By Coach Zac Newman ( Coach/Founder of Run2PB)
There are many pieces to the P.B puzzle, it’s definitely not just one session, its a culmination of lots of dedication, commitment and consistency.
Whether you are trying to crack the 25min for your next Parkrun or Sub 3hrs for the Marathon, one key ingredient that has helped many of our athletes in the Progression Run Training session. Progression runs can be adopted by athletes of all abilities and at different points of the training cycle.
Progression runs can be used at the start of the training block to work on getting the body and mind tuned into running workouts, getting a sense for pace judgement, learning how to relax early in the session and be patient.
They can also be used in the middle and late stages of a training cycle to help boost your endurance and work on nailing the closing stages of your races.
Progression runs are versatile, they can be done anywhere and on any surface, and can be as little is 30mins to as long as 2hrs.
The first part of the session is generally done at your standard easy running pace, slightly above warm-up pace. This generally lasts for 10-20mins, before the main body of the session commences, however it is all continuous – no stopping!
Then based on your coaches plan, the pace is increased every 5-10 mins, sometimes in marathon training as much as 20min blocks.
The length and pace of these depends on the target event and stage of the training cycle.
An example progression run session could look like this:
1st 10mins @ 4min pace per Km,
2nd 10mins @ 3:50 kms,
3rd 10mins @ 3:40 kms.
4th 10mins @ 3.30 kms
All relative paces to your current fitness level and goals, and in consultation with your coach.
It’s the gradual increase of pace that is the key to this session, getting used to feeling controlled, absorbing the subtle pace changes and then relaxing again, concentrating on rhythm and a relaxed form.
As the session continues on, fatigue in the legs sets in yet it’s more of a gradual set in as opposed to the feeling you get during a shorter reps session.
Patience is truly a skill that is so important when it comes to race day.
It is often the difference between nailing that P.B on the big occasion and blowing up from being greedy or reaching too early on in a race.
On paper the session may look ‘too easy’ but it’s important to not underestimate this session or force the pace early, it’s part of the session and process in going through the gears to ensure by the end you are running on tired legs.
Don’t worry this session will bring you unstuck if you don’t stick to the plan.
Controlling the pace and running within yourself over the duration of the progression run ensures when you hit the last segment of the progression run, you are still running efficiently and relaxed, yet strongly and ultimately finishing the session, feeling like they could keep going.
Running on tired legs, but getting faster over the course of the session, makes you not only stronger physically but also mentally.
The massive boost in confidence that this session can give you is what may propel you towards that next PB.
The session allows you to get into situations where its uncomfortable but you have to manage it, and work your way through it and continue to push on with fatigued legs, that simulation is exactly what ensures your body and mind is ready come race day.
Runners can use progression runs in preparation for races from 5km through to the marathon. You can do these just about anywhere, however, if you can simulate the environment/elevation of target race day then that is ideal.
Progression runs can get you fit, strong and teach you how to close out a race and storm through the field!
It’s just important you have a coach or structured program that has carefully planned this session in your program. This is to ensure it fits into your training week and cycle and that they manage the recovery that is required around that type of session.
–Are you looking for a an online running coach?
Run2PB Online coaching was founded by 4 elite athletes based in Australia
It’s quickly become one of Australia’s leading online coaching groups ,with its innovative online training platform, highly personalised and structured programs, you can be coached to a new P.B, over any distance from 5km through to Ultra Marathons.
Friends of Valaar are eligible for a 10% off all coaching programs on www.run2pb.co
Use the code “Valaar10%” when signing up.
Run2PB is an online run coach training platform where you can access world class coaches and athletes. Run2PB helps you train for your goal race and meticulously plans your personalised program, listens to your constant feedback and monitors your every training session.
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