As I mentioned prior I’m using the Stryd Marathon training plan. It’s an interesting plan in a few ways. The workouts have more variation in the workouts themselves than other plans I’ve used or seen. Also the initial month is very low speed long distance. Distances aren’t that long per se but this is obviously not a couch to marathon plan since week 1 has a 8 mile run at the end and the short distance is 4 miles.
Economy of form leads to being able to go the distance”
When I first started I couldn’t do a 4 minute run…
The slow runs also have some kind of ‘strides’ as Stryd calls them or sprints or intervals as I grew up calling them. The first few runs that have sprints are pretty simple 3 to 6 mile zone 1 running (super slow) and then 100 meters balls to the wall full on sprint with 1 minute jog or walk. Repeat the sprint cycle 4 to 10 times depending on the workout.
After the first 3 or 4 weeks of training the tail end road sprints change to hill sprints which start at 8 second balls out sprinting uphill followed by 1 minute jog or walk, repeat 4 to 10 times.
What I find the most interesting/intriguing about the Stryd plan is the alleged science behind their rhyme and reason of their training activities. Each one is, allegedly, designed to target a specific function of the running physiology. LSD’s or Long Slow Distances which are slow slow are designed to strengthen the heart, promote healing (which I could use right now) and increase oxygen delivery ability at the cellular level. That all sounds pretty science-ey doesn’t it?
The sprints, especially hill sprints are designed to increase neuromuscular capabilities, strength and leg sprint stiffness. These lead to more economy of form. Economy of form leads to being able to go the distance.
There are a total of 8 different areas the various styles of workouts targets. Remember Rocky 3? Dolph had all the Russian science behind him and all Rocky had was star power so he won? In reality science is a pretty big boost toward being able to accomplish what you want in the time yuou want it. Obviously runners used to just ‘get out there and run’. But it does make one think how much better those awesome runners of yore could have been if they’d of trained with the knowledge we have now of anatomy, physiology, kinesthesiology and in general just more understanding of the human body and it’s bio-mechnics.
I for one feel my slow, structured approach to running even #notrunning as I do has got me there safely and with minimal risk. Indeed it was only when I started added extra ‘off book’ runs especially ones on technical trails and hills that I started having problems with my knee. Just the one. The left one.
At some point Time will come crashing down with a ‘this is is my friend, this is as far as you can get now, after 5 decades of abuse, this is the maximum your body can output’. So we’ll see where that line is.
During my sprints on Tuesday, granted just 100 meters at a time, I hit a pace of 6:04 per mile. All in all I don’t really think that’s anything to complain about given my age, lack of training and the fact that I outweigh the average elite runner by over 100 lbs. Those are some big handicaps to overcome. Time will tell how far over that hump I can get.