Focused Training - RW [Forum]

A lot of focused discussion has taken place on the "daily training thread" over the day's of 10/11th September!
On carbo-loading & training ideas.

As not to clog that thread up we now have this thread to discuss training for specific goals, anybody is welcome to join in.

So as a response to the "Hard Training" threads, I'm happy to help in an on-line coaching thread & hope others will join me [URR, BR, Tom, hilly, etc please!]

Well as some of us are close to marathon taper maybe we can start there!

Mines still a few weeks away but I'm planning on 3 weeks reducing mileage with my last hard session 10 days before, then steady running with 100m strides thrown in to keep the legs moving fast but hopefully not wearing them out!



  • BT-good idea. As you know I'm now approaching the final prep for Cardiff on the 3rd of Oct. My final weeks are much easier in terms of mileage, but I'm sure Mike G has a few sharp speed session to help me peak for the day!
  • hilly, I feel the taper is maybe my weakness, so I'm quite interested on your's with Mike. Last year my taper started with a back problem & filled most of the final 3 weeks!!!
    The fact I actually raced & finished I feel was an achievement in it self, but that still means my last proper marathon taper was Dublin in 2000 & a nightmare marathon that was!!!
  • Great idea - can I join in?

    As any of you on the training forum know, my running training is a bit haphazard and tends to take second place to the bike ... I also get v. frustrated with the fact that I have stayed pretty much on the same plateau for 10 years, regardless of how much or little training I do, or the type of training.

    But with winter coming, the bike will be laid up and as a result I want to work on my running speed endurance ... I'm not doing a spring marathon but have half a dozen 10ks and shorter races over the winter... and want to try and get my times down for 10k ...would be nice to end the winter with my 10k pb down to about 43 minutes (which is v. slow compared to others here but would be a huge breakthrough for me, never having gone under 44 minutes).

    Looking forward to seeing how the thread develops - and what other objectives people have. I'm sure that plenty of good ideas and debates to come out of this thread!
  • OK, the last taper involved a slight reduction in mileage but I would say I only stopped doing `sessions' as such 9 days before FLM.

    I would say that the last week will be taper of (starting Sunday) 75, 60, 75, 75, 60, 45, 20 mins including a carbo-depletion and reloading plan starting on the Tuesday
  • Train hard, win easy! ~:)

    LizzyB - Should be a piece of iclandic cake for you, maybe you can join a group with a few faster boys and girls (if there are any!).

    My plan is to 100/70/80/50. Drastically cutting back mileage, running possibly singles, but I will at least maintain one quality session.
  • Good idea this thread
  • URR - wish it was a piece of cake, but I am completely talentless! I really should start to run again with the group that goes from the local gym, there are some strong runners there. Must admit, I've drifted away from this group as I do find them all v. dull - they are all stereotypical self confessed 'fitness freaks' and when I once mentioned the idea of drinking a beer midweek after a run, well, from the response I got I might as well have suggested that we all started snorting cocaine. But maybe I should withold my prejudices and run with them all the same ...
  • Great, Big Tim.

    As you all know I was training hard for Amsterdam but got and inflammation on my Achilles tendons and had to give my training up. So... I have been reading a lot about Base Training and Hadd, Lydyard and Pantman's ideas. MG has a similar approach with long base training and faster work for the peak phase. I have lots of question for all base trainers.

    I am doing around 2 hours a day of slow running at 135 Hr.
  • I will have loads of questions as well, but at the other end of the spectrum.
    You may know or not but plan to get my 5k time down early next year, so a long time away as of yet.
    I will be keen to know what sessions to do after i've rebuilt my aerobic base, and built my mileage back up 40-50 miles per week (if my body can hack it
  • Big Tim, you mentioned 'last long run 10 days before the race'. Does this apply as much to a half marathon or could I do the last long a week before?
  • This would be great as a support system to get me through to my first marathon. That is my ultimate goal. I would be so chuffed to do this as the marathon is a long long way to run.

    My intention is to run the whole distance. That is my personal goal. OK it might not be a huge one but I could then say I have run a marathon. How brill that would be.

