Why am I gettting worse?

Where is it all going wrong? Trying to go sub 45 for 10K. Last Sept I ran 2 10ks and did 48 30 or so which I was not overly chuffed with even then. have stepped up the training a LOT this year - been doing PT sessions which combines 20 mins of speed or hill work with some weights after, spinning every tuesday, and on at least 3 other days every week i run. sometimes indoors on t'mill sometimes outdoors and, generally one of those sessions will be a set of intervals.

Followed the Twin Peaks programme in the mag. All went to plan and have been running faster and faster intervals and tempos (all way above target race pace) and managed a t'mill 5K of 21.28 on first time trial attempt. in the past t'mill was always worse than outdoors. Even cruised round East Kilbride 10K in 47.26 a few weeks ago - and was not pushing it for the whole race either. it was all aiming for today's scottish gas 10K in ed and I did 48.31. So am stuck at square 1. am not even improving a little.

help. please....I'm really really thinking I might as well just give up. I'm better at training than I am at racing so what's the point?

sorry for long post but am pretty despondent tonight.


  • I cracked sub 45 this year getting 44:20. My 5k time is about 21 minutes dead when I did this.

    It just happened on the day, felt good, was a coldish day and I did it without even expecting to. Ran a 10k the week after and struggled home in 46 mins.

    Have you tried having someone to pace you ? What helped me in the second half of the 10k was running against someone. Also I think it helps if you know the course so pick a flat local one and practice it. For me, my successful 10k was a two lapper so on the second lap I knew what was coming and it really helped.

  • Consider

    You can't compare different 10k times because the courses are different; some relatively more demanding than others.

    Also the recent heat/humidity has been exceptional,the hottest; driest and sunniest July on record (since 1914); making distance running more difficult.

    You can overtrain, do you give yourself sufficent time to recover between sessions/races?

    I don't agree that training is purely for racing - I ran for years quite happily until the 80's jogging boom provided me with opportunities to race.

    Could be you need to forget races/times and go for pure recreational pleasure. If you are hoping for a PB every race you really will be disappointed. I do race but in moderation, running for me is getting out of the house, out into the great outdoors - sod the time, just enjoy yourself (unless it's for a special race)

    I had a really bad FLM experience and nearly gave up running altogether. Instead I joined a club (you don't say if you belong) and took some advice on more efficient training - quality not quantity.

    Give yourself a week off, then ditch the watch and run for fun for a while to get your motivation back
  • Hi EH. Perhaps you should reduce some of the speedwork and try to concentrate on building aerobic base...mostly easy runs with perhaps one faster session per week..this should allow you to run further/faster/more easily...takes a while though...it worked for me in terms of reducing 10k pb...from 43.45 to 40.35

    unfortunately, I am injured at present...see base training thread for info

    ps...I am not saying that speedwork is unimportant..just that, for you right now, building aerobic base/rasing lactic threshold is probably more important and will yield more substantial results..

  • oops...see base training thread for info on base training that is...not my rather sad injury..

  • What was the weather like today? How many miles a week are you running? How many easy miles, as apart from your hard intervals etc? Was the course flat or hilly? What running did you do each day the week before the race?

    All these and more will affect your result for a particular race. Maybe you should try other race lengths such as 5k and half marathon instead of concentrating on just one. I've done about 15 races and have only felt that I've achieved my true potential on one, when everything came together at just the right time.
  • popsiderpopsider ✭✭✭
    PT sessions, weights, treadmill, spinning - nothing wrong in any of it but if you replaced all that with running outside I'd be surprised if you didn't get a fair bit faster.
  • Hi Edinburgh Flump,

    I know how you feel. Putting in major training at the moment (compared to before May) and I don't see a major improvement. Foo Bar is right to mention the heat tho. I find that whether it's training or a race, I just can't perform in these temperatures. As soon as it cools down, I immediately feel better and can keep the heartrate down.

    Good luck and keep at it.

  • thanks guys.

    Today was sticky but cloudy with a hint of drizzle. bit of a headwind on the outward part of the course and they didn't provide water though they had said they would which did throw me. It was a reasonably flat course apart from a v steep hill at the end. Hills used to kill me but I think I may have got over that as today the hill was decidedly not the worst part of the race. If anyone did the Edinburgh marathon - it was mainly on the footpath along the coast from Granton to Crammond and back.

    Have been doing about 20 miles a week - that said, 10 of them tend to be on a sunday.

    I think I'll swop one t'mill speed sesh for one longer run outside during the week. Find running outside a bit of a nightmare except at the weekend as it has to be evening and I don't always feel the safest but I have recently cracked running with my other half without having a humungous row half way round so will drag him with me. I don't expect a PB every time but last year I had been really lax earlier in the year as my job was pretty grim and i'd given up a lot of training and so had only put in about 6 weeks and even then the runs were pretty short and so it kind of annoyed me that on the back of a year's decent training I am no better!

    There are a couple more races in the locality at end August and begining sept. I am loathe to just jack in the effort I have put in so will try for those and see what happens. If nothing, I will take your advice ook and ditch the watch. I'm not a club member, the only ones I know of round here seem to meet at 6 and I just can't guarantee to get there. Plus I'm not the most sociable runner. I forget to breathe if I have to talk at all!

    Thanks again, lots to think about.
  • Alistair, you were posting at the same time as me. The temps are killing me so you are probably right. Roll on october (well for running anyway).

