HADD training plan



  • JB, (and others) Advanced Marathoning by Pfitzinger & Douglas is a good book to read re: training and schedules. They may be a little advanced but the principle is the same. You may need to customise the 50mpw schedule to suit. It's a really good read.

  • JB - I think Hal Higdon's Intermediate II training plan fits the bill very well.  The P&D plan that Brian mentions is very good and I'd thoroughly recommend getting the book for the stuff on training in general, but the schedule is a little more prescriptive about interval sessions at the sharper end. 

    Hal Higdon's plan is based on 50mpw over 5 runs per week and only really includes either easy pace running or "race pace", so it would be very easy to follow off the back of HADD training, and easy to adapt if you wanted to tweak with additional mileage or the odd threshold session.  It's an 18 week plan BTW but you'll be able to slot into it very well with the mileage you're doing.

    [edit]  In fact I've just reminded myself that it starts off from a fairly low base (<30mpw) so you'd probably want to tweak the earlier part of the schedule anyway.  The most important thing for me would be getting used to the weekly schedule of long run + mid-week medium long run + shorter runs including some MP runs.

  • I followed the HH imtermediate plan for my marathon back in May. Probably ran the LSR's to quickly and the pace stuff not quick enough but still took 13mins off my Nottingham back in Sep 10. As PhilPub says, it's pretty straight forward, although I found the RW Garmin plan I used for my marathon last month much more enjoyable, due to the variety of sessions.

    Just under 7 miles for me this morning in a shade over 64mins, averaging 136bpm. A nice run on a foggy morning and in so far as I feel, the best after marathon month yet image


    I won't be switching to any other training plan, I will stick with Hadd all the way.   That's what I've done before and that's how I reduced my marathon PB by 13 mins in 2009 and another 13 mins in 2010.   Only speedwork I do is racing and the only work sessions are the ILTHR runs.  Last year I also did a PB in 10k and 6 hour ultra.   Using Hadd I can get my PB's and not get injured.

  • LS21LS21 ✭✭✭

    Hello all,

    Not been on for a while but great to see some great progress being made (top 10k bluenose!!), and welcome to newbies, particularly Nick who I had a discussion with on another thread.

    Trying to cut a long story short here and omit grizzly details, but I'm taking a total break from running for a little while. I've got myself into a serious overtraining rut. Google 'Chronic Overtraining Syndrome' and I hit just about every symptom listed! I'm obviously aware of self-diagnosis via the internet, but my performances have been shocking for months and I need to do something for my long-term future. I did a local 10k on Sunday (so I was eligible for our Club Champs) - I full on raced it and was slower than I ran the first 10k section at VLM back in April!

    I think part of my 'obsession' is that my brother is very seriously ill. Cancer, kidney failure, major issues with dialysis (now had to have tubes fitted into his neck) and pneumonia. Running has been quite cathartic really, but I'm suffering serious burn out. I'm absolutely shattered, and everything hurts (problems with IT Band, Achilles Tendonitis and Plantar Fasciitis). I've been running through pain for weeks now, cos it helps me to cope with stuff. But enough's enough I guess - body has shut down!

    I'd hoped Hadd might let me tick over and do more of an active recovery, but I've really gone beyond that stage. Time to be honest with myself I think, and take a proper break.

    Will still be following the thread though, and hope to pick up on this again in the New Year (assuming I feel refreshed by then). Think it will be a good re-introduction to training and stop me doing too much too soon.

    Good luck everyone, and sorry for the long ramble!

  • LS21, Very honest assessment, and I'm sure we all appreciate that. Try and enjoy the break (obviously with your bro the way he is, this is gonna be tough), and just forget about running for a while. Hope that when you decide to come back that your mind and body are healed. Good luck mate!

  • Dr.DanDr.Dan ✭✭✭
    LS21 -  sounds like you've been running yourself into the ground. Running is certainly cathartic and it sounds like you've needed it. But the body doesn't lie ... take a good break and I'm sure you'll come back stronger. Good luck.
  • LS21, agree with Brian, very honest indeed.

    A break does work, although it is hard to do it !  I ran both London and Edinburgh this year  with a shin splints injury (I know I should not of done them !!) and I rested from all impact sport for 3 months and I now run so free.  I have no pain and feel so much better for the rest.  Of course I really missed running and was gutted to see other runners out, but a few months out is a small amount of time lost.

    Really hope you get your mojo back and you become a better runner because of it.

    Take care


  • Dr.DanDr.Dan ✭✭✭
    I'm still on the bench ... scary cycling and boring swimming are going okay ... 115M bike commuting on the bike and 9,500m swiming so far this month. I hope that I will return to running before Xmas and when I do it'll be back to Hadd base training. In the meantime, keep up the good work.image
  • Rather than looking for the perfect schedule, mix and match the best bits from a variety of schedules to suit yourself. For example, I don't think you can beat Arther Lydiard for base training, but some of the phases after are a little extreme. Jack Daniels running formula is the simplest thing to follow for speedwork and I also include some of Joe Friels cycling plan thoughout as well, as I love cycling as well.

