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2015-04-02 4:11 AM
in reply to: rizztalah

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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?
Given your age (I assume under 30) and previous times, yes, it's definitely possible to reach your previous times, and probably to improve on them substantially. As for why you're not improving as you expected with coaching, could be a lot of things. If your volume has really increased, maybe fatigue is masking improvement and you'll see the gains when you are well-rested and racing. Or maybe the training approach isn't working for you, or there's some other issue like anemia, poor sleep and nutrition, etc. that's holding you back. I'd investigate the latter two maybes IF race results don't show some improvement.

At my age (45), I just seem to train hard to do about the same, knowing that my PB's in everything except possibly biking (since I had no background in training/racing for that sport) came decades ago.....Aging sucks!

As for being short, so's Rinny. She won Kona. And super-skinny isn't necessarily the best body type for tri either. I am (well, sorta) tall and quite thin, and I regularly get my butt kicked on the bike by heavier women, and get so cold in transition after swimming (unless water's super warm) that I can lose major time there shivering and fumbling with things. It's really only a useful body type for running.

Putting it positively, you're buoyant, not carrying extra height on the run, and aerodynamic!


2015-04-02 6:29 AM
in reply to: rizztalah

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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?
Originally posted by rizztalah
Ok... So, how do you know if you've reached your absolute potential?



You will probably never know. You will never know if you would have done better or worst using another training method, more work, less life stress....

All you can do is try and measure improvement and as long as there is improvement you are going in the right direction. Maybe not perfect, but the right direction

As long as one sport is progressing and two aren't digressing, you are going in the right direction.

Measuring improvement does not have to be the absolute time on the 5k race. I personally think it's the wrong way to measure it.
Some people don't do as well race day. Yet they are improving and if they can fix race day they will one day see the results. To give up because 3 consecutive races showed no improvement is wrong. What if your training data shows you are improving your just haven't learned to convert it to race results. This happens ALL the time.

Getting performance out on race day is a whole other discussion. A very fascinating one.

But back on topic, there are many ways to measure improvement, As a matter of fact one should try and measure improvement in their training so they can adjust it accordingly.

And BTW, put your times in perspective. Your 10km time, put in JD equivalient marathon time is pretty close to a BQ. So don't poopoo on it.
Also, to hit your goals requires a VDOT improvement of 5 VDOTs. Not a walk in the park and not something that will occur in 6months. Tell you what though, your ability to BQ is very real. Figure out your strengths and weakness. Pick your events to your strengths.

I strongly suggest you don't try and compare your times to 16 year old male mile runners or 32 year old male Kona winners. Find "standards" that you can be proud of that are age and sex adjusted and measure yourself against those. BQ for running, Cat 1-5 for cycling, USMS swim times.....at the pointier end.





2015-04-02 7:21 AM
in reply to: jennifer_runs

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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?

Originally posted by jennifer_runs
Originally posted by mcmanusclan5Take a group of 50' 10k runners that have similar backgrounds in the sport (assume fairly new to running, all the same age and sex).  Then have them all train the same way whilst trying to get to a target of 48' (these times are made up with no particular reason for 50' vs. 55' or whatever).

Is it genetics that determines who gets to 48' first? 

It would be facile to assume that whomever arrives first should also have the highest potential, but biology being biology, I'd bet there are slightly different genetics between improvement from couch to finishing to locally fast to locally winning to nationally fast, etc. and the rate of improvement attainable.  Maybe they converge at the pointiest end?

Just curious...  Anyone seen data on something like this?

Matt

It depends-- if all of those people are 50-minute 10K runners with no training (i.e., that's their baseline potential), then that IS a reflection of their genetics right there.. Although the younger you are the faster you recover and the more hard training you can do. There will be a genetic difference in recovery/training potential as well. So different people will be able to improve at different rates depending on their biology.

If all else is equal there is a fair chance they won't all be starting at 50'.

2015-04-02 8:29 AM
in reply to: marcag

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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?

