Sunday, April 20, 2008

Hadd for Ancients

As I drove the Toasts to the airport after the Canberra Marathon, Mark asked "How's the 11:07 for 3k plan going?". "It's not going to be easy", was all I could blurt out, while navigating our circuitous roads and avoiding the worst of Canberra's suicidal P-plate drivers.

There's purportedly nothing new in distance running training. I'll call my plan Hadd for Ancients, which I hope is something which will work for me. In a recent post, I wrote about being shocked at losing my sprint speed whilst doing Hadd-training. For those that don't know, Hadd is similar to the base phase of Lydiard training, but using heart-rates to guide the effort on any particular run.

Why Hadd for Ancients? Because as we become ancient (for argument, over 40, although I know teenagers who regard 25 as ancient), we lose sprinting speed. However, if we regularly practise sprinting, we can limit this loss. For the next six to eight weeks I'll run aerobic Lydiard-style base training; similar to what I did in the second half of last year, but with a few modifications. Once per week, after one of my steady runs, I'll do some barefoot 100 to 150 metre sprints on the grass track at Calwell — not flat out, but running relaxed and fast, with full recoveries between sprints. I'm also going to do a short race (about 3k), every two weeks. The other significant modification is to run more of my aerobic runs at Hadd's "upper aerobic" heart-rates — 80 to 85% of maximum (HR 133 to 141 for me), sometimes a little higher, but trying to stay under my lactate threshold. I think these faster runs will be beneficial because the mechanics of running movement at 5 minutes per kilometre pace (8:03 miles), is not dissimilar the mechanics of running at my 5k race goal pace of 4:00 per kilometre (6:26 miles).

After this six to eight weeks, I'll reduce the weekly volume, and start running one or two anaerobic interval sessions per week. More on that later. I hope everyone is having a great weekend — especially those like Jen, who are lucky enough to be running the Boston Marathon. Go Jen!

Toasts and Geese cheer a marathonerUnder the bridge - Toasts and geese cheer on a marathoner in Canberra.

Go CoolRunner! Rob #174 about to pass Tim #190 - 2k to go in the Canberra MarathonGo CoolRunner! Rob #174 (3:15:38) about to overtake Tim #190 (3:15:41) - 2km to go.

Luckylegs runs 5:34:06 in her last marathon at age-78 (Jim White photo)Go Luckylegs! 5:34:06 in her last marathon at Canberra. [Jim White photo]


Anonymous beki said...

Sorry to hear you won't be visiting for the SMH half :-(

2:07 pm  
Blogger Superflake said...

Hadd for Ancients. So at 41 I've been deposited into the Ancient bin. Might have to run faster and teach some of the ankle biters a lesson. No SMH half it can't be true?

3:07 pm  
Blogger Rob said...

If you are ancient Ewen, what does that make me?

I hope Tim doesn't see that photo. In the close-up version, I look like I might be smiling.

5:41 pm  
Blogger Tesso said...

I want a better 3k time too. I think I will follow your progress and steal some of your secrets.

6:13 pm  
Blogger Tesso said...

I want a better 3k time too. I think I will follow your progress and steal some of your secrets.

6:13 pm  
Blogger Tesso said...

Whoops, meant to add thanks so much for your support last Sunday. You seemed to be everywhere.

6:14 pm  
Blogger iliketoast said...

The photo really shows how well balanced Rob is when he runs.

The plan makes alot of sense. Enjoy the trip to Moo Moo land.

6:32 pm  
Blogger Luckylegs said...

Hadd for Ancients! How do you think that makes me feel?

8:22 pm  
Blogger Thomas said...

Ewen, I know you are shy and reserved, but that is along Australian guidelines. Shy and reserved in Australia equals to loud mouthed in Ireland.

7:14 am  
Anonymous Steve said...

Well that sounds like a plan. I'm thinking for my Gold Coast training might include more speed work than than I have previously.

Thanks for your support and words of encouragement last week at Canberra. Strange, you mentioned at one point that I must have brought the rain, you know, I couldn't stop thinking about that for quite a while.

10:26 am  
Blogger Scott said...

Hey Ewen

it's going to be fun doing those barefoot 100 to 150 metre sprints on the grass/frost of a cold Canberra morning. Still better than doing them in Queensland were they have bindi-eyes year round ;)

by the way, the only thing really ancient about you Ewen are your jokes!

4:47 pm  
Blogger strewth said...

For someone so ancient you're looking pretty good! Good luck with your training plans! Photos are interesting!! That runner got the treatment!

10:18 pm  
Blogger Stu said...

Sounds like a good plan to keep the legs ticking over quickly, regularly.

4:56 am  
Blogger Chad in the Arizona Desert said...

I like the plan. I think it covers everything and I would be surprised if you didn't increase your 3k times quite a bit doing it. I'm looking forward to hearing how it goes.

6:04 am  
Blogger Grellan said...

Good luck with your change in training plan Ewen. You seem to be clinging to the Term Hadd or should that be "Hadd been".

Whats next Hadd for sprinters?

8:32 am  
Blogger tim said...

hey a pic of me :) Why is Rob smiling? Man marathons hurt.

8:52 am  
Blogger Tea said...

Does that make me "pre-ancient" at 40? Or am I in denial?

12:26 pm  
Blogger 2P said...

Ahh but the wisdom of the ancients is undeniable :)

6:32 pm  
Blogger trailblazer777 said...

Yes what 2P said...

Sounds like a good plan for the 3k goal! I might follow your progress and try and acquire/steal/share in your secrets too, could be handy down the track, but its all about sharing our expertise to some degree. Great photos! Those P-platers sound a bit like my driving. I still have a 23 year old attitude even though I'll be 35 next year.
I wonder if you saw any of the Olympic Torch relay first hand today...?

11:31 pm  
Blogger bill carter said...

Hi Ewen

Very nice to make your acquaintance and fascinating stuff. I am joining the ranks of the ancients as I turn 40 this week.. and I'm actually in much better shape than I was at 25!

I have some experience with the Lydiard training and think it is brilliant.

Again, nice to meet you and best of luck with the training.

5:50 am  
Blogger Dusty said...

Hadd for Ancients... I do like the part about how to remedy it with strides. I'm not 40 yet, but anything I can do to hold on to it longer! haha! I have been forgetting my strides, this will help me remember. :)

1:50 am  
Blogger jen said...

Sounds like a great training plan, although I think "ancient" is a bit of an overstatement! Great pictures- congrats to those runners!

8:33 am  

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