     I'd never criticise someone elses schedule if thats what they enjoy doing and they are improving though.

  • LS21 - Take it from someone who has virtually been away from running for best part of a year, the greater the rest the more the mojo comes back when it wants to.  You've got a lot going on so a rest will do you good.  All the best, mate.

    I've got that very pleasant feeling of mild DOMS brought on by the recent introduction of a new activity, namely another session on the indoor rower (20 mins).  Always good to get another muscle or two in on the action.  image

  • It's good to cross train, maybe not for improving your running specifically but for all round health. I've taken up Pilates and fell like its really helped with my posture and is starting to improve my running form. It's bloomin' hard mind!

    LS21 - so sorry to hear about your brother's illness.   Best thing you can do is nurture yourself as best you can under the circumstances and if you feel you need to 'do' something, don't be tempted into going for a run but clear out the garage or the loft or dig the garden.
  • LS21 you are making the correct decision - you cannot go on punishing your body as it will lead to long-term injury as well as even more unsettlement.

    Symapthies regarding your brother - just try and ease up a bit yourself otherwise you will be no good for him.


  • LS21... Would just like to echo what everyone else has said.... And you'll know yourself when its time to return...

    Stay Strong..... 

  • LS21LS21 ✭✭✭

    Morning all,

    Thanks for the messages - very kind. Bro is doing ok I guess - but the talk of the rowing times got me thinking. They did a 2,000m thing at the gym where he was which he won (in 6'46 I think? - under 6'50 certainly). He was phenomenally fit, built like a brick sh*t house and didn't have an ounce of fat on him. He can barely walk up the stairs now - very very sad. But he's doing ok as stated, and he gets his home dialysis machine next week which will help a lot as he doesn't have to go to hospital 3 times a week now. And he doesn't have to go back with the cancer job until after Xmas (largely cos they won't do anything with him til his blood count improves). Lots going on, but there we are.

    My training will be ok too. I've cut back a bit since the Summer anyway - knew I was on my arse, but still tried to do little bits. But my October mileage was down by about 40% compared to the rest of the year, but I was finding even the Hadd stuff tiring. Time to just stop I think. Not ran at all this week (not done anything this week actually!) and feeling a bit better, and certainly less achey so I'll be reet.

    Sorry to hear Dan is still benched, but absolutely chuffed for Phil cos I know how much you've been through the mill in the last 12 months. Under 75kg is impressive too mate - I'm going the other way it seems!!

  • Hi All.

    Did my first Hadd run last night, due to time it was a shorter run.  I ran 3.33 miles, I think my ave pace was about 10.40 and average HR 126.  I normally would run a short run at 8.30 pace (ave).  My highest reading was HR of 142 and my lowest after the first half mile was HR of 118

    Found it really easy and different to my normal style, which is run the first mile easy. and then blast it til I get home !!

    Will do my LSR Hadd style on Sunday and then again on Tuesday and see how it goes.  

    Still find it hard to understand how SLOW can equate to FASTER times and longer running, but I have faith that over time it will work !


  • LS21

    Sorry to hear about your situation, good luck to you and Bro...

    Glad you will still be looking in on this thread as your comments were so helpful to me in finding this thread which has rejuvenated my enthusiasm for another marathon in the spring.

    Good Luck Nick.


    Funny Hat - yes, it's hard to comprehend how training at slow paces is going to lead to faster race times without any 'practice' at that faster pace.    I can't explain why but it does work.  

     In 2009 after a good spell of Hadd training I was on the start line at Wolverhampton marathon, conditions were good at about 18 degrees and on a whim I decided to have a crack at getting a PB.   I knew my training was going well but didn't know what pace to run so decided to do the first 5 miles of the race at 135 bpm (84% MHR) and allow myself up to 140 bpm(87.5%MHR) for the rest of the race.  I stuck to those HR's and after the first few miles I fully expected the wheels to come off, in the latter stages I was overtaking runners that always finish ahead of me and I was still expecting to slow down but I didn't.   It was 10 mins off my PB and I can honestly say that I didn't struggle at any time.

  • Shades that is really interesting, it was always good to hear from someone who has done it and seen the results.  Was that 10 minutes knocked off your PB ?

    How do you do hills with Hadd in terms of sticking to within your HR ?

    I am out tomorrow to do a 1 hour 30 mins  which I will aim to stick to between 120-130 bpm.   I have Bedford Half in two weeks so I hope to get a close to 9 miles in tomorrow and then 11 next Sunday.

    Cheers FH


    Funny Hat - yes, 10 mins off PB on that occasion.  

    I live in Devon so a fairly undulating/hilly area of the country, so impossible to run on dead flat routes which I wouldn't want anyway as it doesn't prepare you well for racing.   The longer you run with an HRM the more skilled you become at controlling your heart rate.   With hills I deliberately allow my HR to drop on the approach to a hill (so I have a few beats in hand) then try and run up in a steady way, I will allow my HR to go up to 75% on a hill.

    For steeper hills I try and avoid those until I'm on the ILTHR runs.

