HADD training plan



  • A few good results, and a few knocking on the door. As somebody as already stated, with the Hadd stuff the improvement does appear to happen almost overnight. So keep at it, remain patient, and as long as you remain comfortable, and the runs are generally long enough, the adaptations will occur.

    Hills - What I tend to do is when I venture out for the session I have a target HR in mind (what I want to average), and also the HR I want to stay below (max for the session). Try and avoid the steep hills as this will affect the stats, and it will be difficult to maintain the average (low HR) for the run.
    When going up hill, try and run as comfortably as possible. Try and stick to below your target max HR, and If you allow yourself another 10 beats say, for the uphills, then allow your HR to decrease by 10 beats on the downhills, therefore maintaining your HRav. This is not easy and will take practice, but it is possible, so don't get disillusioned if you struggle at first.

  • sneglen

    I don't know about the others but this is what i plan to do. I've ot run for ages injury plus a few other problems. so i plan to start running easy (my base is trashed) for a good few months. I don't think speed is a issue (im ot quick by any means and my runs will be slow) just might mean you cover less miles than the fast guys but thats no problem.

    When i did this before i only did up to 40ish miles a week and  did quite well out of it. ot quite the 50+ of others

    So i'm hoping to get back shortly build up runs will be short at first walk if ecessary  but soon once you (i) can manage short runs you can build from there

    Something i've not seen mentionned in this thread apologies if it has but Hadd did mention doing alactic strides even in the base phase. These are short strides  less than 10 seconds i plan on doing these again as well


    sneglen - it's fine if you are doing a walk/run routine as you should be able to keep your HR fairly steady and low doing that.

    Pammie - I've never done any stridesimage

    Funny Hat - running into a headwind is the toughest of all conditions when using a HRM.

  • Shades, thats what I thought !!  Really enjoyed my running yesterday and feel great today .  Off tomorrow so will go out and see how it goes.


  • I have re-read the Hadd document and not been able to find strides in the training. IDID although find a 200/200 session, 200m alternating hard (5kpace?) and easy pace. I think this didn't get mentioned till week 6 though. I am guessing its probably thrown in for leg speed more than anything, and also to relieve any boredom?


  • Pammie, think you're merging Lydiard with Hadd. Which incidentally I have done in my training schedules, and can't really be a bad thing!!!!!???

    Brian. wrote (see)

    I have re-read the Hadd document and not been able to find strides in the training. IDID although find a 200/200 session, 200m alternating hard (5kpace?) and easy pace. I think this didn't get mentioned till week 6 though. I am guessing its probably thrown in for leg speed more than anything, and also to relieve any boredom?


    Phew, I thought I'd missed a bit of the Hadd document.image
  • Having done Hal Higdon intermediate predominately at a base building sort of pace and a tempo every now and again earlier in the year and then the RW Garmin sub 4hr plan for an October marathon, I'm all for using interval sessions. I enjoyed those most of all, although the intervals were longer, but probably because they felt like a proper hard workout and I felt energised afterwards. So intervals get the thumbs up from me
  • Brian

    No not thinking lydiard alactic strides were  mentioned in the big thread on lets run sadly now deleted so can't show you the source. Remember the document(s) doing the  rounds are just a edited version of that big thread (well there were 2 big threads on the subject

  • Morning All,

    I certainly wouldn't do any further than 200m. Any further than that and you will start to build lactic acid, and then this will bring on more fatigue, thus defeating the object of the sub-lactate threshold running.

    Pammie, Yes I remember the thread. Happy with the strides as part of the Hadd schedule. Use them as a form reminder. Smoothly accelerate over 60-80m, focus on staying relaxed and reasonably upright, whilst pumping the arms and lifting the knees to emphasise good technique. I use these as part of the warm-up prior to a track / interval session. 

