Seniors’ Endurance Training w/c 5th April

The plan set months ago for this week had us doing 4x800m (400m jog recovery) plus 3x 200m (walk recovery) on Tuesday and a five mile Fartlek with short efforts on Thursday. Malcolm has been talking to some other coaches and wrote some advice on training – including an interesting suggestion for a stretch goal.

Training in Difficult Times

Malcolm Plant writes:

I hope you are well and avoiding this deadly virus. With Tokyo off for a year it means we have not missed out on the opportunity of qualifying. Another training year might just do it!

Although the focus for the Summer is now virtually lost until at least July,  we still could make the best of a bad job. Even I am getting out early in the morning around Woodbank where there are a few runners and even one doing fast reps around the 1k route. However, it is difficult to be motivated to run hard by oneself. Happily (in a way) this is a time of year when its traditional to have a recovery period so the past couple of weeks can be considered to be a sensible hiatus before what would have been the transition into the Summer period.

I have been involved in discussions with some senior coaches in the UK about the transition period we are in and how to deal with the Covid19 situation in particular. As part of this, one of the coaches dug out a review he had undertaken of my own training (from the 1980’s) where he observed that I never took a rest or recovery, so apparently having a recovery period at this time will be a positive thing for us all (if only I had been told in the 70’s!).

So on to some suggestions to make the runs you do more productive and interesting. In the absence of races here are some suggestions:

Simulate track sessions on grass or even the road – this is difficult and less social than we like. Reduce the number of reps and reduce the recovery, perfect to be run like a fartlek, keep the recoveries short

Do turnarounds, you only need a person less space of 50 meters to do 3 x 5 minutes with 5 mins between sets – you will remember this was deceptively hard

On your runs, treat every hill and rise as a target and run hard on every hill, this also has a core strengthening effect and will enhance the benefit you gain from your precious 30 minutes or so. You might also need to vary pace in a race so its good practice.

Add a fartlek aspect to your runs, short and long bursts as desired. A modification to this is to include into the run a couple of miles where you slowly increase the to 85% of maximum then drop the pace right down for a mile before increasing again.

The coaches I spoke to were very keen in this situation to include a time trial once every two weeks. Choose a course of between 1K to 1.5K  (other distances are available). Do a warmup run, blast the trial and then warm down home. Put a clock on it if possible.

Stick to the basic week design of two sessions, do more stretching and core work at home. Remember a tempo run should be conducted at about 90% effort (80 -90% max heart rate)

Take the opportunity to include more recovery into the week.

If there is an appetite I can set two sessions a week to help, let me know

All the best

Malcolm

Seniors’ Endurance Training w/c 29th March

Training sessions are cancelled. Please follow government and NHS advice about going outside and take care if you decide to – now is not the time to vistit A&E because you’ve tripped over. Below is what we would’ve been doing in other circumstances:

SUNDAY 29th Long run
MONDAY 30th 5 mile steady
TUESDAY 31th 10 X 400m (200m jog recovery) 3 x 150m fast walk back recovery.
WEDNESDAY 1st 3 mile steady
THURSDAY 2nd 5mile Tempo (pace increase after 2 miles)
FRIDAY 3rd rest day
SATURDAY 4th Sustained run

Tuesday’s session could be done on time. e.g. if you run 400m in 90s, find a quiet spot where you don’t need to pass people and do 10x90s fast, with 90s rest in between.

Plan to April

Malcolm writes:

The February and March planning develops a little to add variety into some of the sessions and suggests ways in which steady and tempo runs (of any distance) can be slightly modified to add benefit. These techniques might be applied during a standard run but can also be applied (with self-control during a Park run or race) 

Even when not specified it is assumed a normal warm up program is completed.

 The content of the sessions follows good practice and I do not feel it is necessary at this stage to adopt a two-tier approach. If the sessions are two much then the number of repetitions can be reduced (lower the number or leave out the longest rep in a pyramid), if the content is too low then a repetition can be added, or the speed of the effort increased.

Alternatively, other runs can be added, or the length of runs increased in the week to add mileage.

My observation at the present time is that the effort expended in the group sessions is about right and the “challenge” is about right. A long run, two group sessions and a race or tempo run is plenty ( without the support of lottery funding) and if this is done in a week you should need recovery days.

