Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The components of a great Triathlon run week

Spring has sprung and before you know it, the Triathlon season will be upon us. With any task in life the goal is to finish strong, and your next triathlon should be no different. Knowing you have strength to finish your last event in a triathlon(the run), can be a huge confidence booster. So lets start with what the main components of run week are, and then we will talk about how to put the components together.

Main Components of a run training week

1.Medium long run- This run is a relaxed pace run that is just a tad shy of your long run. I usually undertake this run as part of an easy day. The idea? get out the door, relax and enjoy your run. In my training for example I run 8-10 on my medium long run days and 13-15 on my long days.

2.Speed days on the track- There is a reason I did not simply write speed days. As much as we all hate going to the track(I despise it) and running our guts out, the truth is it gives you a workout that is hard to find anywhere else. the track is a super easy way to compare times in an almost controlled environment. An a example of a track session is.
2 mile warm up
6x800 with a 200 jog rest in between (NO WALKING)
2 mile cool down
The reality is track workouts are simple. choose a pace at which you want you run your 800's and try to keep them consistent throughout the 6.

3.Long run days-Long runs are usually a time when we throw pace out the door and just worry about time or mileage. Don't! Long runs can start easy, but after the first 3-4 miles you should be picking up the pace a bit, and running a steady effort. Don't run your brains out, but give it an honest effort.

4.Tempo runs-Go for a run that is divided into 3 sections. First is the warm up run, easy and relaxed. Next is the middle section of the run where you are running at a face upbeat pace. This pace should not quite be as fast as your track session but close. After this do yourself a favor and cool down.

5.Recovery runs- For many recovery may result in a day off, but it is good for the body to keep moving. Recovery runs are simple. Just get out and run. It doesn't really matter how fast or far (sometimes I just run an easy two miles).

6.Brick Run-Bricks are runs where you first cycle then Immediately following your ride, go for a run. A brick run is only necessary one day a week. It mainly gives you confidence to know that you can run off the bike.

These are the components of a solid run week. Now the question is how do you put it all together? The key is when you have a hard day follow it by a recovery or easy day. Don't stack two hard days back to back. Here are two examples

6 Runs a week
Sunday-Medium long run
Monday-Track session
Tuesday-Off day
Wednesday-Long run
Thursday- Recovery run
Friday-Tempo run
Saturday- Brick Run

5 Runs a week
Sunday-Long run
Monday-day off
Tuesday-Tempo run
Wednesday-Short Brick run
Thursday-Medium long run
Friday-Track session
Saturday-off day

One last note. Speed work (Tempo runs and track workouts) are something that you should not just jump into. It is important to have a solid base before completing these. Read more about Base work Here

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