  • Evenin' All, Newcomer here and I’m after advice I'm afraid, though having read through all the posts over the course of the last hour, I hope that I am not going to ask too many bone questions!Ok, the basics: 47years old; 30 years in the military; fitness very much part of life; ex rugby player; never had the commitment to run a marathon... until now!  The thing is that we arrived here in Naples (serving with NATO) in July this year and the missus fell in with a group of ladies the same age who have been training for the Rome Marathon (18 Mar 12) for the last 3 months (not sure what plan they are doing - I suspect it is a 12 weeker that they have been 'dwelling on' until they get closer to the race).  Anyway, my wife wasn't serious at first, simply using the regular sessions as a way to get out and re-acquaint herself with running in a glorious climate (having raced XC as a schoolgirl).  Given that I work all day we are not able to run together and I set my sights rather lower (or higher, depending on how you look at it...) by simply aiming to do my best on the Brit sponsored 'Vesuvius 10km Race' (800m climb start to finish).  Without boring you all, Libya got in the way and I didn't train as much as I should have, but managed a very creditable 1hr 19min (two weeks ago).  On Monday this week, around my established 10km training circuit, which features about 50/50 hill work and a 300m climb in all, I managed a PB of 58 mins, but working at about 85% capacity (I regularly run with an HRM).  Though I have yet to test myself on the flat, I suspect I could probably do around the 50min mark for 10km.And now to my problem... the missus has become so keen on her running that she has just signed up to run the Rome Marathon.  I reckon that if she is going to be out 5-6 days a week getting in the miles, then I might as well get stuck in and have just agreed to take the same opportunity to commit to my first marathon – Hurrah! The 64,000 dollar question is that with only 15 weeks until D-Day, will the HADD plan work for me?  Or should I go for something more traditional, assuming that I already have a pretty good base level of fitness now?  Perhaps I could combine the two: say do the HADD for 10 weeks before getting some speed work in... or should the HADD suffice regardless?  So many ponderables!The other problem I face is that I am currently part of a team training for next year's Navy 'Gun Run' competition which already involves two beastings a week in the gym and which is set to get more demanding in the New Year.  I know someone else asked in this thread about mixing high intensity cross training with HADD, but I'm not sure I saw a definitive answer.  Will it ruin the effect altogether, thus negating the value to be had from a 'base' style of programme, or can I combine a HADD run in the morning with a circuit session at lunchtime? I think that's enough for now, but I hope the ‘HADD Masters’ among you can see my quandary and offer me appropriate guidance.  The bottom line is that I want to do myself justice in my first ever marathon (despite not being able to say with any certainty whether that will be sub 5, sub 4.5 or sub 4...).All advice gratefully received! 
  • Alright Laureate33.... Speaking as a ex-squaddie, you want to compete to the best of your ability, its what we were taught in training...... But with Christmas, New year, The Navy "Gun Run" and the intense training that requires, and then all the spam's you end up getting dicked for, I would decide now to go out and just enjoy the marathon, even think about running with the wife (but make sure your in front of her at the end, otherwise you'll never hear the end of it)...... And if you enjoy it, then pick another one were you can devote the training that a hard marathon requires....

    All the best in what you decide.....

  • Hi Guys.... Came across this thread last night so haven't read most of it.... It appears to be John Hadd and Antonio Cabral having a email conversation back in Feb 2008.....  


    It would be good to know what the regular HADD'ers view's on it..........

  • Best Hadd run yet today, cool and gentle breeze and 7.5 miles in 71mins with an average of 126bpm. Going to take a day off and do some core work tomorrow and then do a Max HR test on either Thursday or Friday so I can make sure the HR limits are as correct as they can be.

    Thanks for the link BN74, can't possibly read all of that now, it'll have to wait until I'm in work tomorrow.

    Welcome Laurette33, hope you're enjoying the hard life in Naples. On a nice little 3 year tour myself in Germany and just waiting for the snow to start falling.

  • SRM.... Had 17 years in Germany myself, when they had real winters...... Thats bringing a tear to my eye....


    Laureate - I think you should just use a more traditional marathon training programme for Rome, you already have a good level of fitness so just a matter of getting the long runs in.   First marathon is about dealing with the distance, after that you can decide if you want to do some Hadd training if you intend to run another marathon.

