Friday, August 22, 2008

The Plan

Transition Phase 24 Aug 10/6 Part of back to back
Transition Phase 01 Sep 8 mile race
Transition Phase 07 Sep 10/7 Part of back to back

Peak Phase 10 Sep Volume Speed (3 X 2 mile ?)
Peak Phase 14 Sep 10 mile race
Peak Phase 24 Sep 1000s
Peak Phase 28 Sep 10/10 Part of back to back
Peak Phase 01 Oct Pickups
Peak Phase 05 Oct 8K race

Taper Phase 15 Oct 1000s
Taper Phase 19 Oct 10/10 Part of back to back

Race 02 Nov NYC Marathon




Eleven major workouts over the next eight weeks looks simple on paper. The goal is not to do them perfectly but not to make too many mistakes so that Mike's good base condition comes crashing down. What type of mistakes are to be avoided? The transition phase above is what Lydiard called his hill phase. Mike has already started this phase and includes his regular runs with short (30 second to 2 minute) low volume (2 minutes worth) every 15 minutes. In addition depending how he feels ankle flexion, high knees and or leg drive drills on the hills. What are the goals? The small amounts of speed and or hills will get his legs ready for the peaking phase. The first mistake to avoid is not to do too much volume of speed until the body makes the initial changes. Jumping into speed training without this transition period is the most likely cause of injury or over training.

During the peak phase the primary emphasis is to speed up Mike's ability to process lactate (Lydiard called it the volume speed stage, the first half of his speed training) With the preliminary speed work done the body can now take larger loads of lactate producing work. Some where between 90% and 97% of marathon pace lactate processing becomes important. The ability to shuttle lactate out of the muscle to be processed in other parts of the body is the primary goal. A mistake to be avoided here is trying to run a certain pace without regard to how the runner is reacting to it. Runners can identify the pace that they are processing lactate well, no one can know before hand on how that day is going, trying to stick to some preconceived pace will lead to tearing down the gains in the efficiencies that were build during the base.

The workouts during the taper phase are done with full recovery and emphasis on coordinating the previous speed training. These workouts should be the best (because of the lighter loads) and feel the easiest. As Lydiard said fresh and sharp. As Mike goes through these major workouts I'll add additional commentary on the outcomes.

3 comments:

Abadabajev said...

Why is so much emphasis placed on the heart rate monitor is beyond me.

American runners were the dominant force in the 60's 70's until two things happened. 1) the new shoe and 2) the heart rate monitor.

When was the last time you saw an Ethiopian wear a HRM?

Too many variable can affect the heart rate on any given day. Temperature, humidity, mortgage payments, sick child, job stress, dehydration etc...


Am I wrong or just old fashioned?

Mike said...

Abadabajev, your point is certainly noted. Starting these back to back marathon pace runs by heart rate is something new we're doing this time around, and I think it has some value in my case.

As Mystery Coach noted, "A mistake to be avoided here is trying to run a certain pace without regard to how the runner is reacting to it. Runners can identify the pace that they are processing lactate well, no one can know before hand on how that day is going, trying to stick to some preconceived pace will lead to tearing down the gains in the efficiencies that were build during the base."

In the past I've tended to ignore how I'm feeling in favor of trying to nail specific paces on these early pace runs, and as such I've run myself a bit past the purpose of the workout in the process. I think by focusing on heart rate here (at least for awhile), we'll be able to both dial in the proper paces and ensure I don't overdo it by chasing a pace over my red-line as a run progresses.

I don't think any particular measurement is absolutely the best, so why not combine heart rate, pace and perceived exertion? We'll be integrating all three, but getting some baselines on things like heart rate early should help.

fred said...

"Runners can identify the pace that they are processing lactate well"

Does this mean the point where I am unable to breath deeply and regularly, begin to lose coordination, and start tightening up? It's hard for me to pinpoint that moment...