Simeon- 

  • Take two weeks off; no rush to get back into things; your biggest races aren't until late October/ November

  • As always, the primary goal is long-term development, so we'll continue to take a balanced approach, improving every component of training 400 to 5K.  I want you to be good for a really long time. 

    • That being said, since we include all components of training at all times (just in different volumes/frequencies), it's easy to shift one way or another, depending on your goals this spring.

      • The next step on the chart are ~1:46/3:55 and I think those are good goals for next spring if all goes well.  Had you run a fresh 800m, I think you were 1:47 high/1:48 low this season, so both of those are logical improvements. 

So the goals for this summer: 

  1. Improve basic speed via Max Speed (Sprint-Float-Sprint) & Acceleration (5-8s Hill Sprints) & Plyo work

  2. Improve lactate threshold via Tempo Runs/ Ingebrigtsen-esque Fartleks (3:1) & (5:2)

  3. Maintain Mile/800 speed

    1. 30s Hills @ Mile (stand-alone workout) ​

    2. 80's @ 800m (post LT work) 

  4. Continue building daily volume via easy runs, med-long & long runs. 

    1. You could probably substitute one of your aqua jogging days with a 30' run​

  5. Injury-Resistance via pre/post-run routines

Your First 3 weeks back, you're just running + all of the pre/post run work 

Week 1: 30' easy runs/ 40' Med Long/ 60' Long + pre/post & any speed/strides

Week 2: 40' easy runs/ 50' med-Long/ 70' Long + pre/post & any speed/strides

Week 3: 50' easy runs/ 60' med-long/ 80' Long + pre/post ​& any speed/strides

Week 4: Add workouts 

I chatted with Boo Schexnayder, arguably the best speed/strength coach in the world on how to rearrange our weekly schedule to make sure we get the most out of our speed days, plyo/strength work to make sure we're strong and fast, so the weekly schedule looks a little different than last year; more like what we did 2 years ago.     

14-Day Cycle

M- End Run + Speed (SFS)/ Core & Plyo 

T- Tempo Run or (5:2) Fartlek + Strength

W- Med-Long Run (Hilly) + Rope & Roll

Th- End Run + Acceleration (5-8s HS)/ Core & Plyo

F- (3:1) Fartlek or 30s Hills

S- Long Run- Easy/ Flat 

S- Off 

STRENGTH TRAINING QUESTIONS

You're smart and like to know about training, which I appreciate,  so I'll go a little into the woods, here!   I know you had talked about some upper-body strength, so we'll look at that, too towards the end.  I also like a little upper-body work for runners. 

Strength Training is a lot like running where different intensities/volumes do different things. 

  • General Strength (good for injury resistance & relative strength)= high reps, lower weight (what we do T/F) 

  • Hypertrophy (bigger muscles, which we avoid since it lowers VO2 max)= ie 3 sets of 8-12, moderately heavy

  • Basic/Max Strength (improving the actual strength of the muscles)= ie. 3 sets of 4-8, heavier

  • Power (improving force against the ground = could be Olympic lifts or Plyos/= ie. 3-5 sets of 2-4; lighter weights so you can move fast.  

    • There's just irrefutable research that show that plyo's work to improve performance, so we're adding a Plyo progression for XC and Track.  

I love strength training, as it has a ton of advantages.  This is an area we're improving this summer, as we got off-track during COVID a couple of years ago. 

  • enhanced running performance (especially if used after hard sessions, which we do on T/F) 

  • increased running economy (spend less energy running at any pace) 

  • endocrine system benefits via growth hormones, etc.

Here's the days that Boo suggested to use for ancillary training. 

Mon & Thu- Speed (Mon) Acceleration (Thu) + Plyo (Skips & Multi-Jumps) / Core-Stability

Tues & Fri General/Relative Strength (Bodyweight, Kettlebell, Medball) 

Mon & Thursday plyo's.  These develop power, which helps always, but especially Mile and below. 

Tuesday & Friday mornings we'll always do General Strength, which is non-negotiable...it's like as essential as weekly mileage.

Those afternoons (Tue/Fri) would be excellent days to add some of the missing ingredients:  

  • basic/max strength

  • power (ie. Olympic type lifts.)   

You could also cross train as a double on those days to make the workout days the really "hard days".   I'll send those recommendations to everyone this week.  

UPPER BODY WORK

So, this is a really great question.  

Personally, I like a little bit of upper body work because I like a strength training program to have balance and you can get some endocrine system benefits without having to further fatigue running muscles. 

 

Strength training exercises are divided into movements.  Our morning sessions hit each movement. 

  • Push/Press (upper body movements) 

  • Pulling (could be upper body, ie. rows) 

  • Squat

  • Hinge (like a deadlift) 

  • Carry

  • Rotation 

  • Brace (like planks) 

The reason I only say a little bit of upper body work is because the function of the upper body is simply to counter balance what's going on below the hips.  There's no force created by the arms/upper body being stronger in the upper body doesn't necessarily make you faster. 

When you're racing, you definitely FEEL & NOTICE the acidosis in your arms, chest...and muscles that moves.  Lactic acid is produced in the running muscles, but the hydrogen ions get into the blood stream and mess with contraction of all muscles.  

Coaches often say "Go to the Arms!" because they see runners slowing down and their arms stop moving so much.  But when you recognize that the arms are simply counterbalancing the what goes on below the hips, you realize the arms are moving less because you're "lactic" and the acidosis affects muscular contraction, making your strides shorter and less powerful.  It's hard to notice strides being less powerful but when you're watching you can "see" the arms, so coaches are always yelling "Go to the arms!"... and I always laugh inside because that's not going to do anything! 

 

Here's a screenshot from an Altis course by Dan Pfaff that I took; Pfaff's probably knows more about biomechanics than anyone in the world.  In a podcast, Mike Smith said the first thing he did when he got a coaching job was buy Pfaff coffee and sit and ask advice! 

Screen Shot 2022-06-29 at 7.12.41 PM.png

 

So for June and July, here's what you can add in the weight room... and I'll share this with everyone.  

 

It's simply filling in some gaps that we don't do with our general/relative strength in the mornings.  For distance runners, Boo recommended just a few lifts done really well in addition to the general strength work in the AM. 

If you do these Tues/Fri, I think aqua-jogging might fit perfectly.  

Dumbbell Clean & Push Press 3x 6-8

Dumbbell Bench Press  3x6-8

Trap Bar Deadlift 3x 6-8

We'd progress/periodize like running, so August & September will be different and then October & November different, too.