Running easy to racing

  • Creator
  • #23728

    I have a 100-miler coming up this fall with a decent amount of vert. It’s not my first 100, but it’s the first that I’m trying to do so much training easy (Z1/2) to increase my aerobic base. I’ve seen a little progress but still I have to really watch myself because if I get distracted and just run “normal” I will for sure end up in zone 3. It doesn’t feel bad at all – it’s where I’ve been running most of my life.

    So what happens on race day? Do I force myself to sit back in Z2? