Sunday, August 05, 2007

The Hadd 2,400 metre test

I'm still calm. Unlike Susan, I haven't managed to get lost. Another week of Hadd training has passed beneath the Asics/Frees and all is well. 106 kilometres, including a 'long' run of 19.7k, and the famous Hadd 2,400 metre test session. I ran this on Tuesday 31 July down at the homely, freshly re-marked 400m grass track at Calwell...

John Hadd recommends running this test "rested, as if for a race". Now I know why. I was tired in the final two runs, and in the last, really struggled to get the heart-rate up to my target of 152. The test calls for running five 2,400 metre repeats at steady heart-rates, which increase with each run. The rest between each run is 90 seconds.

I decided on heart-rates 8 beats apart, starting with a paint-dryingly slow 120 and finishing with a hot-blooded 152. It wasn't an easy session, and I can't say I'm looking forward to repeating it every six weeks. If Hadd training is working, subsequent tests should show faster paces for each heart-rate. Even the higher HRs, which haven't been used in training. Does this work for average runners? I've already mentioned Robert Song. Then of course, there's Stephen Lacey. On the other side of the Pacific, Eblues has documented a season of Hadd training, which saw him run a 50+ PB for 10k and qualify for the Boston Marathon (3:41:48). I've also received a comment from Grellen, who is doing well on Hadd training.

I ran the 2,400m repeats using lane 6 for five and a half laps, so the actual distance was 2,407 metres! I timed the total run to get the average pace, but did as Hadd recommended, edging the heart-rate up gradually to the target HR. The column of interest to marathoners (not me), is the 87% one. This is the average pace you should be able to run a marathon, if fully trained – which I presume means completing the necessary long runs.

HR (%)120 (72%)128 (77%)136 (82%)144 (87%)152 (91%)
31 July 07


Blogger Superflake said...

And I thought 2k repeats were bad, 2.4k is just plain evil. Looks like the Hadd training is going well. See you at C2S start next week.

9:26 pm  
Blogger Stephen Lacey said...

Nice work Ewen. Those last two repeats certainly do turn it into a hard little session. I'm overdue to do my second test, and although I feel fitter, the warm weather we are having now is likely to muck up the results somewhat.

That phrase "if fully trained" is a little mysterious isn't it. I take it to mean a bit more than just completing necessary long runs. Actually, I take it to mean a state that is pretty difficult to achieve without single-minded determination and a LOT of mileage. I think Hadd's definition of it was the tube of toothpaste analogy, whereby you progressively train each successive heart rate zone to a point you can run all day at (more-or-less). I think it involves a lot more than just getting in the long runs, though of course they are also an important part.

10:34 am  
Blogger Phil said...

I haven't dared wear a HR monitor on a marathon, but I imagine my HR was running higher than 87% on the last 6 miles.

Great set of repeats. I'll need to try something like that.

2:27 pm  
Blogger Eddie said...

This is making my head spin. Way too technical for me.
I going back to just running a lot.

7:31 pm  
Blogger Stu said...

It will be interesting to see the comparisons in a few months!

9:18 pm  
Blogger Lulu said...

What a technical session that is... not to mention hard work. Hope it all pays off for you.

3:10 pm  
Blogger TD said...

I am a bit like Eddie and I have never been one for the technical side of running. I will be talking about this in an upcoming blog post.

But that doesn't mean I can't appreciate different ways of looking at the running world and I commend you for doing this. I almost get the impression you are climbing Mt Everest with this Hadd stuff - pushing the body into rarefied air where it rarely gets an outing.

I will continue to follow developments with much interest.

7:26 pm  
Anonymous IHateToast said...

this is an unacceptable post. can't you round? 2407. c'mon. even i round. 7? are you sure 2407? not 3 meters more or 2 fewer?

9:35 pm  
Blogger Spark Driver said...

Thanks for your great comments on my blog. I reckon the Melbourne Half could be a strong possibility.

9:06 am  
Blogger Tesso said...

I'm starting to think along the same lines as Eddie and TD. Maybe its a Queenslander thing. Then again, maybe I'm just lazy :-)

Looking forward to catching up on Sunday at the C2S. What's your goal?

12:21 pm  
Blogger Scott said...

Thanks for that Ewen I`m sure that others appreciate you explaining the technical aspect of your present training method too.

Keep it up, I hope it helps with your next few outings. Anyways, I`m sure you`ll know when you`ve hadd enough ;)

5:00 pm  
Blogger Bruce said...

Sorry Ewen, its all too technical. I'm sure its paying off theough so keep it up.

Yes I'm still icing occasionally when I feel bit of a twinge down there. I think its slow getting better but it is taking a hell of long time. Cant wait to be running again.

7:26 pm  
Blogger strewth said...

Blimey Ewen - my tiny brain is boggling! Long slow running sounds the best part of your training to me - love those long slow runs!

10:08 pm  
Anonymous Steve said...

Great stuff Ewen, I love the techie stuff. If you ran 2407 m, in my book that's 2407 m and not 2400 m. Multiply that by 5 and that's 35 m in the bank. The only thing missing is a graph.

All in all though, sounds like a tough session.

12:14 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Too bloody technical Ewen. You should adopt MLM JW's training program. He beats you in every race remember.

4:36 pm  
Blogger Luckylegs said...

Well, as one pedant to another, I like all that technical stuff!

I can't resist a challenge either, so one day soon I will try that 2400m test...can but try!

8:04 pm  
Blogger Hamburglar said...


I have been checking in on your blog from time to time and am enjoying the Hadd journey you are on.

Reading with interest...

2:35 pm  

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