Update on my trail race training

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Thought I’d fill you in on my training progress for the National 10k Trail Championships. I’ve got just over a month left to train and I’ve just finished my conditioning phase which meant lots of slow aerobic distance running (mostly 1-hour runs at a comfortable pace … 120-125 heart rate).

I decided to test myself with a set of six ½-mile intervals on the track to see how well my breathing would hold up. All of that aerobic training is paying off, because I was able to run the entire set without getting winded.

Here are my splits for the set in the order I ran them. My main goal with the workout was to progressively run each interval faster without increasing my perceived rate of exertion (which I wanted to keep at a constant 6-7 on a scale of 1-10). This is the perceived rate of exertion I plan to use on race day.

Six ½-mile intervals
Resting heart rate: 41
Max heart rate during exercise: 155
Resting heart rate during 200m jog breaks: 114

1. 4:09
2. 3:45
3. 3:35
4. 3:24
5. 3:21
6. 3:10
Average of the six: 3:34

According to “Yasso’s Rule” I should be able to run a 3:34 marathon if I take the average of my 6 intervals and convert the split time from minutes to hours and seconds to minutes. This not only tells me that I’m ready to run a marathon at a Boston qualifying pace, but that I’m now ready to safely add speed work into my workouts without overtaxing my lungs or starving my legs of oxygen.

My current training plan from now until race day:
I plan to change my daily running workouts to include sets of 10 x 3-minute hill intervals twice weekly for the next two weeks. I’ll then increase the length of the intervals to 4 or 5 minutes each and do six of these intervals twice weekly. One run per week will be a 6 mile run at race pace and one run per week will be a Long Slow Distance run of 10-12 miles. ALL of my weekly runs will be on trails up to race day and I plan to do a 4-day taper before the race.

Within all of these various workouts I will always be working to perfect both my uphill and my downhill running technique so that on race day I can run efficiently and fast. Let’s hope my plan works.



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