Originally posted by marcag
Originally posted by rizztalah  Some people don't do as well race day. Yet they are improving and if they can fix race day they will one day see the results. To give up because 3 consecutive races showed no improvement is wrong. What if your training data shows you are improving your just haven't learned to convert it to race results. This happens ALL the time. Getting performance out on race day is a whole other discussion. A very fascinating one. .

That's excellent,....and right on the money.  That would be a discussion worth having.

2015-04-02 8:56 AM
in reply to: 0

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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?

Originally posted by rizztalah .... Now, I have a coach training me but my practice/training sessions are still showing me similar times.... This is leaving me a little disheartened. My fastest 5k this far has been 23 flat... But my goal is 20 flat. Is that unrealistic? I hit 20k flat in high school cross country, but then the season ended so I wonder if I could have gotten better And currently my 10k is 47... But my goal is 43. Mind you, I'm the hot headed little dwarf from LOTR so sometimes I also feel convinced I can't achieve these simply because I'm not a tall, thin, elf. D:

Yes, it is unrealistic to make the goal for your run split in a triathlon to be the same as your high school open run time.  

There are 2-3 problems with setting your run goal equal to your high school run split.

1) When you were running Cross Country in High school you were only training for one disciple.  The fitness that is required for cycling and swim are different than that required for running, so as you train for all three you are going to be well rounded to complete well in three events, but aren't going to peak any an one event until you give up the other two.

2) Assume that when you are Triathlon Fit (not Run fit as your run won't peak when you are swimming and cycling 3-4 times a week) that you can run an open 5K in a certain amount of time.  Add 8% to that run time and that is what is realistic for run split in a triathlon.  Coming off a bike and swim you don't have a fresh set a legs and it isn't realistic to set the same goal time as you would for an open race.  So assuming you could run a 5K in 20 minutes your realistic goal for your 5K triathlon split would be 21:40. 

3) You are comparing your High school times to current performance.  I was running sub 17:00 minute 5K is high school, but in an open 5K now am happy with anything close to 18:00 minutes.  I am not saying that you current 5K time can't be what it was in high school, but if you don't know what your current open 5K time is then yes, you are setting unrealistic goals.  Do a time trial or run and open 5K to help you set your goals.  

If you past Triathlons have had run splits in the 23 minute range, then I would think that your current goals should be to go under 23 minutes.  Once you get there then your next goal could be to run under 22:45.  Then 22:30 etc.  Make your goal to learn from each race.  How was your pacing durring the race?  Did you go out too fast?  Did you go out too slow?  What would you have done differently?

Also, I will throw one more tib bit in that I have learned over my years of running.  About 7 years ago I had a work schedule that made so that I couldn't always make it to the local running club's Tuesday night track workout.  There however was a youth USA Track & Field Team that meet 4 nights a week and I knew the coach and he would let me run with them.  I was in my 30's and had been training for 1/2 marathons and marathons.  I would however join the group of 14-17 year old boys on the 400m repeats.  Several of those boys could run 12 x 400m with splits under 65 seconds each. They had a lot of raw speed and great work ethic.  Off the line they would leave me in the dust.  By the 100 meter mark I was always about 8 body lengths behind the group.  By the 200m mark I could see those boys straining to run their hardest.  I would be very relaxed and would actually be gaining on them. I usually could catch the main group by 300 meter.  Many of them would kick hard in the last 100 meters and pull away from me but it was interesting to see how smooth my form was compared to the high school boys.  I didn't have the engine that they did and couldn't ever beat them in 400 meter repeats, but I saw a few of them at a local 5K once and was surprised when I beat them all.  Week after week they would dust me in 400m repeats, but in a 5K race my smooth relaxed form was more efficient. My top speed could never match the high school boys but my sustainable pace was faster than their because I had learned to conserve energy and pace myself.      

 

 



Edited by BlueBoy26 2015-04-02 9:03 AM
2015-04-02 8:57 AM
in reply to: Left Brain


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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?
Originally posted by Left Brain

Originally posted by marcag
Originally posted by rizztalah  Some people don't do as well race day. Yet they are improving and if they can fix race day they will one day see the results. To give up because 3 consecutive races showed no improvement is wrong. What if your training data shows you are improving your just haven't learned to convert it to race results. This happens ALL the time. Getting performance out on race day is a whole other discussion. A very fascinating one. .

