General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Can your run be maintained with total stress, or do you need intensity? Rss Feed  
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2014-03-31 4:38 PM

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Subject: Can your run be maintained with total stress, or do you need intensity?

Hey BT - question on run training.

I'm entering something of a bike focus - both because my bike currently sux azz and secondary to a slightly strained hammy.  Turns out that I can run - even longer distances (for me, that's 10-14 miles) - without aggravating the leg if I stay at low Z3 or less and keep a high cadence.

My run right now is as good as it's ever been.  I'm doing around 35 miles a week, with a Z3-Z4 interval or hill rep, a tempo, a long and a HM pace run (with another recovery/fun run or two thrown in depending on the week).  That's what has worked for me run-training-wise over the years.

I'm wondering if keeping the run mileage close - say around 30 mpw, while upping the bike a bunch but cutting out any run intensity above the very bottom of Z3 for 5-6 weeks will lead to a big loss or a little loss on the run, and I have no experience with how this approach might work.

It feels like without the intensity, the added bike will be manageable and the leg will be able to heal (I hope - or I'll change all this up).  I'm just wondering if anyone has experience with going from intensity to steady volume and keeping about (not exactly - has to decrease some) the same level of run fitness.

Thoughts?  Am I thinking about this correctly, or am I way off?

Thanks!!

Matt



2014-03-31 4:50 PM
in reply to: mcmanusclan5

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Subject: RE: Can your run be maintained with total stress, or do you need intensity?
reduce intensity over 5-6 weeks but keep the running volume. You will lose very little. You will lose some but it seems like a simple choice and situation. You have a nagging injury, you need to take care of it..and the ''downside'' of getting healthy is a very little lost of top end fitness.

don't think twice about it and get healthy now.

my advice...be careful in ramping up the biking.... strain hamstring can be aggravated when riding if you aren't careful.
2014-04-01 5:36 AM
in reply to: mcmanusclan5

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Subject: RE: Can your run be maintained with total stress, or do you need intensity?
You'll be fine, and should consider scaling back the running further. Avoiding long-term injury should be priority #1. You won't lose a lot of run fitness.

A couple of notes on the run regime, not that you asked for input on that. Based on your description, I can see how there are risks of injury. If you're doing 35 miles a week, then a long run of 14 miles would make up 40% of the total. That's on the high side. It looks like most of the rest of your running is on the faster side (interval/hills + tempo + HM-pace run), with little other steady mileage. That'll put a strain on the body.

If you'll be biking more now, then you could switch to putting that intensity on the bike, leaving you to run much more conservatively when you do get out there.
2014-04-01 9:02 AM
in reply to: colinphillips

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Subject: RE: Can your run be maintained with total stress, or do you need intensity?

Thanks both - the advice is much appreciated.  Jonnyo - agreed that it's faster to be healthy on race day than to get injured looking for those last few seconds over a many hour course and not toe the line at all!

Colin, happy for the input - especially from someone who probably ran more miles than I rode last month!  Agree with the intensity/long run equation.  Those particular numbers would be a max week with something more like 40 miles (for the long run of 14).  Most of my long runs on a 35 week are in the 10-12 range.  Still a hefty percentage, but a bit more manageable - especially as I will do one or two easy runs in between (and sometimes even instead of the HM pace or the tempo run depending on how I feel).  So, yeah - I take your point and you're absolutely right.

What I have to watch for is sneaking the intensity up on my "easy runs," and probably make most of my runs easy-ish for the next month (hamstring dependent - could be no runs… we'll see on that).  I like the idea of putting the intensity into the bike - and will also watch for how I fell during the ramp (to Jonnyo's point on bikes and hamstrings).  Too bad that I just like to run a leeeeetle faster than whatever speed I'm targeting!  That's a recipe for disaster - just have to be disciplined about it.

Thanks again!

Matt

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