Friday, August 22, 2008

15k-1/2 Marathon

This is an eight week training table for a 15k-1/2marathon racer. For a Monday through Sunday running week, if this is started on Monday September first it will work out to race day for the White Mountain Milers 23rd annual half marathon on Sunday the 26th of October. The last three weeks are all setup for peak racing.
This plan can be played with so have fun and take what works for you. The weeks are setup with two workouts a week, except with week five which has a heavy load single track work out and week eight which allows for some rest and exact tapering (this actually starts with planning the workout(s) for week seven earlier in the week). One workout for each week, often A, is on the roads and the other, normally B, is an anearobic threshold (AT) track run or repeat.
If you can only fit one workout in a week try and do the B one that is listed. The other emphasized run is a long run. The table and long run distances are designed for a runner who is doing at least four or five runs a week and 30miles or more. Also they should have been doing this for a minimum of four to six weeks before endeavoring on this training regiment.
A sample week might be an easy Monday seven miler, a hard 5k on Tuesday, a 20minute shake out on Wednesday, one day off, a thirty minute tempo run at the track on Thursday or a ten mile progression run on the roads, an easy five miles on Friday, a day off, and finish with an easy long run on Sunday with a three or four 30 second 5k-10k pace strides afterwards.
Occasionally you can replace a long run with a work out. Examples are a forty minute tempo run with a two mile cool down and two mile warm up or a 10-14 mile progression run. However, it would behoove you to already be comfortable covering 9-15 miles at a conversational pace and then supplement these workouts to the week while maintaining a weekly easy long run.
I do mean easy. All runs that aren’t workouts should be kept to a conversational pace and a long run that isn’t a progression run is an easy run. In fact it helps to think of easy running in terms of time spent doing it. You are trying to elevate the heart rate for a prolonged period of time, so going faster minimizes that amount of time. I know sometimes you just want to get out there and open up after an irritating day, well do it controlled. Go tackle a hilly loop, and hit the up hills hard. The following days we recover from uphill running very quickly and conversely often poorly after downhill running. So run controlled down those hills. In my experience a planned guideline without too much deviation often brings the best success but I’m not trying to tell you to make running boring.
Another thing to be discussed is the pacing. A PR or progression run is what it sounds like it is. Go out over a favorite loop. I’ve done the WMM ½ course, or a ten or 12 mile section of it, for a few progression runs. If you are interested in knowing your pace this is a great way to get mile splits as they are spray painted on West Side road. The PR is started like a normal easy long run. As you get 15-30minutes into it start to pick up the pace. Mile by mile go notch by notch and increase the pace.
A PR workout should be fun, like a race that you’re running all by your self so push yourself as hard as you want, while knowing you can always keep going. You want to try and avoid going out too fast and then slowing down, hence why it should be fun. You want to be rested and relaxed beforehand. During the effort always know you have another gear. The end of a progression run shouldn’t be a kick either but a 10-15 minute slow down. If you want to add some speed then do some 20 or 30 second strides at 5k-10k pace afterwards. Always give yourself two or three easy running or rest days before a PR and three or four afterwards.
As far as AT or anaerobic threshold runs go, they are designed track workouts. If you refer to the 5k training table equations in an earlier posted blog, and apply them here, you will find the proper pacing. If you are reading this and haven’t run at our trail series or have improved fitness, contact me and we will adjust your pacing accordingly. If you are reading this and haven’t already read the 5k training table I suggest doing so. It outlines some things omitted here.
Easy days before a AT w/o are important but not as much as with a PR, and the days afterwards are contingent on how much you tackle during the AT workout. For example, you run a hard 5k at Whitaker Woods on Tuesday. That Thursday you want to do the AT w/o of repeat two miles. This is fine, but there are some points to remember.
First off, the AT pace is in a window so you can always go on the slower paced side for more time running or to get an extra two mile in. Secondly, the repeats are themselves in a window so do the lower end slower if need be. Thirdly, and often the case, your legs will warm up and you will end up doing more two miles than you thought and faster than you believed. Following this rest or easy days are VERY important. If you go hard Tuesday and then baby a Thursday workout you’re good with the regular two or three days. However, if you hit Tuesday and Thursday hard then make sure you get three or four rest or easy days before doing something hard again and for some of you a long run might be considered hard. A long run could be one of the later days, like day three or four but should be given a little time, unless you are a high mileage person, following such a rigorous three day training block.
The other paces listed are H or hard, R or Rest, and GLY or Glycolytic. H running can be done over any terrain and is the intensity on that terrain that you could keep up for about 15minutes. R is walking or running or even standing still. It is recovery time. GLY is the pace that you can keep up for between 60-90 seconds, essentially not quite sprinting, so focus on your running form.
As always please contact me with any questions.

Weeks One - Eight
Long run
A Workout
B Workout

Week One
Long run ~ 9-15miles
A workout ~ 8-10 X 2minH 1minR or a 5k-10k race
B workout ~ 20-40minAT then 5-10minR then 4x400 AT with 2minR in between each 400meter

Week Two
Long run ~ 9-15miles
A Workout ~ 8-14mile PR
B Workout ~ 4-6 X mile AT with 2minR in between each mile OR a 15k-1/2 race

Week Three

Long run ~ 9-15miles
A Workout ~ 6-8 X 3minH 1minE OR a 5k-10k race
B Workout ~ 20-40minAT then 5-10minR then 300meters GLY OR a 15k-1/2 race

Week Four

Long run ~ 9-15miles
A Workout ~ 10-14mile PR
B Workout ~ 2-4 X 2mileAT with 3minR in between each 2mile OR a 15k-1/2 race

Week Five
Long run ~ 11-15miles
A Workout ~ Rest before and after the next one
B Workout ~ 15minAT 3minR 10minAT 2minR 5minAT 1minR 15minAT 5minR 10minAT 3minR 5minAT

Week Six
Long run ~ 9-14miles
A Workout ~ 6-8mile PR
B Workout ~ Race OR 2-4 X 2mileAT with 5minR in between each 2mile

Week Seven
Long run ~ 9-13miles
A Workout ~ 6-8mile PR
B Workout ~ Race OR 4-6 X 1000meterAT with 2minR in between each 1000meter (don't go too fast on these 1000's)

Week Eight
Long run ~ 8-12miles
A Workout ~ Three T Miles then three to five easy running days with no Long Run
B Workout ~ Race the WMM Half Marathon!

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