What exactly is this about training at various different paces? What does it mean? Is it really beneficial for me?
Before going further one very, very important fact to note. If you do not train at the right pace you are accomplishing nothing. Irrespective of which school of training you follow, You HAVE to train at the right paces based on a current race performance and or test. Anything that you do that does not fit into your current fitness profile is junk. By training at the wrong paces you are doing nothing more than further stressing a body that is already under pressure. Train smart and train don’t strain.
Recap, last time we established that as a road runner the following was relevant to your training.
Bear the following in mind: A. you need a current race time to calculate training paces. B. For Heart Rate Maximum purposes You need to do an HR max test to establish HR max. Both of these will be covered in a separate article.
1. Easy run pace.
2. Marathon Pace.
3. Lactate Threshold pace ( A little slower than 10km race pace, although using 10k pace will suffice).
4. Vo2 Max Pace. (a little slower than 5km race pace, although 5k pace will suffice)
5. Repetition pace training.
We then Looked at Easy Run Pace in Part 1 and Marathon and Lactate Threshold Pace in Part 2.
This time we are going to look at 4 and 5. V02 Max Pace and Repetition Pace.
VO2 Max Pace. Interval Training. Aerobic Capacity Training.
This word, Interval has a myriad of meanings and can lead to confusion and debate among coach’s never mind the recreational runner. So for the purposes of this series of articles we will restrict our discussion to the confines of what your road runner would require to supplement their performance.
Once again there are a variety of session one can do in Interval or VO2Max training.
These session can be anything between 30 seconds to 5 minutes per workbout.
the rest period then be equal to or a little less than the preceding workbout. Often the rest period for this type of session will consist of light jogging. An example of this would be a session consisting of 600’s at Aerobic Capacity Pace. (AC). run the 600m at the correct pace and then jog 200m very slowly , 2m00 to 2m30.
another session would be to run 10 x 400m at AC Pace, 2min00 static rest. You can basically put together any number of distances as long as you do not run longer than 5min per repeat. Fartlek is another fantastic way of including this form of training into your training regimen. From a freestyle 1hr30 min session to a strictly formulated session such as 5 x 4min at AC pace with 3min jog rest for example.
Aerobic Capacity Pace is the following.
Derived from or based on a recent race performance.
It can be based on your HR max. This is not crucial, race performance is.
Perceived exertion. Pretty intense, You should not be able to continue at this pace for much more than 5km. It is hard.
95% to 98% of HR Max.
96% to 100% of VO2Max. (Can be calculated with recent 5km time).
Rest is equal to the amount of time run or a little less.
Stick to the correct pace.
You can run easy during recoveries.
you have to base your maximum amount done to your current weekly mileage. between 6% to 8% of your weekly mileage. not more.
Repetition Pace training.
Essentially these are run fast at relatively short distance or period of time with a long rest. These can be repeats of anything from 100m to around 600m max for the road runner. For the road runner more often than not you will stick to 200m, 300m, 400m repeats. These repeats can be included in a fartlek session. Hill repeats are also a form of R pace, in fact it is often said that hills are a speed session in disguise.
So why must a road runner run these types of sessions? Because they help develop and improve your mechanics, anaerobic metabolism, and efficiency. In short, the more refined your mechanics are and the more efficient your running style the better you will run a marathon or longer road race. Better efficiency means better energy marathon in the longer races which results in more reserves to get to the end.
Repetition Pace Training is the following.
Short fast runs.
HR Max is not relevant you should be seeing HR max.
100% + of VO2Max.
Run fast and in control. Run the right pace as dictated by a current race performance.
No more than 4% to 6% of your weekly mileage.
That brings us to the end of the series on the various training paces a runner should use in their programme to work towards a goal race or a goal time.
It is however very important to note that one has to achieve balance. There has to be balance and consistency in your programme. There must be quality days and easy days.
One step at a time one day at a time. Regular consistent weekly mileage with quality days run at the correct pace. Running too fast is only going to lead to you getting injured or getting burned out.