How to find your pace
We all have busy lives and it’s hard to fit training around work, family and generally just life. There are hiccups along the way, illness, injury, bad runs, new jobs, the list is endless. To top it off there is a lot running jargon that is hard to get your head around. So how do you make sense of it all.
I try to break things down as much as I can, to ensure that running isn’t stressful for you and that it is a stress release, remember nothing is set in stone, all training plans are adjustable and you have to trust me. I am honest and will tell you if I think you have underprepared for an event, so when I say you will be fine, you will be.
There are 3 golden training sessions to any training plan. If you get these sessions into your week you give yourself the best opportunity to enjoy your race, prevents your training from going stale and SLOWS YOU DOWN so you can get faster and not exhaust yourself.
The golden sessions are
1 Race Pace Run
2 Long Run
3 Higher-Intensity Repeats (Interval Training)
1 Race Pace Run
The training pacing session teaches you to physically and mentally run at your target race pace and by practicing your target race pace it enables you to be comfortable so that you pace yourself as evenly and as efficiently as possible.
If you think you don’t have a race pace, then just think what you would like to achieve for your next run. Work out what the “race” pace would be and run one of your shorter runs in the week at this pace. If it’s too much then the pace is too fast, if it feels too comfortable then it’s too slow. Trust your body, listen to your body and your breathing, don’t watch your watch all the time, start tuning into to you.
2 Long Run
The long run is all about building endurance for your race, if you want to successfully race long, you need to properly train long. The benefits of the long run are numerous
It builds the foundations from which you can add the extra beneficial sessions which reduces the chance of injury. I like my athletes to have a good base foundation of miles so they have built up slow twitch muscles.
Builds the aerobic system
Prepares the body for the physical stress of running long
Provided an opportunity to practice fueling and hydrating properly
Prepares the athlete for the mental stress of running long
Long runs should be completed at a pace of about 45-90 secs per mile slower than your target race pace. Do not run these long runs too fast, the old fashioned school of thought which is “being more is always better” is not the case for long races. If you don’t slow these long runs down you will be exhausted half way through the week and feel rubbish, top athletes DO NOT run all their runs at the same pace so why should we?
3 Higher Intensity Repeats or Interval Training
Hills and Speed training is what these High Intensity Repeats are, they don’t have to be run at break neck speed, just 30 secs or more than your race pace, that’s all.