The mileage (if fully followed) is the same at 35+ miles / week. It is appreciated that this is not possible for all athletes and will vary from runner to runner, This is not a problem as recovery from the sessions completed is very important. 

I will clarify the new points as we meet


WEEK APRIL 5TH -11TH
SUNDAY 5th Long run
MONDAY 6th 5 mile steady
TUESDAY 7th 4 X 800m (400m jog recovery) 3 x 200m fast walk back recovery
WEDNESDAY 8th 3 mile steady
THURSDAY 9th 5 mile Fartlek (short 100m – 300m efforts) 1mile w/u 1mile w/d
FRIDAY 10th rest day
SATURDAY 11th Race or sustained run

Cancelled: Joe Moran Track & Field Meeting and The Manchester Mile 2020

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Manchester Harriers & A.C. regret to advise the cancellation of their two June events:

  • The 13th Joe Moran Memorial Veteran Track & Field Meeting on Wednesday 10th June 2020
  • The Manchester Mile on Wednesday 24th June 2020

The decision hasn’t been an easy one. It follows advice from England Athletics that they are extending the suspension of all athletics activity in England to the 31 st May. This would leave too little time to give the events the attention they deserve.

We will bring both events back next year.

Seniors’ Endurance Training w/c 22nd March

Reminder: Training sessions are cancelled.

We’re all going to have to get more creative about keeping fit and training. Things are changing daily so please check government and NHS advice. Below is what we would’ve been doing in other circumstances:

SUNDAY 22nd Long run
MONDAY 23rd 5 mile steady
TUESDAY 24th 2 x (1000m,800m, 400m)(200m jog recovery) 3 x 150m fast walk back rec.
WEDNESDAY 25th 3 mile steady
THURSDAY 26th MHAC Club Parrlauf CANCELLED (20 x 200)
FRIDAY 27th rest day
SATURDAY 28th Sustained run

The distance track sessions could be adapted for time. Find a place you can safely run hard:

  • Tuesday: 2 sets of 4min, 3min, 90seconds with 90 second jog recovery. Then 3x 45 seconds, walk back to where you started.
  • Thursday: Parrlauf. Hmmm. Well, you could try pacing out a 200m stretch in a park and running it 20 times with a 45 second rest between. Or you could pair up with a friend, put your phones on speaker and take it in turns to run 200m then shout “Go!”. Or maybe just do a Fartlek session?

If you’re not going outdoors for whatever reason, you’ll have to get more creative. This French guy did a marathon on his seven meter balcony!

Plan to April

Malcolm writes:

The February and March planning develops a little to add variety into some of the sessions and suggests ways in which steady and tempo runs (of any distance) can be slightly modified to add benefit. These techniques might be applied during a standard run but can also be applied (with self-control during a Park run or race) 

Even when not specified it is assumed a normal warm up program is completed.

 The content of the sessions follows good practice and I do not feel it is necessary at this stage to adopt a two-tier approach. If the sessions are two much then the number of repetitions can be reduced (lower the number or leave out the longest rep in a pyramid), if the content is too low then a repetition can be added, or the speed of the effort increased.

Alternatively, other runs can be added, or the length of runs increased in the week to add mileage.

My observation at the present time is that the effort expended in the group sessions is about right and the “challenge” is about right. A long run, two group sessions and a race or tempo run is plenty ( without the support of lottery funding) and if this is done in a week you should need recovery days.

The mileage (if fully followed) is the same at 35+ miles / week. It is appreciated that this is not possible for all athletes and will vary from runner to runner, This is not a problem as recovery from the sessions completed is very important. 

I will clarify the new points as we meet


WEEK MARCH 29TH -APRIL 4TH
SUNDAY 29th Long run
MONDAY 30th 5 mile steady
TUESDAY 31th 10 X 400m (200m jog recovery) 3 x 150m fast walk back recovery
WEDNESDAY 1st 3 mile steady
THURSDAY 2nd 5mile Tempo (pace increase from 2 ml)
FRIDAY 3rd rest day
SATURDAY 4th Race or sustained run

WEEK APRIL 5TH -11TH
SUNDAY 5th Long run
MONDAY 6th 5 mile steady
TUESDAY 7th 4 X 800m (400m jog recovery) 3 x 200m fast walk back recovery
WEDNESDAY 8th 3 mile steady
THURSDAY 9th 5 mile Fartlek (short 100m – 300m efforts) 1mile w/u 1mile w/d
FRIDAY 10th rest day
SATURDAY 11th Race or sustained run

Training Cancelled

Hi Athletes, Parents, Coaches and helpers
It is with great sadness that we are announcing the cancelling of all training sessions at both Wythenshawe Park Athletic Track and Sportcity Manchester until the end of the April 2020, when an update will be given. 

