The Last For (a training) Effect

There are only a few days between injury recovery and the official start of my taper. I need to fight the urge to prove myself with a few ridiculously hard training bouts. So instead of pushing my limits and trying to add that little bit of extra fitness, I'll play things relatively safe and train within my limits. I a physiologically very fit, but as is usual, the weak link is connective tissue. My lower right leg has few issues which cannot be fully rectified in the next two weeks. So I have to keep this in mind with the last few key sessions.

As a result, I've had to wrap my mind around the concept that I'm maintaining my fitness instead of improving it. With acceptance of this idea, things to do get easier. It takes less training to maintain a performance level, than it does to reach it in the first place.

The result is three last sessions.
  1. Threshold
  2. Long Aerobic
  3. VO2 Intervals

I've left out the anaerobic work, as the injury risk is too great versus the limited return.

Already the first two sessions can be marked off. The threshold run was performed last Friday and consisted of 16km overall, with 10km run as a progression around my anaerobic threshold, resulting in a pace varying from 4:00 to 3:45/km. It felt natural to run this quick.

The long aerobic run was simply an easy, but steady run over the Diamond Creek trail. An out and back run I have completed many times. I chose the turnaround to give me 23km, which at the planned effort level usually takes me about 2 hours. Today it felt extra easy and I finished in 1:50. Also my HR was sitting about 10bpm lower than usual.

This leaves the VO2 intervals on Wednesday. The plan is simply 6x1000m, with 200m float recovery (instead of the 400m I have taken recently). Then the taper begins from Thursday. Where the focus is purely on ensuring I arrive at the marathon start line, healthy, fit, recovered and race ready. Considering I am close to my best ever fitness, that task shouldn't be too difficult.


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