Goal: 1:55, and perhaps a 0:50 and a 4:30 along the way
Well I think it’s high time I tested my grasp of Charlie and others’ training plans, so here goes a semi-anonymous chronicle of this running season. Many thanks in advance to all who follow and comment on the experience.
Annual Plan: This will be a single-periodized training year, as many remedial elements have been ignored in seasons past, and must now have time to develop without the rush of double-periodization. Aerobic elements are structured long-to-short, per a traditional distance approach. Anaerobic elements are setup short-to-long, taking guidance from Charlie’s writings. Strength will focus first on deficiencies, then general>maximum>maintenance. The oly lifts will form the backbone of the gym work.
September to present: Aerobic: Volume has been the focus, working up to 6 hours of easy running per week. Long LT intervals of 15-20 minutes have been used for the past month to segue into upcoming aerobic strength work. Anaerobic: Easy runs have occasionally included short fartlek. One dedicated speed endurance hillsprint session per week of 10x~10sec (2-5min recovery). Only trying to maintain coordination and % of fast-twitch fibers. Strength: Deficiencies in the lower back and wrist, plus a volume of 3-5 general strength sessions per week, plus some light medball and jump-up plyos. Specific work on the lower back includes static holds in various positions. Wrist work consists of wrist curls, grippers, rubber band expansion, and levered dumbell lifts.
December: The above components will be continued, with the goal of preparing for increasing intensity in the new year.
Racing: A winter series of 5-mile xc races. Average pace has improved from 7:15/mi to 7:00/mi pace since October. Just having fun with these.
Joel, I’ll be training parallel with you. My program looks extremely similar to yours. I look forward to being able to exchange info during the season. Do you have an end-date or big race you’re planning for?
P.S. The frowny face on your thread is bad pyschic energy, or some such. Maybe he’s just distressed. Yes, little Sammy Smilie, just a bit distressed. Wait Wilson? What’s up with Wilson?
When I saw your new journal, it motivated my own, and I thought it might be helpful to have another middle distance journal on the boards. Can’t sit back and lurk forever. Definitely will be fun to watch these things progress the next few months.
Not having any sort of school team to compete with, my main comp is a late summer series of all-comers track meets, running from late May to the beginning of August. In keeping with the short to long approach, it looks like 400 races in May, 800 races in June/July, and a season closing 1500/mile in August. 5-milers for the winter and a couple of 5ks for the early spring.
So I think you’ll be coming out of your base period a lot sooner than I will.
A dedicated SE hillsprint day and an easy run for yesterday and today. Also a couple of gym workouts for general strength; here are some highlights:
Deads 70kg x 8
Front and Back squat 70kg x 10
Dumbbell Military 50’s (lbs.) x 10
Dumbbell Rows 70’s x 10
-rounded out with core, wrist, and shoulder work
I remember when deadlifting/squatting any amount of weight hurt the back and strained the hamstrings. No pain anymore; those static holds are working. Shoulder flexibility used to limit the pressing as well. Things are coming along.
Re: Coe and Kipketer - The 800m record holders are cursed. Perhaps no other event is as different with rounds and one-off races as the 8.
An easy run today and long LT intervals yesterday.
The Long LT intervals are basically 2 x Anaerobic Threshold Pace for 15-20 minutes with a 5 minute jog in between. The idea being to increase LT pace over time, run with better form than easy runs, and provide a greater aerobic stimulus in less time.
Last night’s was 20 min at 6:45/mi followed by 13 min @ 7:00/mi. A certain mid-afternoon snack conspired to cut this workout short! :eek:
Finally got to the medball throws and plyos. They are hard to schedule because they require driving out to a special place with a good field and a wall for jump-up plyos. They also mandate only easy work afterwards and the following day.
Had some good throws, alternating between a 3-lb and an 8-lb rubber ball. All the GPP DVD throws plus shot puts and discus tosses with the balls.
Jumps went well, too. Practiced single and double-leg jumps onto a brick wall at varying heights. Topped out at 44" on the double-leg hop with a one step walkup.
Mixed extensive tempo between sets, and finished the workout with 4 miles easy.
