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Showing posts from June, 2012

SC100 Training: Base 6

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This week was mixed up a little to accommodate racing. I kept in mind that I'm still in base training so I didn't want to taper sharply or have extended recovery after the race. Instead I the aim was to keep the training moderate leading in and then ensure I kept the kilometers up post race.

Day 1: am: Basic run 60min
pm: Weights
Day 2: off - due to work/family. Allowed me to shake off the stiffness that's been consistently building over the last week.
Day 3: am: Basic run 75min
Day 4: am: Race Salomon Trail #1 10.8km + warm up and cool down.
Day 5: off. Post nightshift, sleep
Day 6: pm: Long 2hr.
Day 7: am: Basic 90min
Day 8: off. extra nightshift again

The really good thing about my basic runs is that all I have to do is get out and run. I may have some generalised goal like aiming to keep the intensity towards the higher end of my aerobic conditioning range, but the most important thing is I just run. Usually I don't check my heart rate during the run. I'm also …

Salomon Trail Race #1 Yarra Bend

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First race since I started the program for the 100km. So I've had 5x8-day weeks of base training. The training has been going well, and I know my general fitness is good. Yet there is a big difference between training fitness versus racing fitness. I was curious to see what I could pull off for a 10.8km trail event. Details here.


The weather was perfect. Cool and sunny. With all the recent wet weather there was a lot more mud on the course this year. Enough to add time on the clock. How much is up for argument, but I'll suggest between 30-60 seconds depending on technical running skill. Last year I wore my Brooks T7 Racers which always feel fast, but they were destroyed by the terrain. Clearly made for the bitumen. This time around I opted for my Brooks Cascadia which don't have that go fast feel, but are built to withstand the course and have that extra grip for the mud.

The plan was to not go out ridiculously fast like last time. Just run out at what feels like race pac…

SC100 Training: Base 5

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Now into the second half of my Base training. Even though it is still four 8-day weeks left, it is really the last chance to get myself ready to handle the training I want to get done in the Specific phase. The first four weeks have gone pretty well. There is a good level of improvement and relatively good tolerance of my key sessions. The plan for the rest of Base is to keep the key sessions (long runs, hill plyometrics) ticking over with some progression. In between I want to increase the workload a fair bit to build that tolerance. Of course this will be done with the view of not sacrificing the long runs and ensuring injury prevention and recovery is still being achieved. Basically I want to increase my baseline load, which will hopefully lead to better ability to absorb the harder training to come.



So what did Base Week 5 look like?

Day 1: am: Basic run 50min
Day 2: pm: Basic run treadmill 40min
Day 3: am: Hill 10x 1:00 springing-3:00 high cadence recovery. Stairs and trail 8-12…

Artificial Trails

In the outer north east suburbs of Melbourne I have access to wide collection of trails. Over the last few years some of my more regular dirt excursions have been paved over with bitumen and evening out of the gradient. Something about access for everyone. Also the longer main trails are usually covered with concrete and bitumen.

So what do I do if I want to run completely off road?

I link up sections of some brilliant trails which are usually a mixture of horse trails and mountain bike trails, but in some areas are nothing more than almost undefined tracks left by the local kangaroos.

What about the links?

Often I love running on the road as well. However, since I am preparing for a trail ultra I want to keep a good number of runs on the rough as much as possible. The answer for me is to use what I call artificial trails. These are the shoulders and side areas of otherwise paved tracks. Nature strips, grass buffers, churned up ground from building sites and basically any section that…

SC100 Training: Base 4

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Felt good right at the start of week. Typically the 1st day involves running to and from work, but the plans changed this week. Other commitments meant I couldn't run home so I fitted all the running in before my 0630 work start. An aerobic run with a few strides and sprints at the track had me firing for the rest of the day.

In contrast to the very early start, the second day had me running late in the evening. Back into the hill springing. By far my best session. The exaggerated range of motion felt natural. I had good power each stride. The combination made for some relatively quick ascending. Maybe it was difference of running in the evening instead of the morning, but I do think I am just getting better on the hills.

And on the third day I was up early in the morning to get my mid-long run in. The legs were tired and fairly sore throughout the run, and to be honest I just didn't want to be out there. However, I forced back all the excuses and kept the legs moving. That g…

SC100 Training: Base 3

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After dropping a couple of days running last week, it was important to try and ensure I keep the volume up this week. Dopping a bit of the lower grade running, but keeping the main sessions will see improvement in the those key runs in the short term. The problem is doing so will limit some of the supportive adaptions that are needed to really push the longer runs later in the program and still be able to recover.

Not so much sleep deprivation at the start of this week. A double aerobic run. 8km into work and 6km back home. My legs were suffering from the long run two days ago. In my concern about how the run related to the 100km I had failed to realise it had been my longest ever training run. Being sore today was quite reasonable when put into this context.

Next day was my MAF test. The legs were still stiff, and my resting heart rate was up slightly. Likely influenced by the sinus infection my body was trying to eliminate. The test pace turned out to 4:57/km. Only one second per ki…

Endurance Threshold

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This is a concept I began thinking about a few years. Since that time it developed into a usable tool. This post was sparked by Aidan asking if I find the MAF test correlates well with race performance. It is all related to the way I train and what I use as a guide to progression.

To explain the endurance threshold, it is how far you can go at a certain pace until there is a significant increase in effort/intensity to be able to maintain that pace. The pace can usually be maintained beyond this point, but it is obviously much harder to do so. Joe Friel has referred to this as decoupling. His explanation is worth a read, plus the adaption for running on Ultrarunning. For me, I believe I use the concept slightly differently, and without all the extra in-depth analysis that he seems to take it.

Basically it comes back to developing enough stamina to maintain the appropriate pace for the distance required.

A personal example of establishing my endurance threshold was my marathon pb in 200…