  • Thanks Guys, I appreciate the advice and will put my HADD aspirations on hold for the time being...  It looks like the RW 'Intermediate' 16wk programme for me!  Unless, of course anyone has any other first time 'recipes for success'?  Notwithstanding, having spent last night poring over HADD's document, I find the whole idea fascinating and am already looking forward to giving it a go when I have time to do it justice.

    BN74 - 17 years in Germany, huh?  No doubt through the good-old Cold War when everything had a focus and the only thing that used to catch us out was an ill-timed ACTIVE EDGE - now that does bring back memories image

    SRM - enjoy the winter: it seems to have forgotton all about us in Naples - midday temperatures are still in the high teens which  makes lunchtime running along the Bay an absolute joy...

    All - despite reverting to a traditional training programme for Rome in March, rest assured that I will check back here regularly to get all the tips for next time around...!  In the meantime, good luck with your individual programmes. 

  • Welcome Laureate33. Interesting quandry. And I'm only going to make it harder for you, seen as how Shades has opted for tradition.

    I would do the Hadd stuff, and FORGET about any speed training for this build-up. The circuits/gym work will complement the running I think, and the strength work will enable you to cope with the mileage. With 15 weeks available, I would do something like this:

    1. 6 weeks of easy (Zone 1) running, building to 4 or 5 runs per week, and maybe 2 of them being 70mins or so. The long run should be about 90mins by the end of this block.

    2. 5 weeks of Threshold work. Starting with an easy week where you cut-back to 30% of your current mileage. Then 4 weeks where you add 2x90mins with 70mins@80%. These should be done Monday / Thursday (if long run Sat), or Tuesday / Friday (if Sunday long).

    3. Week 12 and 13 should include 1x90mins with 70mins@83% (These 2 sessions should give you an idea of your target pace).

    4. 2 week taper - 1 week at 70% mileage, last week at 30% (not incl marathon).

    Whatevere you decide, good luck and hope you enjoy the running / training as well as the event itself.

  • Laureate, Sorry to put the cat amongst the pigeons.

    Before you make the final decision I would consider a question.

    Do you intend this marathon (or long distance event) to be a total one-off, or can you see yourself pursuing the endurance event path? I think this is relevant because if it's the latter, I would DEFINITELY start with the Hadd base.

  • ...well well, the plot thickens!  (As I rather hoped it would...).  I'm all for putting cats among the pigeons (as a professional 'Operational Assessor', its what I do best!).

    Brian, thank you very much for giving me an option and for asking the key question... as it happens, I would very much like to think that this is the start of me getting into endurance running in a more focussed way - and not just traditional marathons.  I am a very keen offshore sailor and having skippered an entry in the 'Three Peaks Race' in 2009 (i.e. non-running), I was pursuaded to enter as an 'all-rounder' in last year's 'Scottish Island's Peaks Race'.  Needless to say that, as a keen hill walker, I paid lip service to the effort involved in running 40km up Ben More and back.  Suffice to say I now know all about hitting the wall!

    The bottom line is that I have always wanted to be a better runner.  Being in the Army, it is something that I have done for years, but never been particularly good at.  I've simply used it to maintain a base level of fitness for Rugby (and passing my annual tests, lol).  However, now that the other half has rekindled her interest in running, not only is it something that we can focus on together, but having hung up my rugby boots a few years ago, I find that it is starting to provide me with new challenges (for instance, the Vesuvius Race).  If I can achieve the base standard of fitness required to enjoy resonably regular half and full marathons, as well as the odd adventure race, I reckon it will keep me entertained into my retirement!

    So, pending other views throughout the day (if there are any...) I shall plan on commencing 'HADD' with an 'HRMax' test in the next couple of days.  I am really grateful to you for taking the time to suggest a programme and will report back regularly against my progress...

  • Hi Laureate,

    As I posted a short while back, I recommend Hal Higdon's Intermediate II marathon programme, which I think is a good "middle ground" between HADD training and some of the more complicated (i.e. overly prescriptive on speed training) marathon plans.  It will give you the structure required to make sure you get a sensible build-up of long run mileage, but you can also choose (as I would do in your situation) to run all of the sessions at HADD-prescribed paces, with maybe a few quicker runs getting towards threshold pace, as you get fitter and closer to race day.

