Garmin Forerunner 210, which is now discontinued! So finding replacement straps looks impossible. So it might be time to invest in a new watch!

    Does anyone have good recommendations for a watch which is fairly low-tech (not fussed about HR monitor, estimated VO2, elevation, stride length etc) and relatively cheap but which is reliable and durable?
  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    So, 48 short sprints on Saturday, AD! Plus more in the unlikely event you bowled any wides or no-balls! Plus fielding! Decent session!

    I can't really help much re Garmins. I have a 45 but still prefer my old 310. I find the numbers too small on the 45. Ideally I would want 4 "fields" showing when running: distance, lapsed time, current pace, heart rate. The 45 only seems to give me 3. I am looking for one that has 4 fields plus a bigger screen.

    10k Monday, 7.5 yesterday, 6.5 today. All gentle. And largely wet.
    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    There was one no ball actually (only about the 5th of my career!). Doesn't look like any cricket will be played this Saturday though, judging by the current forecast for the south east!

    I was looking at a Garmin 30 or 35 - they seem basic but provide pace, distance and time which are the only three things I really use my current Garmin for (even though I know it can do things like planning interval sessions and has a HR monitor, I don't use these features anyway). £99 on Amazon - might have to take the plunge. I suppose 7 years wear (amounting to about 5000 miles) out of the last one isn't too bad? And it isn't the watch itself which has given up, as I'd expect that to last for many more thousands of miles for heavy mileage runners, just the strap has snapped. It is getting very slow to connect to the GPS though which isn't fun standing on the driveway in winter waiting for it to connect!!

    Good kilometerage so far this week!
  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    Re connecting to GPS, my 310 is slow but I was given the tip to put it on something metal (in my case the bonnet of the car, face down) and it does seem to speed things up. I leave it out and then have time to tie my shoes, lock up etc. 
    Are there no straps available on ebay? 
    All cricket was washed out up here on Saturday (including the test) and the window cleaner was telling me this morning that only 3 of the last 30+days have been dry. 1% chance of rain this morning and yet again I got soaked!
    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭

    You can do something with the sow gps, there's a way of resetting satellite connection. I recall doing it years back. Of course if it's a very old watch then that sort of thing does start to deteriorate.

    You should be able to get something adequate for £100, Andrew. Some of the stuff my watch can do with threshold tests etc, I never use most of it.

    My watch does display 4 options on a run though. I have 2 screens set up on rotate as I run. Both have time and distance then the one has current and average pace and the other current and average hr.

    Ticked along this week with 3 runs so far, including just over 5 miles with 5 x3 min tempo and I have done some bike work each day also. Off out over lunch for 40 mins with 5 x 4 min tempo.

    Had follow up mri last night to see if fracture healed so just awaiting feedback on that.

  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    Hope the news from the MRI is positive DT!

    Pleased to log another 20 miles this week, and cricket on Saturday as cross training, which makes 3 weeks in a row at that mileage which is positive. 
  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    Well done, AD! Just keep the consistency going!

    Managed my highest week since 2014 or 2015: just over 54k. My shorter runs are gradually getting less short! 
    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    That's good to hear Alehouse - that's just over 30 miles isn't it? Are you running everything at easy pace? For me, this will be the big test - after 3 months of building up mileage all at easy paces, seeing how my body reacts to putting some quality sessions in as well.

    I have now done 80 miles this month, with 4 more planned tomorrow. The last time I got above 80 miles for a month was in February 2019! I feel quite fit aerobically, but it is yet to be seen how my legs react to faster running.

    DT - how the MRI results come back yet?
  • alehousealehouse ✭✭✭
    Nice and consistent, AD! Keep it going! 48 short sprints tomorrow?

    Yes, running everything at easy pace...although I always said that I would start to introduce some quicker stuff from August. So that's tomorrow then...
    214k (133 miles) for July. Most slow. A couple of hamstring and glute niggles may well get in the way of anything quicker. We'll see! 

    Progress is rarely a straight line. There are always bumps in the road, but you can make the choice to keep looking ahead.
  • Andrew_DAndrew_D ✭✭✭
    Yes, weather looks dry for tomorrow so hopefully I’ll get my full allocation of overs!

    Did a 3k time trial tonight to assess where I sit fitness-wise before starting to introduce some quicker running and some sessions. Turns out, pretty bloody unfit! 13:21 for 3k. I would make excuses about the heat but that would just mask the reality - all my base building has been worthwhile, but to run quickly I need to run quickly in training too. Best start that next week!
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