Friday, September 24, 2010

Friday altitude relief

5 miles average pace 6:38. Average HR 134. I messed around for the first couple of miles then tried to elevate HR upwards of 145-155 (this is 20-30 beats below my lactate threshold which is my new 'MAF'. More on this later. But this HR range is very moderate in terms of intensity). On the flats I was rolling at ~6:10 pace at HR 150... it felt awkward and fast and I need to get back that feel for running fast but not having it feel fast. This is almost entirely neuromuscular and this aspect of fitness responds very quickly to specific training. Today was a very solid benchmark for my fitness heading in to a marathon training block.
 This run also illustrates why I was discouraged heading in to Chicago last year. Living up high and particularly in one of the hilliest places ever (there are literally only a few meters of flat terrain in the entire area) makes it tough to train my muscles to handle the pace of the marathon. In order to run 5:30 pace for 26 miles I have to train my muscles to be able to move in that specific pattern for over 2 hours. I have had a year to mull this over and I have some great ideas for the next 17 weeks of training. I also have adapted amazingly well (see my workout from Tuesday) to the altitude and the hills. I feel much more confident that I can benefit from living where I do...    


Brett said...

In your experience, 6:10 pace now at HR 150 shows very good potential to be at 5:30 marathon pace within a couple months after doing more race specific work doesn't it?

Exciting to see what you can rip off in your next marathon...

GZ said...

Interesting stuff.

I have found (*occasionally*) that some of my fixed HR runs are uncomfortable as of late. In other words they are not easy. This is not because the cardio effort is too hard (I cap these at 150) but instead because the turn over feels foreign. So, as you alluded to recently, there is hardly any effort in the lungs but the legs are asking "WTF?"

I agree that it is a familiarity with that sort of work. However, I have not yet unraveled a way to get a quick response to training specifically tap back into that turn over (which is in part why I am considering things like plyos - as I have not tried that yet).

I am interested in hearing how you'd tackle that.

Lucho said...

Brett- I've certainly been much faster at lower HR's in the past and fell well short of my marathon potential. I think it is mostly a volume thing where before I was fixated on the total number of miles I ran each week and I neglected listening to my body and how it was responding to the mileage... and I fell short of my racing potential. We'll see how I go next year! I think it will be my best year ever though. I have been looking forward to turning 40 for several years an dI am super motivated to run low 2:2X as a master.

Gz- I could write for hours on this subject and in particular, the needs of us aging runners in either holding our speed or even developing it. Maybe soon we can chat on a long run. I am confident though that you already know what you need to. Your 200's the other day are a huge key. Plyo's are good for strength and have a little benefit to the neuromuscular coordination... but drills would be better. Basically in order to be able to run fast you have to run fast often. Strides are the ideal. Doing 4-5 X 10" sprints, 2-3 times per week and then building on to the duration every month. No need to go beyond 30".

GZ said...

Yeah - I think it is exactly that - doing the stride work and the drill work more often. Good stuff.

Uli said...

Hope all is well.
Am _very_ curious too hear your thoughts. You know what? It's been a year we ran together last time!

Yes, speed is key to a better marathon. That said, I got sucked into Comrades which is May 30...
Then again, watched 5th Ave Mile yesterday and it made me think I should dedicate a year to the Mile.

Well, first it's NYC again, hoping to go from 233 to 231. And now that I have flyer miles, I'll also do Fukuoka four weeks later...

Anyway, how can I motivate myself to dedicate at least 6 month to Mile training? I mean, I ran a 4:41 last year during marathon training so I believe all I could maybe do is a sad 4:30. But when I look at the 5th ave results, you have all these kids going 4:2X without even training specifically for it.

=>massive work, small immediate reward. worth long term? how not to lose motivation?



p.s. am on my way to kona, my wife is racing. wifi in the air somewhere btw Dallas and LA. good stuff.
you know what? i wouldn't even want to race IM anymore. feels great. will run the trails at haleakala and ride up mauna kea on my CX.

do you know lieto? read his blog on usatoday. ridiculous. talk about high maintenance.

Lucho said...

A year already?
Have fun in Kona! Tell Madame Pele I miss her...

Mile training would be a blast! I made All-American in the 1000 and the 4 X 800 relay and was just out of the medals in the 1500. That would be a blast.