Tuesday, November 21, 2006

She Loves Me

I can cry all I want. But she teases me into thinking she loves me. What can I do? I am smitten.

Today I awoke feeling fine. Where'd all the fatigue go? How about those sore muscles? Nothing.

Scheduled workout: 10 miles w/embedded 20 minute Fast Progression Run. w/u at recovery pace, 20 minutes @ paces from 6:12 to 5:51 [20 minutes @ 102% - 108% MP], c/d at recovery pace. Purpose: Aerobic Power.

3.59 mile warmup @ 9:10 pace. HR 133.
3.3 miles @ 6:06 pace. Mile splits: 6:04, 5:54, 6:23. HR 172.
3.35 mile coodown @ 9:26 pace. HR 137.

The warmup was apprehensive since I always feel a little nervous about how I'm going to do. Like I'm a third party, watching the workout instead of actively participating. Like someone else is controlling the legs. But again, once I was off on the fast portion of the run I slid right into a groove of relaxed running.

Today I tried to get a little better handle on pace management. I did a little better than last week since I didn't feel so stressed out there. I was very relaxed and felt in control. Mile one went by in 6:04 when I meant to do a 6:12. Mile two scooted by in 5:54 when I meant to do 6:00. But it was just as well since the wind was at my back for these two miles and now I was to turn into it.

I paid the weather price and the pace price on mile three as my motivation to dig into the cold wind just flittered away. I lengthened the stride a little, swung the arms a little more forcefully, and tried other tricks, but the truth was I was slowing and I didn't really care. I had enjoyed miles 1 and 2 so much that I didn't want mile three to be a super human effort. The split shows this as I crossed in 6:23 as I came back out of the wind. I finished out the 20 minutes about 1 tenth of a mile shorter than last Thursday - but that is ok (the pace was back down to sub 6). I felt very good, relaxed, and in control. And to be above MP, running smoothly, and on the full mileage schedule just makes me feel good.

I happily jogged out my remaining mileage to make 10.24 miles. Felt absolutely great. Today literally felt like an easy day. I suspect that just 20 minutes of work, while difficult when being completed, is just so darn easy compared to some workouts that last for hours. It's the genius behind Lydiard.

And for those conspiracy theorists among us - I suggest quietly that the joke's on us. We worry, plan, and complete these great high end aerobic workouts and then fall back safely into our snug 15 milers every other day at recovery pace to 'sleep it off'. When all the while, it's the Monday 15, the Wednesday 15, the Friday 18, and the Sunday 21 miler that puts the T in Turbo. But that's just between us.

Tomorrow I do an easy 15.


Blogger Hunter said...

Andrew, does working on "aerobic power" mean improving the aerobic threshold? Many jargons used by Renato confuse me. Could you please explain the difference between aerobic endurance and aerobic resistance? Thanks.

11/22/2006 6:27 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

Hi Hunter,

I agree, Renato is confusing - just like all the other coaches. But as far as I can tell, yes, aerobic power is to work the fibers in the zone right at the current aerobic threshold (slightly faster than MP) with the view of increasing the body's ability to run for longer and longer periods at faster paces.

Aerobic resistance on the other hand is volume at MP or paces slightly below. The purpose of aerobic resistance is to build a substantial amount of miles running at the effort level required during a marathon. This adapts the body to burn fuel very efficiently at this pace. By efficient I mean the right amount of fat mixed with the glycogen. Running at MP will create this adaptation.

The problem lies in determining 'MP' or marathon pace. If we take our current MP we are safe - however we may be short changing ourselves a little because if our MP doesn't match what our 'predictors' indicate there could be other reasons why our MP is low. Reasons for this could be the very thing we are trying cure: poor fuel efficiency at faster paces. Therefore take a good look at what MP 'should be' when determining where your aerobic threshold actually is (~90% maxHR).

Warning however: don't run too fast and don't run without recovery. Going anaerobic in marathon training is counterproductive (except during the final weeks just before the race) and running without recovery slows the whole apparatus to a standstill after 14 days. Plus recovery running is where your big volume comes from. Miles and miles of easy running on the days in between the MP workouts (aerobic resistance) or the tempo workouts (aerobic power). Without that volume you'll sharpen what you have to a nice shiny edge all the while neglecting the opportunity to build a deeper base, a larger, stronger foundation from which to climb to new heights. You can't do that without those high volume weeks and months.

Good luck and go to it.

11/22/2006 7:08 PM  

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