This 12-week training plan requires the use of a heart rate monitor and is designed for the experienced runner who has a solid base of running and is looking to develop better strength endurance during the off season or non-racing season. This plan works great for those 10k to ultra distance runners looking to continue to build fitness and remain "sharp" during non-racing times of year. Following this plan will improve lactate threshold, build strength endurance and foundational leg strength. The workouts included in most weeks allow you to customize the plan to your capacity for weekly volume. with long weekend runs topping out at 2 hours. Workout descriptions are very specific, with a focus on "quality" runs. R&R weeks every fourth week when training is greatly reduced for 4-5 days. These R&R weeks will allow for adaptation and improved performance.
BT: WU: 20 min. at an easy to moderate effort + 5 X 30 sec. building speed. TEST: The test is best done on flat terrain or track. TEST - After your WU, run ONE mile as fast as you can. Focus on being steady and not going out too hard. CD: 5-10 minutes nice and easy.
Data RECORD: Capture your average heart rate for the one mile test and follow the directions below to create your HR training zones.
WU: 20 min. in zone 1-3 + 5 X 30 sec. building speed. MS: 6 X 30 sec. hill repeats with 90 sec. RI. These should be done at a hard, BUT steady effort. Go by what feels hard for you. These should not be a max effort. Train, don''t strain. This means that the focus should be on consistency. Have a goal to reach the same distance for each repeat. CD: Zone 1-2.
WU: 5-10 min. in zone 1 working on good mid foot strike and quick turnover. MS: Steady in zone 2 with a focus on cadence. Count how many times your right foot hits the ground in 15 second. Look to hit 22-23 per 15 seconds. CD: Zone 1.
Today work on building your foot strength. Foot strength is vital for injury prevention and your run strength. Run EASY barefoot on an all-weather field or manicured grass turf. If this is not possible, I recommend using Nike Free shoes or Vibram FiveFingers for this run, preferably on soft terrain/trail. After the run, stretch your calves.
WU: 25 min. in zone 1-3. MS: 15-20 min. in zone 3 - low zone 4. CD: Zone 1.
WU: 20 min. in zone 1-3 + 5 X 30 sec. building speed. MS1: 3 X 6 min. hill repeats in high zone 4 with 2-3 min. RI. Allow HR to build during the first few min. MS2: Finish run in zone 2-3. CD: Zone 1.
WU: 20 min. in zone 1-3 + 5 X 30 sec. building speed. MS: 6 X 15 sec. steep hill repeats with 2-3 min. RI. These should be done at a strong, progressive effort. Focus on starting out fairly easy and ending hard. Go by what feels hard for you. These should not be a max effort. Train, don''t strain. This means that the focus should be on consistency. Have a goal to be consistent with all of these at the same quality. CD: Zone 1-2.