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Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season
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Run training tips for triathletes:

I just wanted to put together a quick list of run training tips as people are getting more and more into their training. Some are tried and true fundamentals, while others are the best cookie cutter answer I can come up with based on my experience (and blatant stealing from some credible coaches!! ; ^ ).

As always, I'm merely sharing my experiences. At the very least I hope to open a discussion about training. This is, after all, a "triathlon" forum.


RUN SLOW. RUN MORE.

This doesnít mean to simply slog every mile. Training pace should be at between 65% - 80% of max heart rate. Running slow in and of itself will not make you faster. It will give you the opportunity to get in MORE runningÖ.and THAT will make you faster.

BUILD MILEAGE GRADUALY.

Itís best not to increase your mileage by more than 10% from one week to the next. Keep in mind that adding workouts adds intensity. Mileage often needs to be cut back when adding in a workout.

Rule of thumb Ė each minute at Tempo pace (1hr race pace) = 3 minutes of easy running. Each minute at V02max (11 minute race pace) = 5 minutes of easy running. Each minute at Rep pace (5 minute race pace) = 7 minutes of easy running.

UTILIZE TEMPO, REP, HILL, and V02MAX TRAINING APPROPRIATELY.

Itís difficult to hold a peak for more than 4 weeks. I find that 8 month seasons chock full of heavy track sessions to be counterproductive for most people. Focus on building your base of easy running first. 3-4 months out from your goal race (1/2 IM or shorter) you should incorporate 20-40 minutes of tempo running. MODERATE amounts of rep, hill, and V02max training (< 2-4K for most) can be used 2-3months before goal race. Here you are merely preparing your body for hard workouts yet to come. Intense V02max training can be done in the last 4-8 weeks.

For longer races all of the intensity should be cut back, but not necessarily cut out completely. Intensity can be cut back by doing the workouts every other week, cutting the workout volume back, or backing off on the pace.

USE LONG RUNS APPROPRIATELY.

The long run is an important added training stress to stimulate aerobic development. However, donít fixate on it. More often it is your total monthly training volume that is going to get you through your season/long distance race, not necessarily the long run.

I like to see the long run be no more than 65% longer than the next longest run of the week throughout the bulk of your training. Donít make it so long that you need a few days to recover. Only as you get within 3 months of your long event (IM) should you really concern yourself with pushing the limits of your long run. Even then, thereís really no need to go longer than 2:30 to 3:00 hours, even if your run leg will be 5+ hours. It is the total volume of training on the YEAR that will get you through that IMÖ..not 4 hour training runs.

TIME CONSTRAINTS.

Remember, you run slow so that you can run more. Running slow really does you no good if you are just going to run the same 2 sessions a week that you would if you ran fast.

For the time constrained person I recommend focusing your intensity on tempo training for one workout and some moderate rep training (200s & 400ís) or hill training for the other. For longer races (for which it is even more important to run more), some longer marathon paced runs can be useful.

When substituting in these workouts, remember to be honest with yourself. You arenít doing this to be faster, you are doing it because you donít have the time to train more.

VOLUME of V02MAX TRAINING.

As I told someone earlier, competent collegiate runners will do 25 minutes worth on pace (10x800). These are guys who run 8 Ė 10 hours a week. On the other end of the spectrum, Iíve coached 14 year old novice girls who had no problem doing about 17 minutes worth on pace (5x800). So, realistically, you should probably fit somewhere between those 2 extremes. For a runner, 8% of total training mileage is recommended by Jack Daniels. For a triathlete the number will likely be higher.

EDIT - (did say 12% instead of higher. That, of course, will vary so much depending on what portion of total training the triathlete spends running).

Intervals will be around 3 minutes on (~ 11 minute race pace), 2-3 minutes jogging.

Remember, this is an intense session and only really appropriate for the 4-8 weeks leading up to an Oly, Sprint, and maybe HalfIM (for better runners). The risk of training at this intensity for longer distances is that you will compromise other more important training. That doesnít mean that it canít be done, but use caution and cut back on the intensity (fewer intervals, fewer workouts, slower pace, etc.)

VARY TRAINING SURFACES.

Running on the same type of terrain every day will leave you more likely to get injured. Run on hills, trails, grass, tracks, treadmills, and roads to vary the stress. Work in the occasional aqua jog session if you are beginning to feel aches and pains.

VARY the WORKOUTS.

No need to run the same workout every week. Varying the workout varies the stimulus to cause your body to adapt. It also makes things interesting. Instead of running 6x800 two weeks in a row, try 5x100, or 4x1200, or 1200s and 800s or begin with a 1600 and then 4x800, do a session on a cross country course, etc.

CONSISTENCY is the KEY

No matter what you do, you are better off doing everything wrong but doing it 52 weeks a year rather than training in 2-3 months chunks while taking long vacations from running in between. This doesnít mean you canít take necessary recovery breaks (Greg Watson would take off two weeks after every major race), but avoid the ďthings just got really busy this winter so I stopped running.Ē Even one run every two weeks is better than none.

