Trail Running Event Training (8 weeks)

Average Weekly Training Hours 05:41
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours 05:41
Training Load By Week

This plan helps runners with a well-established aerobic base build intensity and taper for their target event. It builds upon the previous plan in this series, the 20-week Base Training plan. Use this plan to build upon your aerobic base over the final 6 to 8 weeks before your A-priority race, sharpening your fitness with anaerobic VO2max and muscular endurance training.

The two plans that lead up to this plan are:
- Trail Running Pre-Base Prep (8 weeks)
- Trail Running Base Training (20 weeks) + Event Taper (4 weeks)

Consult the Alp Fitness website (alpfitness.com) for supplemental videos, tools and resources to use along with this plan. Train smart!

Sample Day 2
0:55:00
52.7TSS
Run VO2 3/2 x 4

VO2max intervals to develop your your aerobic capacity.

If you begin this workout and don't feel recovered enough to do it, switch to the default option of either an endurance run at your AeT or an easy recovery run well below your AeT (in Zone 1). If you choose a recovery run, shorten the duration of the workout as needed (e.g., 20-30 minutes).

Focus on keeping cadence between 168-190 steps per minute. If you count single steps, that's 28-30 left foot strikes per 20 seconds or 80-90 per minute.

When finished, hold each of these stretches for 30 seconds each:
1. Wall Bent Knee Calf Stretch
2. Wall Straight Leg Calf Stretch
3. Standing Quadriceps Stretch
4. Standing Forward Bend
5. Standing Hip Flexor Stretch
6. Groin Stretch
7. Squat
For instructions, see https://www.alpfitness.com/six-essential-post-run-stretches/

In your post-workout comments, indicate how you felt with a letter grade:

A. Felt amazing; superhuman
B. Felt fairly good; decent workout
C. Felt a bit flat or off (e.g., heavy legs)
D. Had to stop early; didn't have it today
F. Could not train due to illness or fatigue

Write down any factors that may account for your rating above (e.g., took a nap yesterday, motivated by nice weather, had poor night's sleep, working longer hours this week).

Sample Day 2
0:20:00
Max Strength Maintenance

Do 2-3 sets of 1-4 reps with 3-5 min between sets. Weight should be about 85-90% of one rep max. Do not go to failure, but keep it challenging.

Rotate through the exercises as a circuit. This will allow for the required recovery between sets of a particular exercise while providing for a more efficient and beneficial workout.

Always maintain perfect form with attention to safety. If in doubt on how to do an exercise, consult a trainer in the gym or choose an alternate exercise.

1. Cable twist up-down
2. Dumbbell bench press
3. Dumbbell single leg split squat
4. Pull-ups
5. Power clean

When finished, spend some time stretching. Hold each stretch for 3 minutes.

STRETCHES
a. Seated hamstring stretch
b. Groin stretch
c. Standing Quadriceps Stretch
d. Calf stretch

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NON-GYM OPTIONS
================
If you don’t have access to a gym, you can do alternative exercises with equipment at home like stretch cords, a TRX, and a stability ball. These options are provided below.

GROUP 1
a. Front/side planks (do sets of 30 seconds)
b. Good morning (use body weight)
c. Single Leg Split Squat (use body weight or water jugs using a bench or stairs)

GROUP 2
a. TRX high row
b. TRX chest press or push-ups*
c. TRX low row
*Push-ups can be done with feet on a stability ball for more resistance

GROUP 3
a. Body squats
b. Hitchiker (prone position with thumbs up)
c. Lateral raises (stand on stretch cord)

For descriptions and demos of alternative non-gym exercises, see https://www.alpfitness.com/category/functional-strength-videos/.

====================
LINKS TO GYM DEMOS
====================

1. https://exrx.net/WeightExercises/Obliques/CBUpDownTwist
2. https://exrx.net/WeightExercises/PectoralSternal/DBBenchPress
3. https://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/Quadriceps/DBSingleLegSplitSquat
4. Pull-ups
5. https://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/OlympicLifts/PowerClean

STRETCHES
a. https://exrx.net/Stretches/Hamstrings/Seated
b. https://www.exrx.net/Stretches/HipAdductors/LyingGroin
c. https://www.exrx.net/Stretches/Quadriceps/Standing
d. https://exrx.net/Stretches/Gastrocnemius/Wall

Sample Day 2
0:20:00
Runner's Core Routine

Perform 1-3 sets of 8-12 reps (or 30 second intervals) as a circuit—that is, rotating from one exercise to the next. Always perform exercises with perfect form. Add/subtract reps or time as needed to keep it challenging.

Add additional core exercises or make changes to this routine based on your needs and preferences.

For descriptions and demos of exercises, see https://www.alpfitness.com/category/functional-strength-videos/.

