Junk miles or aerobic endurance?

Over the summer months I've got into the habit of going for a run on a Sunday evening pushing my 2 year old son around a flat 6 mile circuit in his buggie. My hear rate stays low (65/70%).
I do this run after a hard morning session of either a long run or a race. I feel very relaxed during & afterwards but was just wondering if it was doing me any good. I'll keep doing the run for the rest of the summer because we both enjoy it, but is it helping to build aerobic endurance or just tireing out already tired muscles?


  • drewdrew ✭✭✭
    Pizza man, in my opinion, the extra mileage at below 65% MHR is of no benefit to your aerobic endurance, but does it really matter, since you obviously get a lot of enjoyment from it. I would imagine that your son loves it too.
  • I feel I need to disagree on drew over this one, If you read the book SERIOUS training for endurance athletes it advocates the 60-70% (Zone1) training as one of the major building block of any training programme. Up to 60% of training time (depending upon training cycle).

    To run for 4 hours you at first must be able to put one foot in front of the other for 4 hours

    It calls this zone ”over distance” and is to be used for long slow training session (build up time on feet etc)

  • I imagine it helps with the stamina for the leg muscles - as Will says, time on your feet is important.
  • The question asked is ''junk miles or aerobic endurence?'' 60-70% runs will build you aerobic capacity to a certain degree if you're not used to exercise and give your muscles better endurence but once youre pretty fit then aerobic capacity will increase better on runs @ 70-80% with less milage.
    Having said that you can do 1 or 2 endurence runs on other days when you're not tired after a hard workout and get the same if not a better benefit.

    You should ask if you'll get better endurence by doing a 2 hour run after a harder workout or better results from a 4 hour endurence run after a rest day when you're totally refreshed?

    If you can fit in the same amount of endurence on a day when you'll minimise becoming injured then the 2 hour milage on a Sunday are just ''junk miles''.

    You can't train a tired overworked muscle as good as a well prepared muscle full of glycogen.
  • Is this type of a run not a recovery run, done at a relaxed pace to enhance the removal of lactate from the muscles ready for the next hard workout?

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