Monday, May 10, 2010

Back to Basics – Part 2

Well, after Saturday’s 12 mile jaunt around the Back Bay, it’s apparent that fitness packed it’s bags and left during the last few weeks. No biggie. It’s not that I didn’t expect it to leave. Too bad there’s not a “fitness” vault where we can make a deposit when we have a little too much fitness (if that’s even possible), and then make a withdrawal later on. Oh well.

After discussing it with Coach Sumner, the plan to proceed is pretty simple – slow down and keep moving. Building fitness involves proper training. Proper training involves slowing down and not running every training run like its a race. For me that means training at these paces:

  • 5K pace (short intervals, VO2Max workouts): 7:45 to 8:30
  • 10K pace (longer intervals, tempo run): 8:30 to 9:20
  • Easy pace (general aerobic runs): 9:20 to 9:55
  • Marathon pace (pace runs): 9:55 to 10:44
  • Long run pace (long runs): 10:44 to 12:00

(These come directly from the McMillan Running Calculator, with my last Half Marathon time plugged in.)

There is one issue – when I trail run (like I did Sunday – 4 miles in Deer Canyon/El Moro), I can’t easily hold to a pace range. I’m just too wimpish and don’t really relish the scrapes and bruises that come with rushing on a trail. Ooof!

For trail running, I’ll fall back on heart rate ranges – if I’m substituting for a long run, I’ll keep my heart rate below 75% of max, and if I’m substituting for an easy run, I’ll keep my heart rate around 75% to 80% of max.

For now though, it’s back to the basics. Slow and easy miles. And more miles. And more miles.


  1. Too bad there’s not a “fitness” vault where we can make a deposit when we have a little too much fitness (if that’s even possible), and then make a withdrawal later on. I love it the idea, Glenn! That would be awesome.

    Good luck with your training!

  2. I'm right there with you. Ran 13.5 miles at Back Bay on Saturday and felt pretty out of it. Shessh, that "fitness" vault sounds like such a good idea right about now. Although, I, for one, never feel like I work hard enough to have so much fitness that I can put some away. I guess fitness is like money and being thin, you can never have too much of those either. ;) It's getting hot running outside these days even during the early hours. Remember to hydrate.

  3. That is good info, Glenn. I am going to keep better track of my own pace and progress and visit that calculator.

    I am still eager for you to post the details of your strength training on your blog. I know you are doing it...just curious to know the details and how it is going. My strength training over the past couple months especially has definitely affected my running in a positive way. And..on that note...I hitting the street in a few minutes for a midday run. Have a great day!

    The house I was born in overlooked the back bay, btw...memories. It was on West Wind Way. Memories.... I guess, as a toddler, I used to throw all sorts of valuable items off the deck and into the iceplant that covered the hillside..... Oops.

  4. I think you're doing a great job. I love McMillan's Calculator. Really helped me realize how much I need to slooooow down on my long run days. I love it.

    I keep meaning to buy the heart rate monitor for my Garmin. Doh!

    Keep it up!

  5. A fitness Vault?! Glen!!! You are genius! Let's get on it!

  6. Trail runs are a whole other thing and they probably should have a McMillan's grid for those! I like your long term training plan and I will probably do something similar once I'm back to real running again. You're doing great. :)

  7. Hi Glenn,
    Wow, you just did a twelve miler on Saturday! Good for you...I have been feeling a little lazy lately. I really havn't done much since my last half marathon. I need to get back in action again:) I should start using the McMillans calculator might help me to focus on the facts. Have a good one Glenn:)

  8. Basics are good and they keep your fitness up! Keep at it, you have a GREAT plan!

  9. man, I need to git back to running.

    that is all.

  10. Someone's already said it, but the McMillen charts are NOT based on trail running. It's very difficult to maintain even pacing on trails, and dangerous too - as you seem to understand.

  11. Sounds like a good plan! I think trail running is a while different game and so you cant go by those paces! Good idea to go by heart rate!

  12. Yeah, why is it so easy to lose fitness?!? It's not fair. Haha. Good luck hitting the paces/HR ranges. I find that hard to do sometimes.

  13. Isn't that the truth. I totally hear where you are comming from.

    More miles
    Longer runs
    More Miles