That's excellent,....and right on the money.  That would be a discussion worth having.




It's a competition. Even for a guy like me who isn't really "competing". It's still a competition.
It creates all sorts of anxieties and disruptors. I compete in music, both solo and in group. I'd say in tri speak, I'm an "elite" who had a chance to go 'pro' back in the day. I rub shoulders with the best in the world. And with MAYBE one or two exceptions, none are machines and all will admit that while they can lay down an incredible performance, virtually NOBODY will perform as well in front of the judge than they do in their own basement.

Occasionally, something will click in the band setting where due to some stroke of luck and weather cooperation, our sound will be so much better than usual and that takes some of the fear anxiety out, that we will perform near our top standard. But it's rare and usually is a result of dumb luck that causes groupwide relaxation and mitigation of anxiety.

While I'm super competitive as a musician, it's always about the journey. The competition (winning or losing) is the cherry on the sundae. It's knowing that without all that effort we'd be WORSE than even our poorest performance in front of a judge. As a complete tri hobbyist and former fat guy, tris are all about the journey for me too.

And for the record, I've shaved nearly a minute off my 'mile' even over growing distances.
However, last year my fastest ever run over 4 miles was at a race. Granted it was HyVee where I'd been preparing like it was an Olympic and they switched it to a sprint so I just sorta got mad and went "all out" figuring I'd have plenty in the tank. Realized I could and started working on improving speed.


2015-04-02 9:28 AM
in reply to: 3mar

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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?

Originally posted by 3mar Here's a way to eliminate both issues; just focus on the next step or goal, where none of this comes into debate. If you're at a 19:30 5k and your goal is to go faster, set sub-19 as a goal, not 15. Day by day, step by step. If you start anything, then compare yourself to the top of the field, you'll end up giving up. But that next incremental step, that's always available, and don't worry about the end, or debate what that end is....it's pointless. Just focus on the next goal. As humans, we are happiest when we have a goal to strive for and especially when we accomplish it. At that point, for continued happiness, set another goal. Not too far that it's not readily achievable and not too easy. That's what works for me. That wall we're debating doesn't play into that conversation, and it doesn't matter.

^^^ This has been my approach as well.  Set an aggressive but attainable goal each year and then try to execute.  I'm not expecting to run a 35' 10K this year, but if I can shave 30 seconds off my best time last year, then I'd call that a very successful training season.

I'm turning 44 this year and so I'll have to accept diminishing returns as I get older.  At some point (hopefully decades from now) simply maintaining fitness and not losing any speed will be the target.  Or at least lose fitness slower that everyone else in my age bracket

2015-04-02 5:10 PM
in reply to: Scott71

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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?

I just wanted to add that I used to wonder how people could run faster 800m splits in a 1600m race than their open 800m PR or a faster 5K split in a 10k than their open 5k PR.  Many runner that I know (including myself) have done just that.  I know think that it is because younger runner (including myself when in my teens & 20's) tend to muscle their way to get more speed.  This makes them faster for short distances but actually slows them down over longer distances.  

Also, the slower you are the easier it is to improve.  The faster you are the harder it is to improve.  If you running a 50 minute open 10K and get a coach you will likely see quick improvements.  If you are running a 23 minute run split in a 5K in a triathlon, then you are already pretty fast and getting a coach won't see you dropping 2 minutes ever race like the 50 minute 10K runner might.   I don't have the specifics but it seems like Michael Johnson only cut off something like .3 second from his 200m time over 10 year of dedicated training.  It was worth it to him though so he stuck with it.  

2015-04-03 4:56 PM
in reply to: rizztalah

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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?
My first year of running I ditched my iPod so I could hear myself think. I found myself telling...myself...that "it's not about speed, it's about distance."

I do my long runs at 9:20-9:40 min/mi.

2015-04-03 5:49 PM
in reply to: Clempson

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Subject: RE: How do you run so damn fast!!?
A wise man on this site once said when asked about building running speed "run lots. mostly easy, some hard".
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