AeT Testing and poor running.

  • Creator
  • #34335

    Hi folks,

    Recently bought the book and am trying to formalise my training with an eye to some technically easy routes on 4000m+ peaks in the Alps.

    Firstly some bio. I’m 44, worked for much of my working life instructing in the UK mountains and hills, the last 6 more (not exclusively) desk-bound. Previously cycled but never done a lot of running. Resting Hr is low 50s, max 179.

    After 30 minutes warm up, I ran for 1 hour on a track keeping (as best I could) at a target pace of 138. TP calculates my Pa:Hr as -4.57%:

    Q1: Can I then presume my AeT is 138?

    My frustration is that this is painfully slow, 9:46 min/km – as I was doing the test I realised I could walk faster. So I tried for 1km, 7:39km/min, avg Hr 137:

    Q2: Is this just down to poor running efficiency?

    I’ve tried working on my form and cadence but as soon as I do my Hr soars.

    Q3: Should I stick to run/walk intervals and downhill run/uphill walk for a while?

    Q4: Is it ok at this state to throw in intense efforts? (I’ve been running 5k Parkrun with my son to encourage him.) This is less than 10% of my weekly volume.

    Q5: Is an intense effort best tacked onto the end or beginning of an Aerobic run, or best to keep them totally separate?

    Thanks for reading to the end!

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  • Participant
    crwebber707 on #34345

    Hi hi! I’m following this for interest as we have some strong similarity across the board

    Anonymous on #34379


    Thanks for writing in with your questions. Your’s is a very common question and you will find many forum threads on this subject. Here is a currently active thread That pertains exactly to this question of switching from cycling to running. You may also need to read this one.

    First the good news: a negative Pa:Hr ratio indicates that you ran the second half faster for the same HR or your HR dropped for the same speed during the second half. The upshot of this is that your AeT is probably considerably higher than 138. Id say try this gain with 145.

    Now for some “other” news:

    Moving from cycling to running as a main training modality usually presents these sorts of challenges. While cycling you are seated and strapped to a machine that dictates your movements and range of motion. While there is certainly technique involved in developing an efficient pedal stroke, the legs are still confined to the same circular motion regardless of how smoothly and where you apply force with your legs. On top of that, the circular motion that has become well ingrained in your motor nervous system is quite and unnatural movement pattern and very far from a running pattern.

    I have coached Cross Country Skiing for much of my life. As such I have often been asked to give people ski lessons. I find that cyclist typically have the hardest time adapting to the new movement patterns required in skiing. Runners often struggle too but not as much or as frequently as cyclists. When changing exercise modes this is to be expected. I am sure my cycling economy is very poor.

    So, you need to run, run and run some more to imprint the correct movement patterns. Watch some running videos on Youtube. My favorites for technique are to watch some top Kenyan runners but there are quite a bunch of running technique tutorial videos too. Pay attention a absorb this technique. Try it out on your runs. See if you can run like that for 50 meters even then walk till you recover a bit then run again. If you can’t run well for 50m you’ll never run well for 5000m. Running on a slight down hill grade will allow you to extend the duration of ‘good’ running form.

    We often introduce running to non-runners or runners recovering from injury with what we call run/walk progressions. Run a bit and walk a bit. As both fitness and form improve the run segments become longer and the walk segments become shorter.

    Intensity is not something you need right now. However, your son comes first so I’d say that doing one 5km faster run a week is worth it.

    Always do intensity before aerobic base work if in the same workout.

    Good luck,

    Matt on #34384

    Thanks Scott, that’s so helpful.

    I’ll wait a week and then try again at 145.

    I’ll do some work on running form, limiting it to short spells to keep HR in check. Until I can get the form improved I don’t think I can make a realistic assessment re ADS.

    Really appreciate the input.

    Kind regards,


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