    I appreciate this is small to you peeps that have been running for years. But i would greatly appreciate your support as I want to be in running for the long term and am aware that i get a bit carried away at times!! :0)
  • Lizzy - do you never think of just concentrating on the bike and running for fun rather than times ? I'm finding it really hard to train properly for running and cycling together - but I enjoy running so wouldn't want to give it up - so I'm veering towards just running when it's convenient rather than to achieve goals.
  • heya, this seems like a great idea, I'm planning on really training hard over the winter and want big reductions on my times from 1500 to 10k. Been given a speedwork schedule by my coach but this should help me with the distance work. How much do people feel simply increasing mileage from about 20 to 30 up to 50 a week would help my times? What sort of training are people doing, etc?
  • LizzyB - LOL those Islanders sound very serious, maybe you should start the Islandic Hash House Harrier group!
  • Bryn "middle distance dude" Reynolds - I strongly recommend you get your hands on one of those Lydiard books. I think this will completely change your thinking and will cause an *aha* effect :)
  • I've seen various things on the internet about his ideas and they seem pretty good if tough, I'm torn between trying to use his style work, a Frank Horwill program or an Emil Zapotek style program (though obviously not nearly as hard) together with my coach's speed work programme, anyone got any good lydiard websites till I can get the book? only problem with high mileage programs is that I have problems running during the day (school) and my parents aren't really happy with me doing regular (more than twice a fortnight) runs over 14 miles. I'm thinking about doing roughly 5 to 7 a day for a while seeing how that turns out, I'll go hunting for some Lydiard information on the web now though, thanks
  • For example, quite a few of us run before school (well we are too old and out of school already) and we usually don't tell our mums how many miles we run too :) My mum for example has high blood pressure, don't want to push it so I tell her nice things, that I went for a walk in the park :)
  • Tom.Tom. ✭✭✭
    Likewise - tapering is not my strongest point. Tim, in your approach is week 4, the heaviest training load, and does it end with the last long run before the target marathon. If so how does your mileage fall in weeks 4,3,2 and 1. One of the problems is trying to maintain confidence during the taper, ie persuading yourself that you're not loosing fitness during the taper period of reduced training. It seems to me there are two ways of overcoming this, one is by reference to what you did on previous tapers and the other is to keep the intensity of previous speed/endurence sessions going, but reduce the volume. So for example a five mile lactic threshold run may be reduced down to 1-1.5 miles over the last three weeks or a 10-12 marathon paced run would be reduced to 2-3 miles, with last run done in race day kit and visualising the way you hope to feel at the start of the race. The Pfizinger book "Advanced marathoning" has a very good section on this.

    Tapering for shorter races, requires a much shorter period (incisive huh!). If I race on a Sunday, for a 10k I will run 7-8 miles on each of Friday/Saturday at 70-75% MHR pace. For a 10 miler the Thursday run would be probably be 10-12 miles also at 70-75%. This compares with normal training pace of 78-82% MHR. Before last years Bath half marathon, I ran 17 miles on the Monday at 7:08 pace, rested on the Tuesday, ran 7 miles on Wed,Thurs, Fri all at 7:00 pace and 6m on Saturday at 7:30 pace. On the day of the race I felt great, and despite the gale force winds cruised through 10M in 61:15 (6:07 pace) before buckling slightly to finish in 80:31.

    I tried exactly the same taper again three months later for Norwich Half to similar good effect. However during this intervening three months I did a weekly tempo run at LT pace, a weekly speed session of intervals at 5k pace and a weekly 13 miler at equivalent marathon pace. The effect of this was to improve steadily through this period, having the most fantastic weeks training four weeks before the Norwich race. During the last 4 weeks the speed of these sessions gradually slipped and I ended up running 81:40. This suggests that I peaked too early, and the max period of this type of training intensity for me is about 6-8 weeks.
  • lol, points taken, I need to be up by 8 at the very latest and am awful at getting up early in the morning, over the summer I go out running in the evenings and really enjoy that but once the evenings go it's almost impossible, I live in a village so there's no street lamps and no-one that I can run with, I used to run with my mum when I was in primary but she's still doing 10 minute miles and I'm doing 6 now so I can't really find a partner as there's no one that local who goes at that speed, anything I do has to really be on my own which gets depressing over the long runs. Trying out various things over the winter and seeing what works out, start winter training officially tommorow as that's my last track race of the season.
  • Popsider - yes, in all honesty, I think that will happen next year when we move back to the UK. But as I can't cycle over the winter here, and lack the mental fortitude to turbo train every day, I want to have one last crack at this running lark ...
  • Great idea for a thread -can I join in?

    I have a half marathon on Sunday this will be a building block as not back to normal yet.The plan is 13 miles today at race pace(in my case snail like ) then last run thursday but On race day will be doing a gentle 10 miler before breakfast then come back to hotel sit in cold bath for a bit maybe a nap then 1pm is race.What do you think I should do in the week? and what about carbo loading ?

    Live each day as if it was your last  give it all you have to reap the rewards.
  • Bog Trotter, my last speed session is 10 days before my marathon. My last long run will be two weeks before & 17M the week before I'll run 13M. For me a long run is anything 17M & over.
    For a 1/2 marathon a last long of 10M the week before should be OK but will depend on how high you've taken them in training prior to this.
    Tom, my high mileage weeks have been done, but that 4th week out will have a 22M run & cover 95-100 miles.

    It's seams quite a few are aiming for spring races & in my opinion the next couple of months are a good time to start.
    First of all start to increase the mileage & don't worry about speed work straight away.
    My sister is running Amsterdam marathon & up to 50mpw, with no speed work & has brought her 10K time down from 50min to 45min. She's built up slowly, doesn't worry about pace, but takes time to recover after the long runs.