DONíT CHEAT YOURSELF.

There are no shortcuts to fitness. MORE is more. I have yet to find a program that advocates less than 25% of your total training time to be running. All the biking and swimming in the world isnít going to build the mitochondria and capillaries specific to your running muscles.

Flame away!!

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
Last edited by: BarryP: Apr 13, 07 8:31
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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AWESOME POST!!


________________________________________________________
Try to remember to always just have a good time.

<http://weissersweekly.blogspot.com>
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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Barry, I've really enjoyed your series of run training posts, they are awesome. I think I take issue with the amount of VO2max training you recommend though. I know that the primary purpose of all triathlon training is to get fitter, and that to get fitter you need to exercise at a range of intensities, not just the one specific pace at which you plan on racing. That all makes sense.
But 7 - 12% seems like an awful lot of VO2max work for a triathlete. Isn't VO2max work highly nonspecific? Your range has a ~60mpw runner (high for a triathlete, but certainly not unheard of) doing 4 - 7.5 miles of rep work each week. Wouldn't this athlete be better served by LT work? He or she could do a lot more of it, and it seems like it would be a lot more specific.
Maybe I'm just feeling weirded out because your intensity guide makes me feel like a big slacker though. But could you elaborate on the intensity guidelines? They seem REALLY aggressive.

--
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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Thank you for the great info.

__________________________________________________

I want to go Fast - Ricky Bobby
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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Hi Barry

Excellent post
I really like CONSISTENCY is the KEY, which Learned in Dev's 100 days on running in a row. Now that might be taking it to the extreme, but for me frequency = efficiency which will allow you to go faster (which is the whole point), most of my runs during the 100 days were at a slow pace but it allowed me to run every day.

Thanks again for the post

Ewan


Ewan

-------------------------

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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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BarryP,
Why do you hate triathletes who are decent runners? That is the only explanation I can think of for you making these posts.
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [kdw] [ In reply to ]
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<quote> That is the only explanation I can think of for you making these posts.</quote>
Are you really unfamiliar with the concept of helping others to this extent ????





"Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative." Oscar Wilde
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks Barry,
Great post again, I just printed it to read it in Timmie's lineup ;)
Cheers



"Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative." Oscar Wilde
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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Barry, very nice post. It is very amazing how many try and find the shortcut, when this is pretty basic. Be patient, and consistent, and results come. Another great point in your post is the "don't try and fool yourself" part. Many athletes train way too fast on the longer stuff, as they don't understand the point of a long run.....not to be a sufferfest! Keep up the excellent posts, trying hard to get all of these bike oriented folks a decent run.....the race still is usually won on the run.

Gary Geiger
http://www.geigerphoto.com Professional photographer

Mark Allen Coaching Elite Team http://www.markallencoaching.com,KiWAMi NORTH AMERICA http://www.kiwamitri.com, Rudy Project http://www.rudyprojectusa.com, GU https://guenergy.com/shop/ ; Salming World Ambassador; https://shopsalmingusa.com
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [MuffinTop] [ In reply to ]
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But 7 - 12% seems like an awful lot of VO2max work for a triathlete.
______________________________

I agree that it may be high. I'm basing the value primarily off of what I know about how much triathletes run compared to what they would run if they were ONLY running. Also keep in mind that this is not for IM training. I'm not sure how many triathletes would be running 60 mpw if training for an Oly or Half IM.


Also note that in the previous paragraph I but that cap at 17 - 25 minutes. The 12% value probably assumes too much about the type of training that an athlete I haven't met is doing. Thanks for pointing it out. I'll make an edit.

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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Now that I got my coffee, I have a question too!.
Let's say for some reason an athlete's millage dropped 50% for some non injury (but perhaps need for recovery) reason. For the next week, does he/she have to build up again, or it is safe for him/her to resume his previous high millage.
One other question I have is for transitioning from base training, do you recommend to add temp runs first or hills or both ?
Thanks



"Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative." Oscar Wilde
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [kdw] [ In reply to ]
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Back when I was into martial arts, I would get yelled at from my team because I had a habit of giving away our secrets.

I figure I've taken off 20 seconds per 100 (or 13 minutes off an IM) in my swimming off of free advice in just the last year. I'm just trying to keep my Karma in balance! ; ^ )

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [legonis] [ In reply to ]
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"Are you really unfamiliar with the concept of helping others to this extent ????"

Lighten up, Francis.