    W.r.t. cross training, that might take a bit of experimenting with.  When I was training for my first marathon I was happy doing a pretty lively spinning class on a Monday, the day after the long run, and treating it as "active recovery" but it depends how the sessions you've got in mind fit in with the weekly schedule (and just how hard they are!)  You want to make sure you're getting enough recovery between harder/longer running sessions, especially when you're building up the mileage.

  • Hi Phil,

    I like that idea - having had a quick scan at the programme, you're right, it offers the best of both worlds in the time I have available.  I shall mull it over in comparison with Brian's suggestion and  see where else I can cross fertilise in terms of pace/distance/HR.


  • well this could take a long time!!
    Just been for an hours walk with no intention of running but decided to go for it. VERY sensible having not run for 11 weeks so just did a couple of little stints and stopped when the heart rate got to 142. Started again when it was down 20 beats. result. Never did more than 0.13 miles at a time. Averaging about 12m30s pace. Ran about half a mile in total image

    Laureate - you'll be wishing you opted for tradition when you do your MHR test, it's not a pleasant experience but has to be done!

    sneglen - well done, a good start

  • SHADES wrote (see)

    Laureate - you'll be wishing you opted for tradition when you do your MHR test, it's not a pleasant experience but has to be done!

    sneglen - well done, a good start

    Mmmmmm, again, I'm not so sure a Max test is the best way to go, or even necessary. If you have recent HR info from a race, or even a tempo run, it can be derived to all intents and purposes. This might be a more sensible way to start, and then after a few weeks, do the max test when feeling more able to cope.

  • Sneglen, very sensible indeed. Keep us posted on the results btw. 
  • Mmmmmm, thanks for that Shades!  And I am normally so fond of tradition too!!

    Actually, I am holding off doing the MHR test until my legs recover from the 80 shuttle runs and lord knows how many squat jumps and burpees in yesterday's circuit session... I reckon it is probably best approached fresh.

    As such, I have just cracked my first 45 minute HADD run at an assumed Zone 1 HR of 129 (i.e. 70% of 185bpm).  Managed to cover 3.85 miles at 12:33 per mile.  I suppose that's not too bad, but it was difficult to keep the pace down.  That said, it was a bonus being able to really appreciate listening to some Eva Cassidy whilst having time to take in the scenery: both animate and inanimate (...well what do you expect?  This is Italy and I am running along the Lido in town...)

  • Laureate, Good start. Plenty of scope too. Should be some pretty interesting and impressive results coming our way over the next few weeks. I can relate to the gym beasting too. Did my session with the PT at lunchtime. Hamstrings and abs were screaming at me!
  • Thanks Brian! 

    I will endeavour to keep this forum posted on my progress on a weekly basis, by way of feeding this 'living experiment' we all have going on.  On which note, it is good to be part of something!

    Keep up with the PT - glad to hear I'm not the only masochist who can't resist putting himself through it twice a week!

  • Quick de-lurk just to say this Hadd stuff works - and for those that are only 3/4 weeks in, be patient and rewards will come.

    I have been much less militant re-HRs, and Zones so I cannot call myself a full disciple like many on here. But as a starter for a crack at Comrades next year and to ensure I can happily increase mileage from 40mpw to 60mpw I have slowed all my running down massively - I am doing all my LSRs about 45 seconds slower than I previously did (probably on edge of zone 1/2), and I am doing 2/3 runs a week at really slow (zone 1 pace). I only rarely wear my HR monitor (it disagrees with my pigeon chest!), so I am afraid I do not have very detailed stats to prove it.  What I do know though is that I am about 6 weeks into this slow slow running phase - and I have just finished a 20 mile LSR and I felt great at the start, great in the middle and great at the end, and I feel ready to do more.  I was literally fighting myself not to push on for the last 6 miles, and that is a rare feeling for me.  Two weeks ago on my LSR I really struggled - so it is a massive difference for me. 

    Look this is only a data point of one for me - but I am convinced that physiologically something is happening to me, that is allowing me to run much more comfortably for long distances (and ultimately to run a much quicker marra time or hopefully for me to complete an ultra).

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