Specific

Time flies. No longer training to train. It is now time to crank the pace up and do the race specific training. The aerobic and structural base has been rebuilt. The structure around threshold paces has been developed. Now it's time to further enhance the threshold speed, increase speed and tolerance paces up towards the maximal oxygen uptake, and develop the ability to actually race.

Back at the start of base training I had reasonably good idea how the Specific period would go. Now having a few months training under the belt, things haven't changed much. There are some changes. As discussed in "Back In" I have altered my HR zones. I will be sticking with these. The rest of the training will go as follows:

Four 7-9 day cycles of dedicated specific training, followed by a three cycle peaking program. Each of the four specific cycles will have the following key sessions:
  • Long run of 2 hours 132-149bpm
  • Threshold run of 60 min @ 150-160+
  • Threshold intervals 2x20min with 5, 4, 3 and 2 min rec (reduced each week) @ 160-170bpm
  • Interval session on the track, starting with 2x3000m progressing to 6x1000m with paces originally at 10km race pace, progressing to goal 5000m pace. Recovery will be 3-5min jog. HR will likely climb above the 170 mark, but isn't as important as speed.
  • Speed drills
  • Test of either MAF or 400m TT
  • Moderate strength training x 2 (45min)
  • All other runs will be very easy 40-60min, relaxed sessions.

Written out like this, it all looks a bit daunting. However, I am recuperating from my long runs very well, with the ability to run a good hard session the following day. The MAF test is only a moderate sessions and I am recovered well and truly by the next day. The speed drills are about technique and speed. They are not ability anaerobic tolerance, so are more likely to have me feeling fresh at the end. That essentially leave 3 key runs spread out over 7-9 days. Hard, tiring, painful, but still quite doable.

Plus it is only four cycles of very hard work. Followed by a peak phase that should allow full recovery and sharpening leading into race week.

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