Example of early Base Period week (Distance-Vertical-Time))

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  • #28443


    I’m runner preparing for Mountain-Trail races. I’m starting my base period this coming week and i’m trying to schedule the first week based on the 13.1 figure example on page 347 and the 11.7 figure Macrocycle plan on page 291.

    I’m trying to figure how to calculate vertical % on the days of the week. And whether to follow a distance based program or go with elevation. On the figure 13.1 it mentions elevation on most days. However on the Macrocycle figure the weeks are measured in distance.

    Also on the weekly program it also has weekly time. Plus there is warm up for hill sprints and there is the warm up for the ME workout. So that would mean more distance, time and maybe elevation; I’m aware that on page 294 “Aerobic base workouts” it mentions for your long workout to be between 30-40% of your weekly distance/vertical and distribute the remaining distance over at least four workouts.

    So if a follow the figure 13.1 and base the vertical % there. Say as an example i start with 2000m of total vertical for week 1.

    Day2 15% 300m+
    day3 15% 300m+

    day4 AM time?? PM approx. 15min warm up for ME workout (will ME include a cool down?)

    day5 Hill sprints, Time: 20min warm up, 20min cool down= 40min. Elevation-Distance??
    day6 15% 300m+ + PM optional 5% = 100m+
    day7 40% 800m+

    So say if you sum up the vertical it adds up to 1800m+ including the optional PM recovery on day6. That leaves 200m+. So does this imply that the remaining vertical meters are going to be covered by the Day4 am z1 session, the ME workout on day 4 and the hill sprints on day 5?
    What if you choose an outdoor ME based workout wouldn’t that mean more vertical m+?

    How can i calculate the 15% weekly time mentioned on Day4? Should there be total % of time for the week like in the transition period? Because there is also going to be more time on feet by doing the warm ups and cool downs of the workouts.

    Also how will distance play in all this? Because my concern is that depending on the routes i choose like mountains or trails with higher elevation changes, the distance will not increase allot and vice versa.

    I hope somebody can lear these things out for me because i’m getting a head ache in trying and making up a plan 🙂 Thanks in advance.

    Kind Regards

Posted In: Mountain Running

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    Anonymous on #28526

    Good question. Sorry for the confusion.

    For volume, all training volume counts. The exceptions would be recovery activities (yoga, pilates, massage, etc). But warm-ups, cool-downs, descents, etc all count toward total training time, distance, and gain. How does that change the time, distance, and gain components of your question?

    We get this question a lot, and I think it’s a case of false precision. The numbers don’t have to match up exactly. If you end up with 10% less distance and 10% more volume, I think the training stimulus will be similar enough.

    Scott J. is traveling right now, but I’ll ask him to weigh in when he can.

    Anonymous on #28609

    Scott S is correct that you can get carried away with trying to be too precise with these numbers.

    Let’s talk about how to count your training volume:

    1) Distance: This is the traditional method for runners. It works great for road runners but is not so useful for mountain runners due to the vertical gain and loss. In the end though, if your event is a 100km race you do need to be able to cover 100km. So, distance must be considered in the calculation of training volume.

    2) Vertical: For the mountain runner this metric takes on almost as much importance as distance. That’s because this is the stuff (both up and down) that can really take a toll on your legs.

    3) Time: So, this brings us to the more universal training volume metric for mountain athletes. It is universal because you can run farther and faster in an hour on a flatter run or you can run less far on a steep hilly run in an hour. But we can say that the training load of these 2 different types of hours are roughly equivalent. By this I do not mean they will have the same value: If you are training for a steep and very hilly event then the flat run will have less value in terms of preparation for your event.

    From this I hope you can see that we mountain athletes do not have it as easy as a road runner where distance is a nice simple metric for training load. In our case there is no ONE metric we can use. What we do with our UA coached athletes and I do with my own training is to keep track of all 3: Distance, Vertical and Time. Then I “try” to plan these using the rough rules laid out in the book that mention. We prioritize the one of the metrics that makes the most sense for the event and the athlete. If your goal event entails an amount of vertical that is going to be a stretch for you then you should prioritize using Vertical as your metric. If your event is going to push you distance wise then you should prioritize using distance as your metric. I would not recommend choosing an event that will be a big challenge in both distance and vertical unless you have a lot of experience at this type of thing.

    I’m sorry I can’t be more detailed in these answers.

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