Wednesday, October 01, 2008

slogged my way into work

MR: Do you have all of your runners use a heart rate monitor?
I try to instill in everyone that this is something useful, but I can't force anyone to put it on. Some people just don't like to use them. They don't like the feeling of running around with something strapped to their chest. You can learn a lot about your body from one if you use it regularly.

MR: Like what?
Like if you're doing a workout and you can't get your heart rate up, your muscles are telling your cardiovascular system what to do. They're tired, maybe glycogen depleted, you might be on the verge of overtraining.

This was absolutely the case with me today. I did somewhere between 13.5 and 14 (no Garmin) and my average heart rate was only 133, but my legs felt like they weighed 100 lbs each and I was ready to be done after 45 minutes.

I've been reading Hudson's book, "Run Faster." I think it's great stuff and makes Canova's ideas more accessible. It does have some serious editorial flaws though I'm afraid. The text and the tables/schedules look like they were written by two different people. He talks about different threshold paces (60' pace, 90' pace, and 2.5h pace) but then the schedules use different terminology. Sometimes you can figure it out (marathon/half marathon is probably 2.5h pace), but sometimes you can't. The tables also aren't consistent. They should "aerobic support" runs for a hypothetical peak-70mpw marathoner in one table, but when they put the whole schedule together, it doesn't match. Hudson also says you should double if doing more than 70 miles per week, but then the schedules have the Level 3 marathoner do 84 miles in a week in singles. Of course you should craft your own schedule, but it would be nice to have something to start with that didn't violate the principles of the book.

There's also some annoying salesmanship ("In my adaptive training system...") that I'm sure is not from Hudson. It sounds a lot more like his co-author, Matt Fitzgerald.

Ok, now that I've complained, I think it just might be the best practical running book out there. It distills a lot from "Run Strong" into more of a how-to book.

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