Trail Running Terror

This plan is designed to turn you into a lean, mean, trail-running machine. It specifically focuses on the ankle stability, strength, change-of-direction, and fartlek style training necessary for successful trail running. Over 12 weeks, your body will change into a trail-charging animal! The final 2 weeks of this run allow you to actually do a race at the end of the program, up to 20-40K trail running race!

Sample Day 1
Run Lactate Test

Your training "heart rate zones" will be based off your lactate threshold. If you don't do an actual "blood lactate" laboratory test, one way to estimate your lactate threshold is to perform a 30-minute time trial at a high, sustained pace. The goal of this test is to exercise for 30 minutes at the highest effort that can be sustained and monitor your heart rate throughout the test. Your average heart rate during the final 20 minutes should correspond to your LT. ----------------- If 30 minutes is daunting, this test can be modified by simply performing three 5 minute hard, sustainable efforts with 5 minutes rest between each effort. ----------------- Sometimes people exercise too hard for this test. Follow this simple rule - your pace should be the same at the end as at the beginning. If the legs begin to go rubbery, the leg turnover begins to slow, the lungs begin to burn, and you begin to gasp for breath, then you are going to hard! This should be about an 8 on a 1-10 scale, if 10 is the hardest and 1 is the easiest. ----------------- 30-Minute Time Trial for Estimating LT ----------------- You will need a heart rate monitor ----------------- Warm up for 10-15 minutes ----------------- Begin exercise on an indoor trainer, treadmill, or flat outdoor course, and work up to the your maximum *sustainable* intensity within the first 10 minutes ----------------- Record your heart rate each minute for the last 20 minutes ----------------- Calculate your average heart rate over the last 20 minutes ----------------- This average heart rate figure is your estimated heart rate at your lactate threshold ----------------- Now that you have your number, log-in to your TrainingPeaks account, then go to "User Setting". Input your lactate threshold heart rate, then calculate zones (calculation methods will vary minimally, but recommend the Coggan method). Now you have custom training zones! Your bike zones will probably be lower than your run zones, which is why you'll be testing for each sport.

Sample Day 2
Steep hills

Find steep hill (type of hill you would normally "hike" not "run"). Run up the hill in a controlled fashion, focusing on force application and pushing through each stride. Heart rate is not important. This is a focus on strength and power. Run for 45-90 seconds. The recover is the walk back down. If weather does not permit outdoor running, you can instead perform this workout on a steep treadmill or on a stairclimber. Goal is 8-10 repeats.

Sample Day 4
Run OverUnders

How to read this workout: U = under, which is easy, aerobic riding. O = over, which is over threshold, or Zones 4-5. The first three times you do this workout, you should complete 3 sets of 9 minutes of OU (2 minutes U, 1 minute O for a total of 3x will be 9 minutes), with 5 minutes easy running between each set. So you'd do your 9 minute effort, run easy for 5 minutes, then do it again, and once more. For a longer workout, complete 3 sets of 12 OU (2U, 1O), 6 minutes easy running between intervals. An Advanced session should include 3 sets of 15 OU (2U, 1O), 8 minutes easy running between intervals.

Sample Day 5
Run Phase 1

Videos can be viewed at http://www.pacificfit.net/triathlonvideos.html Complete the following exercises as a circuit, 3x through. Rest minimally between exercises, and recover for 1-2 minutes after each circuit. Lateral Hip Hikes - 12-15x One Arm Overhead Lunge - 12-15x per leg Glut Medius Band Walks - 12-15x (can order bands from http://www.performbetter.com/?kbid=2276) Balance Disc/Ball Alternating Overhead Press - 12-15x per side Alternating Cable Rows - 15-20x per side

Sample Day 6
Base Run - 30-50 minutes

This workout can be done outdoors or on a treadmill. The run is flexible, and about 60% of it should be in easy Zone 2. You need to include at least 3-5 hill climbs of 2-4 minutes in duration that take you up into Zone 4. Full recovery after reach. Other than that, just have fun and enjoy the run!

Sample Day 8
Multi-Sport Plyometric Force

Don't superset any of these exercises. Simply perform 6-8 reps, then take a full recovery after each set (45-90 seconds). Do 2-3 sets for each exercise.

Sample Day 9
Steep hills

Find steep hill (type of hill you would normally "hike" not "run"). Run up the hill in a controlled fashion, focusing on force application and pushing through each stride. Heart rate is not important. This is a focus on strength and power. Run for 45-90 seconds. The recover is the walk back down. If weather does not permit outdoor running, you can instead perform this workout on a steep treadmill or on a stairclimber. Goal is 8-10 repeats.

Ben Greenfield
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Ben Greenfield

I coach groups, teams and individuals from around the world for triathlon, cycling, swimming, running, obstacle racing, adventure racing, bodybuilding, muscle gain, fat loss, anti-aging and cognitive performance.

A full list of my consultation, coaching and training services is at http://greenfieldfitnesssystems.com, where you can see my concierge Ultimate coaching , and also 20 and 60 minute consultation and pre-written training and nutrition plans.