SC100 Training: Base 7


This was the main focus for the week. After a low number of kilometers (despite some of them being quite fast) last week and an average a bit below than what I really wanted for the first few weeks, I need to expand my endurance. My faster running is good, so I know that isn't being sacrificed. I wasn't too concerned with pace this week. Instead I looked for ways to get in extra distance and not drop a single session.

Day 1: Basic run 60min. Up early, short drive to work from which I start the run before the day officially starts at 0630. The run felt slow and comfortable so I was surprised to find my turnaround point at 30min substantially further than usual.

Day 2: Backpack on and 90min over the trails in the dark to work. I started feeling really good after getting past the hour mark. Usually a good sign that my endurance is improving.

Day 3: Another early start to fit in 2 hours. I made a point to keep the pace up throughout. "This is not a picnic." the first half was reasonably flat with only a few moderate hills. Second half was just about all up and down. Covering a certain series of hills I used to think was a massive task. Now they just don't seem to have any bite. While running them it was the difference between triathlete hills and trail runner hills. A very good run overall.

Day 4: Hills. Longer and steeper this week. A climb with stairs and dirt trail ranging 12-9% grade. Each repeat took about 2min using a springing plyometric style, followed by a 3min descent over a more gradual decline. I managed 6 repeats before I hit the end of my ability to generate that light explosiveness I was seeking. Over the previous weeks I've added a handful of flat strides then called it a day at this point. This time I took 5min easy running then came up with a slightly longer and improved hill circuit that I will probably use in the focus weeks. One run through took 9:30 and my legs were cactus for the cool down back home.

Day 5: Post nightshift and poor sleep thanks to screaming kidlets. I really didn't fell like running, but stuck with my goal of not dropping a run this week. A straight forward 60 minute basic run in the evening after the kids were in bed.

Day 6: Welcome to struggle town. It was likely a combination of being a bit down on sleep, maybe fighting off the respiratory infections everyone else has had, the increased mileage and the harder hill session two days ago. That, or it was just a bad day. Whatever the case, I just wasn't capable of hitting 4 hours. I attempted to give my body some respite and just went out for a very slow 60min.

Day 7: Not really feeling much better, I still got up early and headed out into the fog for my long run. Every step was a struggle. Other than feeling like I never properly woke up for the whole run, my legs hurt. It looks like they really took a beating in that hill session. They pulled up worse than from the race the previous week. Still I struggled through 3 hours at an embarrassing speed. Hopefully the right compromise between not driving myself deeper down into the ground and still getting in an adequate long session.

For the evening it was into the garage for a strength session. Focus on the large compound lifts stopping comfortably before failure in each set. A good dose of range of motion work plus tissue manipulation had my body feeling a lot better.

Day 8: Recovery. I needed it.

End Notes: Two weeks in a row where I've dropped the length of the long run. Different reasons each time, but I really have to make sure it doesn't happen again. It is the most important session for SC100. Despite a bad three days I still got about 120km covered over the week. Next week is my last in the Base phase. I want to keep the mileage up, but of greatest importance is getting in a full quality long run. Knocking 5-10% off the top end intensity in the faster runs might allow me to do that. After that things get more race specific and the hard/easy contrast increases in the Focus phase.


  1. I think you deserve a round of applause for fighting through all this, getting up early, running tired, sleepy. Be careful with the potential for a URI, is my only advice and keep the flame alive out there in the fog.

    1. Don't know about a round of applause. I do train/race because I enjoy it, but sometimes it gets a lot harder. Improvement doesn't come without those harder days. Striking balance between pushing my body enough versus too far was the reason I took day 8 off. Hopefully it was enough to allow adequate recovery.


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