Wednesday, October 26, 2005


Today I ended my run-less streak at 10 days. What a great day to start running again. I met Mary at Lake Harriett just after 4:30. It was about 50 degrees, sunny, and calm. I told Mary I could handle 6-8 miles. We did a lap around Lake Harriett and one around Lake Calhoun in 59 minutes and called it 7 miles.

You know how you take a couple days off in a row and your first run back feels like you’ve never run a step before in your life? Well I didn’t feel that way at all. The pace was nice and easy and I felt smooth the whole way. Let’s see how I bounce back tomorrow.

During my break I was going to sit down with Daws’ book and a calendar and make up my plan for next year. After reading some of the recent comments on the infamous Lydiard or Daniels thread, I think I’m better off just having a general idea of what I want to accomplish with each phase and then listening to my body along the way. I don’t think it makes sense for me to write down 70 miles for a week that’s 2 months away. How do I know how I’ll feel at that point?

Since I seem to race well just on mileage and strong aerobic runs and since that’s the emphasis in Lydiard’s conditioning phase, I’m going to focus on taking my time building mileage. If I need to push the hill phase back 1-2 weeks or cut my anaerobic work down by 1-2 weeks, that’s fine.

The last time I probably wrote about my training I was struggling between two things regarding my upcoming conditioning phase; 1) keeping my mileage around 70 mpw and adding more, stronger aerobic runs or 2) trying to get my mileage in the 85-100 mpw range even if it means sacrificing those important stronger aerobic runs.

I emailed Nobuya “Nobby” Hashizume, who studied under Lydiard and he said;

The balance between mileage and the effort, or speed, is very much individual thing. Some react better when it's slower and just pile up mileage; others respond better with higher effort and, therefore, less mileage. You will need to experiment yourself. Natural progression should be such that you just run a lot at whatever the pace you can manage (slow at first) and, as you get fitter, the pace quickens…My suggestion would be; try 85-100 at comfortable speed--meaning quite slow at first. Then see how much stronger/faster you'll get. If you feel absolutely stuffed and can't keep up the effort, you should cut down the mileage down to where you started, say, 70 or so.

So, 85-100 mpw it is. Right now my goal is just to build up my mileage with all easy runs. I’m going to “jump in” around 45-50 mile this week and see how that feels.


E-Speed said...

WOW! I am such a low mileage fan. I cannot FATHOM running 100 mpw. I think I maxed out for Boston Training around 52 and got injured because of it!

For me it seems that 25-40 mpw plus cross training is key.

Weird how some people respond so differently to different programs.

Glad the first run out was a good one!

Chad said...

Well I haven't responded to anything yet. My max is 85 miles in week. I've only been over 80 about 8 times in my life. Last year I averaged 65-70 during my base phase.

I'm just tired of "sucking" and want to try something that has worked for so many other people. I figure I don't really have anything to lose. One less 37-39 minute 10k runner in my age group won't make a difference. One more sub-36 (or better) 10k runner might.

Mileage alone probably isn't the cause of injuries. How fast were you running those miles? Where did they occur in your training program? How did you work up to that mileage? Those things play a part too.

Anonymous said...

Good plan!

Now is a nice time of year to get started, as the temperatures are pretty much ideal, and you can get into a good mileage routine before the snow comes. Much as I enjoy winter running starting a buildup in January isn't great timing.

I think I mentioned this once, but last winter my buildup went like this: 3 weeks at 75, 60, 3 weeks at 82-84 (250 miles in three weeks), 70, 3 weeks at 90, 75 including winter half marathon, 60. Then I started Daniels' Plan A, and the mileage dropped initially (to 80) as I added in tempos etc. Got up to 100 about six weeks into that.

That three weeks up, one week down arrangement worked well for the ascent from 75 to 100. I think 75-80 is a bit of a 'sweet spot' in the mileage, as it's about where a lot of people start to find doing it all in singles is tiring or difficult to schedule. I think Pfitzinger's recommendation is that 75 is about where marathoners need to think about doubles.

Chad said...

Hey Evan, I've used "3 weeks on, 1 week off" in the past with success. I'll probably do that this year too. Last year, with my coach, I was bouncing up and down; 70, 60, 75, 65, 80, etc. It "worked" in the sense I never felt exhausted, but I'm not sure if I was ever running tired (in a good way) either.

Thanks for the Pfitz link, I'll check it out. 75 in singles is probably all I can get in anyway. Anymore than that and I'd have to get up earlier than 4:30 - every day.