No posts lately; it’s been a busy holiday. Traded up one set of used wheels for another. Drove 800 miles one way to subject myself to the slickster salesman! Glutton for punishment…
Some totals from the last 2 weeks: Looks like two unloading weeks
12/11-12/17: Ran three and a half hours including two threshold runs; four lifting workouts, one medball/plyo session
12/18-12/24: Ran three and a quarter hours including a two-hour long run and a short hillsprint day; one lifting workout
This week: three hours in the bank already with one threshold run; three lifting workouts and one medball/plyo session
-Will try to squeeze another threshold and hillsprint in before a new year’s day 5-miler
Just upgraded the adjustable dumbbells from 75lbs. max to 120lbs. max. Got over-exuberant with the step-ups Thursday and am paying the price. The knee was really smarting yesterday. Had been doing 70’s x10 for weeks with ease and felt compelled to try 90’s x8. Shoulda done 80’s…:(. Hope to be healed by tomorrow’s race; easy run today.
5-mile xc today: 31:07 (6:30/mi avg.). In relative terms this was a good result for me. Race pace has quickened from an initial season start of 7:15/mi. The knee behaved, though I’ll be tentative with the step-ups in the future. Will be introducing long hill repeats for the next two months as an aerobic focus.
Beginnings of the VO2max focus via long hill repeats. Started with 5x3min(3min jog back) averaging about 6:00/mi. Will work up to 5min repeats over the next couple of months. First run by headlamp! The best hill in the area (1.5 miles gentle grade dirt) is in the middle of a national park, and it gets dark here soon after work.
More oly lifts in the weight room: Snatch 50kg, C+J 60kg, Clean 70kg. I’m new to these lifts and they are an unusual animal. The weights above were not too difficult, but adding even 5kilos more to any of the lifts made them impossible to control/perform.
Transition to VO2max focus continues, while balancing with threshold runs, short hillsprints, and a weekly long run. Mileage steady at 45-50 weekly. May try to add a few morning runs to reach 60.
Strength training remains focused on achieving proficiency in the olympic lifts, while rounding out with general weightlifting, static holds for the core, wrist strengthening, medball throws, and jump-up plyos. Wrist curls up to 80lbs x 8. Still trying to decide what will become the MaxStrength movements when that time arrives. Leaning towards Snatch, Incline Dumbbell Press, and the Back Squat. If I had spotter racks I might go Bench instead of Incline Dumbell Press. Perhaps a little more woodworking lies ahead?
Training has been consistently strong the past few weeks. 40-45 mile weeks with few missed sessions.
VO2max development has taken center stage. The core workout is 4 miles at 5:30-6:00 pace, divided into intervals as long as four minutes each with same time recovery.
Speed remains in maintenance with short accelerations during easy runs and the occasional dedicated hillsprint day of 10x~10sec with 3-5 minute recovery.
Weightlifting has seen the most improvement. Finally starting to tolerate 5-6 weekly sessions. Narrowed down the workouts to a handful of core lifts.
Upper body days:
-warmup (aided push ups and pullups)
-military press and unaided pullups)
-incline press and dumbell rows (session A)
-bench press and shrugs (session B)
Lower body days:
-snatches and assorted squat styles (session A)
-cleans and deadlift (session B)
And throwing things is a blast! Seriously, medballs weren’t enough so I bought a dinged up discus off eBay. There may be a hammer in the future, too.
For the next month and a half: VO2 work, a 4-mile race, and then a transition to a short to long GPP with MaxStrength weights and Acceleration speed workouts.
The VO2 focus may have been a bit premature. After moving to 2x week I’m starting to get a little flat. Time to back up a tad with a bit more threshold and some mileage to support the extra VO2 training.
Raced a 4-mile today with disappointing results. 25:21, which averages out to 6:15/mi pace. This is an improvement of 0:15/mi from Jan. 1, but not what I was hoping for. Also didn’t kick courageously at the end and got beaten unecessarily. I’ll remember the bitter taste of that lack of effort for a while as motivation.
Looking to add morning runs over the next month for mileage support.
Thanks palmtag. By flat I meant more difficult to run quickly, as you say. The pop and rhythm weren’t there as before. Pace slowed from 5:45-6:00 to 6:15-6:30 at the same perceived effort level. I just think that 40-45 mile weeks is too little for 2x week VO2 workouts which are up to an hour long each. The base isn’t there to support it. But I will run thin on aerobic-building time soon (end of March) and move to the short-to-long anaerobic progression.
Raced 19:20 for a hilly 3-mile over the weekend. (6:26/mi pace)… Course was tough but still expecting better aerobic ability at this point in the base phase. Hopefully I’ll see the payoff during the track season.
2-mile track run coming up in a couple of weeks. Last distance race before setting up the short to long progression.
Long runs have started interfering with the explosive components of the program. LT and VO2 runs aren’t as crisp, oly lifts and plyos aren’t nearly as well executed, persistent joint soreness; looking to replace the long run with shorter doubles. One element can’t run all the others out of town.