Besides, I didn't start it:

http://forum.slowtwitch.com/gforum.cgi?post=1265035;search_string=duck;#1265035
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [legonis] [ In reply to ]
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Now that I got my coffee, I have a question too!.
Let's say for some reason an athlete's millage dropped 50% for some non injury (but perhaps need for recovery) reason. For the next week, does he/she have to build up again, or it is safe for him/her to resume his previous high millage.
One other question I have is for transitioning from base training, do you recommend to add temp runs first or hills or both ?
Thanks
__________________

If you are just taking a "down week," you should be able to jump right back into where you were before. However, if you were so fatigued that you needed to cut back by 50%, you may want to reconsider your previous training volume.

But, no, you certainly don't need to add 10% a week over 5 weeks to get back to where you were because you took an easy week. The 10% rule generally implies that you are at a comfortable training level.


Tempo running is THE #2 priority for your running. It can reasonably be done 7-10 months out of the year. Hill running, though important, serves a much, much lower priority. You can usually get away with just squeezing in 3-4 weeks of it before your 4-8 week V02max phase.

Keep in mind, you can ALWAYS do hilly runs. When I talk about hill training, I'm talking about focused sessions of runnin hard up a hill over and over again.

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [kdw] [ In reply to ]
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OK, hasbeenswimmer is out of the "lets run faster club!"

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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Question, I've read it takes roughly 10 years of consistent running to reach ones full running potential. Now assuming that you do not start too late and suffer performance degradation from natural aging how linear is this improvement over time.

For example, on similar or the same 1/2 marathon course, very similar conditions in early spring my times for have been as follows;

2004 - 1:39:00
2005 - 1:31:00
2006 - 1:26:00
2007 - 1:18:08*

Though the improvements look fairly consistent the volume of run training between each year has been increasing. 2006-2007 was probably double the millage of 2004-2005 combined.

I'd love to be able to drop another 6+ min off my time but I have a feeling even with increased millage things are going to slow down.

Thanks

---------------------------
http://www.nunnsontherun.com
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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The problem is he has given a lot of good swimming advice in the past, so unless he goes back and deletes those posts I'm afraid he has to stay...
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [kdw] [ In reply to ]
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<quote> Lighten up, Francis. </quote>
LOL I need to! I didn't get your tone, sorry.

Peace



"Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative." Oscar Wilde
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [kdw] [ In reply to ]
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Okay....he's in....but only if he repplies to the thread.

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [gavnunns] [ In reply to ]
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It all depends on how close to your potential your were training before.

Typically, if I look at a college bound runner who starts running at 14, this is what I'd see for 5K times:


18:00
17:00
16:30
16:00
15:30
15:00
14:40
14:20

and then another 5 years of trying to break 14:00.

For you, keep plugging along, but I'd be real surprised if you took another 6 minutes off this year. But at your speed, even 1-2 minutes would be a huge improvement.

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [legonis] [ In reply to ]
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The best part is when people start yelling at BarryP that he is full of crap. This thread may have gone the farthest yet without that happening. Good luck!
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [kdw] [ In reply to ]
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"The best part is when people start yelling at BarryP that he is full of crap."
- - It's hard to imagine that he could be. I know that running makes me more regular, and since I've upped my mileage considerably this year I've been able to cut back on my Metamucil...
Cousin "no longer full of crap" Elwood


Cousin Elwood - Team Over-the-hill Racing
Brought to you by the good folks at Metamucil and Geritol...
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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Also note that in the previous paragraph I but that cap at 17 - 25 minutes. The 12% value probably assumes too much about the type of training that an athlete I haven't met is doing.

Ah OK, my bad, I hadn't read that as a cap. That makes a lot more sense to me now. Still, wouldn't LT running be a lot more specific for a triathlete? I guess vo2max work is just a different way of accomplishing the same thing (ie. raising LT) and would allow you to do more work in less time. Hard to imagine being so time constrained that you needed to do vo2max work instead of LT work though :-)


--
Now working on software for coaches
http://www.coachulous.com | http://twitter.com/coachulous
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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [gavnunns] [ In reply to ]
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"2006 - 1:26:00
2007 - 1:18:08*"

Wow, that is a very good delta! Are you sure that the '07 course wasn't short??


: )

"I really wish you would post more often. You always have some good stuff to say. I copied it below just in case someone missed it." BarryP to Chainpin on 10/21/06

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Re: Runtraining5 - Some tips for the up and coming season [etocaj] [ In reply to ]
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The course was well measured as far as I can tell, they have a elite field 10k and Marathon on the same course which is a Boston Qualifier plus its all sanctioned. Effort wise it felt spot on and my splits where consistent until the last 2 mile when my legs started to cramp, it was also perfect race conditions for a PR.

I think the reason the delta is good, falls perfectly inline with what Barry is advocating with this post. IS that during the time between both races saw me increase run frequency and duration to 4-6 runs @ 30-45 miles per week. Add 5 x 1/2 Ironman then backed up with a winter of steady base training runs and you can't go far wrong. That and Mike Plumb has been coaching me ;)

---------------------------
http://www.nunnsontherun.com
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