1. Superman
2. Front plank
3. Glute bridge
4. Side plank
5. Donkey kicks
6. Lying hip abductions

==================
ADVANCED ROUTINE
==================

1. Superman
2. Front plank with straight leg hip extension
3. Glute bridge
4. Side plank with hip abduction
5. Donkey kicks

Sample Day 3
1:00:00
55TSS
Run NB Endurance

Endurance run at or below your AeT (aerobic threshold) to develop your aerobic system and add to your training base. Your AeT is a conversational pace that you can sustain while breathing through your nose. Run at or below this pace for the run.

Note your AeT HR from your last AeT Test workout. This may or may not correspond to Zone 2 depending upon your fitness level. If you are unsure of your AeT HR, stay in Zone 2 to err on the conservative side.

Focus on keeping cadence between 168-190 steps per minute. If you count single steps, that's 28-30 left foot strikes per 20 seconds or 80-90 per minute.

When finished, hold each of these stretches for 30 seconds each:
1. Wall Bent Knee Calf Stretch
2. Wall Straight Leg Calf Stretch
3. Standing Quadriceps Stretch
4. Standing Forward Bend
5. Standing Hip Flexor Stretch
6. Groin Stretch
7. Squat
For instructions, see https://www.alpfitness.com/six-essential-post-run-stretches/

In your post-workout comments, indicate how you felt with a letter grade:

A. Felt amazing; superhuman
B. Felt fairly good; decent workout
C. Felt a bit flat or off (e.g., heavy legs)
D. Had to stop early; didn't have it today
F. Could not train due to illness or fatigue

Write down any factors that may account for your rating above (e.g., took a nap yesterday, motivated by nice weather, had poor night's sleep, working longer hours this week).

Sample Day 4
1:00:00
61.3TSS
Run Cruise Intervals 8/2 x 4

Cruise intervals around your lactate threshold (LT) to develop your muscular endurance and increase your lactate threshold.

If you begin this workout and don't feel recovered enough to do it, switch to the default option of either an endurance run at your AeT or an easy recovery run well below your AeT (in Zone 1). If you choose a recovery run, shorten the duration of the workout as needed (e.g., 20-30 minutes).

Focus on keeping cadence between 168-190 steps per minute. If you count single steps, that's 28-30 left foot strikes per 20 seconds or 80-90 per minute.

When finished, hold each of these stretches for 30 seconds each:
1. Wall Bent Knee Calf Stretch
2. Wall Straight Leg Calf Stretch
3. Standing Quadriceps Stretch
4. Standing Forward Bend
5. Standing Hip Flexor Stretch
6. Groin Stretch
7. Squat
For instructions, see https://www.alpfitness.com/six-essential-post-run-stretches/

In your post-workout comments, indicate how you felt with a letter grade:

A. Felt amazing; superhuman
B. Felt fairly good; decent workout
C. Felt a bit flat or off (e.g., heavy legs)
D. Had to stop early; didn't have it today
F. Could not train due to illness or fatigue

Write down any factors that may account for your rating above (e.g., took a nap yesterday, motivated by nice weather, had poor night's sleep, working longer hours this week).

Sample Day 5
0:30:00
Muscular Endurance

This workout will develop your muscular endurance.

Two exercises:
1. Box Step-ups
2. Leg Curl (on stability ball)

You will need a 12-inch box or stair and a weighted pack for the box step-ups. You will need a stability ball for the leg curls.

After a warmup, do 2-3 x 8 minutes of box step-ups with 2 minutes of leg curls on a stability ball in between.

For the box step-ups and leg curls, you should maintain a pace at your AeT (breathing through the nose) but should feel a burn in your legs due to the added weight. Experiment with the amount of weight that works for you to achieve this effect.

Cool down and stretch when finished.

Box step-ups demo: https://exrx.net/WeightExercises/GluteusMaximus/BWStepUp

Leg curls demo: https://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/Hamstrings/BWBallLegCurl

Sample Day 5
0:20:00
Runner's Core Routine

Perform 1-3 sets of 8-12 reps (or 30 second intervals) as a circuit—that is, rotating from one exercise to the next. Always perform exercises with perfect form. Add/subtract reps or time as needed to keep it challenging.

Add additional core exercises or make changes to this routine based on your needs and preferences.

For descriptions and demos of exercises, see https://www.alpfitness.com/category/functional-strength-videos/.

1. Superman
2. Front plank
3. Glute bridge
4. Side plank
5. Donkey kicks
6. Lying hip abductions

==================
ADVANCED ROUTINE
==================

1. Superman
2. Front plank with straight leg hip extension
3. Glute bridge
4. Side plank with hip abduction
5. Donkey kicks

Adam Hodges
|
Alp Fitness

Originally from Colorado, I’m now based in the San Francisco Bay Area. I offer training plans for triathletes, runners, and swimmers seeking personal growth through self-defined challenges, whether those involve races (e.g. Ironman 70.3, 50K trail runs) or solo adventures (e.g. fast-packing, mountaineering objectives). Learn more about the training approach in my book, “The Triathlete’s Training Guide,” and check out alpfitness.com for additional videos and articles to help you train smart.