Please see the statement from our National Governing Body inline with the Governments stance:

Coronavirus Statement (updated 17 March) – Athletics & Running

Currently there will be no training sessions held by the club, Club Paalauf is postponded and will be re-scheduled, Primary League this weekend is cancelled. 

I will update on any track and field league meetings as I hear from the leagues, as there are one or two in or very close to April and I suspect they may be cancelled.

Please can I ask you to all take care, try to keep fit and healthy and we look forward to re-starting our sessions in due course and hope you will all support us throughtout this time and come back in droves once we are back training.

Thanks for your support.

Regards Debbie

Seniors’ Endurance Training w/c 15th March

Yes, it’s another week, so time for some more training.

Reminder: MHAC Club Paarlauf on Thur 26th March – a continuous relay where teams of two take it in turns to run 200m to complete a fixed distance. It’s a classic, fun form of competition that supports a Spring training program. Contact Malcolm, Debbie or myself if you fancy it.

SUNDAY 15th Long run / Wilsmlow Half
MONDAY 16th 5 mile steady
TUESDAY 17th 200,400,600,800,1000,800,600,400,200 (200m jog rec)
WEDNESDAY 18th 3 mile steady
THURSDAY 19th 4 mile Fartlek (variable efforts) 1mile w/u 1mile w/d
FRIDAY 20th rest day
SATURDAY 21st Race or sustained run

Plan to April

Malcolm writes:

The February and March planning develops a little to add variety into some of the sessions and suggests ways in which steady and tempo runs (of any distance) can be slightly modified to add benefit. These techniques might be applied during a standard run but can also be applied (with self-control during a Park run or race) 

Even when not specified it is assumed a normal warm up program is completed.

 The content of the sessions follows good practice and I do not feel it is necessary at this stage to adopt a two-tier approach. If the sessions are two much then the number of repetitions can be reduced (lower the number or leave out the longest rep in a pyramid), if the content is too low then a repetition can be added, or the speed of the effort increased.

Alternatively, other runs can be added, or the length of runs increased in the week to add mileage.

My observation at the present time is that the effort expended in the group sessions is about right and the “challenge” is about right. A long run, two group sessions and a race or tempo run is plenty ( without the support of lottery funding) and if this is done in a week you should need recovery days.

The mileage (if fully followed) is the same at 35+ miles / week. It is appreciated that this is not possible for all athletes and will vary from runner to runner, This is not a problem as recovery from the sessions completed is very important. 

I will clarify the new points as we meet

WEEK MARCH 22ND-28TH
SUNDAY 22nd Long run
MONDAY 23rd 5 mile steady
TUESDAY 24th 2 x (1000m,800m, 400m)(200m jog recovery) 3 x 150m fast walk back rec.
WEDNESDAY 25th 3 mile steady
THURSDAY 26th MHAC Club Parrlauf (20 x 200)
FRIDAY 27th rest day
SATURDAY 28th Race or sustained run

WEEK MARCH 29TH -APRIL 4TH
SUNDAY 29th Long run
MONDAY 30th 5 mile steady
TUESDAY 31th 10 X 400m (200m jog recovery) 3 x 150m fast walk back recovery
WEDNESDAY 1st 3 mile steady
THURSDAY 2nd 5mile Tempo (pace increase from 2 ml)
FRIDAY 3rd rest day
SATURDAY 4th Race or sustained run

WEEK APRIL 5TH -11TH
SUNDAY 5th Long run
MONDAY 6th 5 mile steady
TUESDAY 7th 4 X 800m (400m jog recovery) 3 x 200m fast walk back recovery
WEDNESDAY 8th 3 mile steady
THURSDAY 9th 5 mile Fartlek (short 100m – 300m efforts) 1mile w/u 1mile w/d
FRIDAY 10th rest day
SATURDAY 11th Race or sustained run