Switch It Up
Wednesday, 3 October 2012
From the October 2012 issue of Runner’s World
Run better with these smart tweaks
By Sam Murphy
IDEA: BEAT MY PB
SMART TWEAK: Try a new race distance
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with chasing PBs – and having a goal to work towards is great for your motivation – but if you’re trying to shave stubborn seconds and getting nowhere, it may be time to set your sights on a different distance. This always provides an exciting new challenge. You’ll need to make amendments to your training to prepare more specifically for a different event, which helps to keep you motivated and avoids the monotony of following the same routine over and over again.
IDEA: PUSH EVERY SESSION HARDER
SMART TWEAK: Time your hard workouts
If you’re thinking about doing a tough speedwork session, research carried out at the University of North Texas, US, found the afternoon is your prime time for performance. This is because your body’s aerobic capacity will have increased by up to four per cent, meaning you can either run longer or harder. Your body temperature is also at its highest at this time, meaning your muscles are warm and flexible; plus your muscle strength is at its greatest – all ideal conditions for a post-lunch training session.
IDEA: MIX UP MY TRAINING PACES
SMART TWEAK: Make your training paces goal-specific
It’s a good idea to add intervals, tempo runs and the like to your schedule. If your training stays at one pace, you’re not challenging the heart and lungs, so you won’t trigger improvement,” explains Donald. But don’t vary randomly – every session, be it speed reps or a steady run, should be done at the specific pace required to meet your desired race-pace goal. “With reps/intervals, many people go too fast, believing the faster the better, or too slow, because they don’t like the discomfort,” says Donald. Take the time to map out your training paces and you’ll get the best out of every session.
If your 10K race goal is 45 minutes...
Race pace = 4:31 min/km
Tempo pace = 4:35–4:47 min/km
Kilometre rep pace = 4:20–4:29 min/km
800m rep pace = 3:18–3:28 min per rep
Easy runs/long runs = 5:21–5:59 min/km
Like this article? Subscribe to Runner’s World and save up to A$35 on the retail price (delivered directly to your door) and receive a FREE pair of Brooks socks PLUS if you subscribe for two years you will also receive a FREE Runner’s World watch.
If you missed picking this issue up at newsstands you can purchase your Runner's World back issue here today!