  • Some advice on what to do with hills?

    Should I try to avoid letting my HR go over the target then, on hills, or is a little lee-way allowed? I'm also not sure what to do on downhills- I can get up a lot of speed (relatively) without much increase in HR- is this OK?, or is it better to keep to vaguely steady pace, and allow the HR to vary more with incline?

  • imageStill knocking on Hadds door but it is not letting me in at the minute image

    All runs 75% and lower HR but know improvement at the minute , 3 weeks into the programme and i am up to 40 miles a week with 2 LSR , 1 = 75 minutes long and 1= 90 minutes long in the same week.

    One positive at the minute is that nothing aches or hurts and my HR is steady all the way through my runs , but time is yet to drop patience is the game here i thinkimage 

  • curt warner wrote (see)

    but time is yet to drop patience is the game here i thinkimage 

    I think you've hit the nail on the head there Curt, patience. I don't recall what your previous background is, but 40 miles a week, no aches and pains is something I'd consider an improvement, for me anyway especially as the aim is to continue building on it.

    Nothing for me this weekend, kidsitting duty. But that said, I wouldn't have been up to it as I've been feeling a bit rough, luckily not full blown man flu though. Not surprised really, looking back at my run on Friday, the 2nd half was hard work. Maybe I was speaking too soon when I said I was well on the road to post marathon recovery image. So Max HR test is postponed until later in the week.

  • Curt,

    I found the improvement came very suddenly at about 4 weeks, which was also when I was hitting around 40 miles per week with two 90 - 100 minute runs per week.

    The improvement was, and still is at the moment, about 45 seconds a mile with my heart rate at the same average. As I said it happened all of a sudden and at first I thought that maybe it was a fluke but have proved it time and agin over the last week or so, including on the treadmill where there is no variance like there can be on the road.

    Stick with it, I am sure you will see the improvement soon...
  • imageslowrunningman , background was football , not much in the way of running apart from the Great North Run 5 years ago, but i have gone from 0 miles a week to 40 in 6 weeks and there is no aches or pains anymore. Did 75 minutes today and could have done it again so something is working , as 5 weeks ago 3-4 mile was a killer at slow pace ........image But i am only 3 weeks into hadd training as the previous 3 weeks of running was just to get out there and run hard , then i found this thread and decided to give it a go loving it though.


     cheers for the encouragment , time is on my side gonna do the hadd programme for at least 5 months from beginning of november till the end of march, as i dont have a strong running background like some people .image

  • Hi Guys... Completed another decent mileage week, it looks like I'll be completing around 160ish miles this month, which is remarkable as my previous best was 123 in Sept, and 114 in July... I use the word remarkable, as I would expect a lot more fatigue and soreness in the legs....

    Have I seen any improvement???? Well, on the 6th Nov, I did a 90min run at 9.07mp with AHR 131, on the 13th Nov I did a 90min at 9.00mp with AHR 131.... Todays aim was 15min at 130, 70min at 140, 15min at 130.... What I achieved was,15min at 9.05mp AHR 125, 70min at 8.11mp AHR 135, 15min at 9.10mp AHR 130...... Improvement.... Would like to think so, but what I am finding is, I've got myself into a rut of churning out 130HR miles, but like today when trying to up the session found it very differcult to achieve... Anyone else find that???? 

  • BN74, you seem to be in a similar position to me. HADD has allowed you to increase mileage without being too fatigued - which is good.

    However I do not see any  real improvement in terms of pace/HR although the increased training will eventually lead to that.

    Another 40 miles this week so a nice consistent build up. Ran my 10.3 mile route today in the same time as all my other efforts since HADD started but I felt I was running easier (did not have a HR monitor on so only guesswork) . Definite that I can up my pace on the flat but uphill still giving some cause for concern.

  • Cheers Shades.

    some good improvement quoted above, well done all !

    I did a long slow run, found it hard to stick to HR as I running on a very windy morning and it effected my HR, anyway these are the stats :-

    In Miles / Time / HR

    1 - 10.59 / 134

    2 - 11.02 / 136

    3 - 11.15 / 145

    4 - 11.14 / 140

    5 - 10.58 / 138

    6 - 11.09 / 129

    7 - 11.16 / 135

    8 - 11.25 / 133

    9 - 11.05 / 136

    Just over 1 hour 40 mins ave HR 135, was aiming at more like 125 - 130 HR so I guess not too bad. Like the rest of you I felt really good at the end and could have run for a few more miles and no aches which is a big plus !!!

    My last recorded HR on a LSR was 155HR, 14 miles in 2 Hours, which looking back now was too quick !! This was in FEB 2011.

    all the very best for the week ahead guys.

  • HI all. Another one for Hadd if you don't mind me joining in.

    Could I ask a few questions. Coming back from injury at some point in the next month. Will this work for me as I intend to walk a bit run a bit but not go above 140ish heartrate. Problem being, that that means that my pace won't be steady. Should I wait until all my runs are running. Also, does this work if you're a slow runner (all of your agonisingly slow paces are actually faster than my normal pace ;/ )
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