Route: Brodie Park Run
Time Run: 45mins 08secs (average pace – 8.12)
With Sunday’s long run in mind I set off and ran nice and easy round Brodie Park. The ground was nice and firm after the milder weather we’ve been having.
I mentioned the other day that there were some key lessons I learnt from Graeme Jones at Hampden so they are … in no particular order ….
# Weekly milage
Graeme reckons that my internal system (aerobic – heart & lungs) could probably cope with 80-90 miles a week but he felt that my skeletal system (bones and joints etc) would struggle. So he felt my weekly average of around 45-50 over the year is about right. Obviously I have some higher weeks but I also have some lower recovery weeks so the average is about right.
# Downhill running
We talked about the strain that downhill running puts on your quads particularly in a long ultra like the whw race. I explained how sore my quads were the first year and how much better they were last year after I’d done more downhill running in my training. Graeme gave a great tip for running downhill – lean forward and relax (which I’ve been doing) and let your arms whirl like a windmill (which I hadn’t done). I’ve tried it since and while I might look like a bit of an idiot it does work!!
# Training Plan
Graeme spent time looking over my 2009 training plan. He felt it was well put together and a sensible plan for the year. However he did have some comments to make to imporve it!
# Importance of recovery
The main area where he suggested I change things is in my recovery. Particularly after a long run like this Sunday he recommended some cross training – get in the pool for 45mins and encourage the oxygen flowing round my body. He also questioned one or two of weekly planned milages after some of the ultras. Allow your body to recovery was the main thrust. Some cycling, some walking and some swimming. Interestinglyu he added in some walking sessions for those weeks as a better option than doing nothing.
# Injury prone weeks
Graeme highlighted the three weeks following the whw race and siad this is where I will be most prone to injury. He encouraged me to make sure I don’t overdo anything and only build up as my body feels ready. I have 7 weeks between the whw race and the Devil’s so I need to be careful that I don’t start running too far too soon.
Graeme stressed the importance of the regeneration of the muscles. I must admit I didn’t take all this in but he recommended a book which I’ve ordered so I’ll come back to that one!
We talked a bit about tapering and Graeme said that there is no real research on the best way to taper but that every coach and athlete recommends it and speaks of the importance. The key thing seems to be to find out what works best for each individual. So I’m going to give that a bit more thought for this year.
# Off road running
We both agreed that doing all your long runs (3hrs plus) of road is far better for your joints and muscles.
# Strenghening exercises
Again the above book has lots of ideas on this. I am very poor at doing any sort of stretches so maybe its time I took this aspect of my training a bit more seriously. The problem is I like to run and I feel everythin else is wasting goo running time!!
# Lactic Acid
Graeme gave me a great illustration of lactic acid (which build up in the muscles when you break down your glygogen stores). He said imagine it’s like wax. If you leave wax it hardens and that is what lactiv acid does in your muscles if you just stop. As wax needs heat to keep it moving so your muscles needs oxygen to flush out the lactic acid in your muscles. So when you r legs are sore after a long hard run swim or cycle to get the oxygen flowing round your body and flushing out the lactic acid.
# Zones for training
Graeme spoke about using the training zones for my training. He did suggest getting a heart rate monitor but in an email he agreed that for someone like myslef who has been running for a good number of years we do know our body and can work out what it recovery pace, what is tempo pace and what is interval training pace. Plus I find having the garmin with a constant mins per mile pace on really helps. I really like the fact that I have such clear zones that I can work towards.
So thanks again Graeme for all your advice. It was very appreciated.