The Run Focus

In preparation for the Emergency Services Games, I decided to test an approach I can use for other events. The gist of this approach is to stick to my standard weekly mix as the base. This standard I have explained over numerous posts over the last couple of months. Working from that consistent base I then add in a specific focus.

The idea is that I maintain a balanced and consistent overall improvement across all disciplines from maintaining my standard week. Then having only a short focus period I hope not to lose much in the swim and bike, but make a substantial jump in my running.

An added bonus is mentally I don't spend an extended amount of time concentrating on one event. Being fresh and inspired going into a race may pay big dividends. Also I am more likely to physically to be on the uphill curve towards a performance peak. The peak may not be quite as high as a more traditional build, but I am less likely to be overtrained or miss the peak and be on the steep performance descent on the other side.

The next hope is that I have only a small recovery requirement. This should mean I can get back into my standard week pretty quickly to maintain that overall improvement. If my running needs some extra rest afterwards and I can always stack the swimming and cycling a bit more.

As previously mentioned, a good portion of my run focus is being carried out while on holiday in Byron Bay. I think my running may be having some influence on my daughter.

YouTube Video

How has the running been going?

At the games I will be competing in the 10km Cross Country and the Half Marathon. Due to the types of races, plus the terrain involved I will be focussing on a strength-endurance type of build. The finesse of higher paced speed will probably be lost in these courses.

Hill running for the cross country and the ability to suffer-it-out for the 21.1km on gravel track at my goals. Over the last week and a bit the runs have been:
• 10km steady-state
• 6x800m hill repeats
- recovery / strength
• 8km steady-state over hills
• 8km hill & terrain work
• 6x1000m @ 10km pace w/45sec rec
• 15km steady-state
- recovery / strength
• 11km hill & terrain work
• 11km hill & terrain work
• 8km hill & terrain work

Plus warm up and cool down around these sessions. The hill and terrain work has been over the Byron Bay lighthouse trail, which is some very steep work, with stairs, sandy winding trails, and over tree roots. The legs have only occasionally felt completely wasted. For the most part, other than a few sore spots and a bit of stiffness I seem to be getting stronger each day. The final run on the lust was different story. Centrally I felt good, but my legs were really threatening to just fail on some ascents. I'll be curious to see how my runs back at home go over familiar courses in the few days before the games.

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