    LizzyB, you just need to focus on getting out the door & running.
    Run training helps cycling better, than cycle training helps running, [does that make sense??]

    Pammie, getting to 40-50 miles will work for you I'm sure, then your 10K time will go sub 50min!!!!

    Scooby Snax, I think thats a great target :-)

    Bryn, your still young & have time to improve, can you not train at lunch times?
    btw, I think what you've got planned is a good place to start :-)

    WP, you mean 10mins before your race, I hope!!!
    All the problems you've had over the summer you need to just enjoy your running & not worry about times, for a few weeks. Just building back up for 6-8 weeks.
    Afternoon starts are difficult, but I've found if I eat a large breakfast, that fills me up & gets me through to 3pm [usual xc start time]

  • Sam.Sam. ✭✭✭
    Hi all,

    I think it's a fab idea BT, there's obviously a lot of experience and talent around on this forum so the online coaching thing maakes sense.

    I've been running for 3 years but always for fun, 3-4 miles etc. Decided in June that I was in a rut and needed a purpose so entered a 10k (next Sun!!). Now I can run 8 miles.

    My weekely schedule
    4 days a week - a curcuit training class with lots of running as well as strength exercises.

    2 days - run: 1 longer e.g 8 miles, 1 shorter and faster (4-5 miles)

    I run 8 miles in about 1 hr 12 mins, 7.3 miles in 1 hr 3 mins - according to pedometer

    to improve on speed should I ditch some of the classes and run more? Or just work harder on the runs I do?

    Any opinions welcome

  • Hi there, aiming just to finish the Loch Ness Marathon in 3 weeks time, been off for 5-6 weeks with a hamstring injury, physio says I can run but not to push it and I still get ocasional twinges in the said hamstring. Anyway my longest run to date is 13.1 and I am heading out to do (hopefully) a 4 hour run/walk this morning, hoping to do about 20 miles. I was also thinking of doing 10 miles tomorrow and then 15 miles next week. Is this too much, too little or what? I have done 2 marathons before in Lochaber in April and Abingdon last October, would like to finish sub 5.30 but finishing is the priority.

    Any advise please.
  • (lurk)
  • Jane, asuming today's run/walk goes well, then I see no real reason not to do the 15M next weekend.
    Your aiming for endurance where as a sub 3hr marathon [3:30 for women] would call for endurance & speed.
    Might be worth having tomorrow easy & 10M Tuesday/Wedensday.
    Listen to your body, I'm sure your'll be OK.
  • Thanks BT

    For all your advice all taken on board Large breakfast it ahall be,but as at a hotel may have to take my own food;-)

    Yes all my Cross country races are late starts must try to remember larger breakfast!!

    Will do after this week back to schedule and start again.

    That is great running and times from Your sister, talent must run in the family;-)
    Live each day as if it was your last  give it all you have to reap the rewards.
  • Nice one BT!

    Probably your aware that I have my marathon in 3 weeks and same as Hilly really want to make Cardiff count and originally I had opted for about 2:53 ( maybe a little out of my league ) I will now just focus on between 6:40/6:50 m/m and hoping to bring me home in 2:55/2:59.

    The training has not gone to plan but that is my own fault, due to two big tri events right in the marathon training phase but it has given me endurance and the biggest positive at the moment is recovery, my body seems to be able to pull round so quick compared to say last years marathon and last years triathlon!

    I suppose my main question ( and to be nosey at others approach ) is that how do I play the next 3 weeks, you all know that I completed a marathon last weekend as a training run and have just been extra careful this week with running so I do not pick up an injury, managed 19 miles yesterday and feel fine, but want to know what sort of distances I should be aiming at or should I be concentrating on small quality sessions say 6-7 miles/track work for speed etc....

    I find that before all races I taper way to early because I feel I want to be fresh but sometimes I think it goes against me!

    Really want to get the next 3 weeks right, but then its all about learning and finding what suits best.

    Question to those that like to work on HR, what is best to use working from MHR or WHR or are they the same and the question I then want to ask is what is WHR and how do you workout the math?


  • Speedie, I use WHR, which is your maximum minus your resting. Then the %s are the %s within that range.

    Re. tapering I really feel it is a case of trying different approaches and seeing what works best for you. Right now, 5 weeks out from Abingdon I'm sacrifing some easy miles to be extra fresh for my interval workouts, so down to 82 miles last week.
  • Thanks Tim I managed the 4 hours of steady running this morning/afternoon, with 3 planned walking breaks and a couple of shorter ones (dogs being a pest) I felt a bit tired and stiff at the end but not too bad. Will go for a short walk this evening to loosen up the legs, hamsting gave no problems (touch wood). Will aim to do a 3 hour run next weekend and a 10 miler on Wednesday.
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