  • Flump - I'm with DF about building an aerobic base. You don't mention a long run, I would suggest at least one nice easy 90 minute run a week.
  • EF - Think lots of people felt like they had heavy boots on today - I didn't race but was training at the same time and struggled - I put it down to the humidity ( and a bottle of wine last night!)

    It was quite warm and the wind on the way out was pretty tough. I reckon I would have been well off my PB today. It was funny I stopped and watched everyone go past and was actually glad I decided not to race! Saw one or 2 local pals in the pack - looked a reasonable number but I was surprised that there was no water.

    Hope the training goes well!

    Mrs J went out for 10 miles this evening when the sun came out so I nipped out on the bike with some water supplies at 6 miles - she needed it - it was hot!
  • Thanks again guys. I had been doing long runs on a sunday 70 - 90 minutes but I think you are all right,I need to get myself outside more often rather than stuck inside on a treadmill. I am bad for always pushing myself to the limit on every run too, I rarely finish a session feeling good!

    Jaggy J I have been checking your photo to see if I can remember seeing you! i did register a couple of folks out running who were not racing and being very envious!
  • It was hot and the hill at the end was evil but I got a PB of 51.25 so was quite chirpy about it all. You doing any more 10k's soon Edinburgh Flump ? So many to choose from at this time of year. It might all fall into placethe next time.
  • GG - no wonder I didn't see you - you were moving too fast!!! Reckon you would have beaten me on Sunday!

    EF - I was supposed to be running but stopped at the corner at the bottom of the hill to watch everyone as they started on the flat section out to crammond. The picture is a bit of a mass of blue and the hat helpfully hides my face! One of the guys shouted Hi John at me - that being my real name so if you were around then you might remember. You out running tonight? I've been debating joining the guys at Next Gen in Leith but I don't know if I can be bothered.

    Too much work to do for once... that will get GG laughing!!! After gliding along through the early summer it's all hit me with a bang now working every hour etc etc
  • Gillian congrats on PB. I am trying to do more 10Ks - thinking about Paisley on 27th and trying to switch from Half to 10K for the GSR on 3rd sept. I haven't raced so much ever before! normally about 2 or 3 races a year is my limit and this year I've done 5 already! not a lot by some standards but I'm fussy in that I won't travel too far.

    JJ - I did hear someone shout hi john so I definitely must have see you!

    tonight I am going to go for a bit of a run. not sure how far right now, going to see how the legs are! it'll either be at home - Fairmilehead or else in town near Holmes Place which is right by my work too.
  • Did 5 miles and feel like someone has swopped my good legs for a pair that have never run before!

    Don't know whats wrong - maybe need some physio to sort me out.

    Enjoy the run!
  • Edinburgh Flump thanks. You considered Linlithgow on 24th Sept ? Lovely course and up till Sunday my fastest time. I know a few folk got a PB there.
    Jaggy J one does what can :-) You still doing the Great North Run ? I'm doing the Haddington half this w/e and that's scaring the h*ll out of me. Will make final decision about Newcastle after it.
  • Gillian - Yes despite my creaking bones. Looking forward to running in the masses, struggling round walkers positioned just behind the elite athletes and peeing in the street due to the lack of bogs.

    Always a good day out!
  • There's already plenty of good advice on this thread, but for my 2p, you might be overtraining and/or not allowing enough of a time lag to recover and get the benefit of your more recent high quality training.
  • GG was contemplating Linlithgow though it was one of the two I did last year and didn't enjoy it but I know at least 2 others who got their PBs at it so might be worth a bash!

    Virgil, my husband would probably agree with you. On reflection, I do tend to end up doing hard sessions right next to each other mainly cos I'm not good at just taking it easy, always seems a bit of a waste of good time. i do generally have at least 1, usually 2 rest days a week though.
  • Hi Flump,
    I'm in exactly the same boat. Did 48:21 (a PB, hadn't raced a 10K for ages) at the beginning of the summer, after sporadic training. Really want to break 45min before I turn Veteran (eek!) in October. My next 2 10K's were both slower, despite having put in consistent training according to the RW 8-week 10K schedule. I've had really horrible stitches in my last 3 races, despite rarely getting them in training.
    The training feels like it's going well, I enjoy the faster sessions, am comfortable on the longer runs, but it doesn't seem to come together for racing.
    Incredibly frustrating. Keep us updated if things improve, I've got 25 days before my next race to try and turn it around.
    Good luck!
  • hey Em

    Things are on the up. I did GSR 10K on sunday and got a pb of 46.16 so it's a decided improvement.

    Hope things going well for you. I took some of the advice on this thread - have had more rest days and done more outside runs. I also decided to try to do something about the mental side of things and bought a book on sports psychology. It maybe had no effect - I suspect the PB had more to do with the wonderful pouring rain - but i felt more relaxed going into that 10K than I've felt for a while so it's worth a bash.

    Good luck! Keep me us posted!
  • Well done, good time! I've had an enforced break from running since I forgot to take my running shoes on holiday. Lots of cross-training though with walking, rock-climbing and mountain biking, so hope it helps. I also had a good session with the chiropractor who did something weird to my diaphragm, so fingers crossed that'll help the stitches!
    I think the mental side of it is important - I ran my best time when I wasn't really worried about PB's, just seeing what I could do, so I think I need to relax and just focus on running well rather than obsessing about my time.
    Next 10K in a couple of weeks, I'll let you know how it goes.
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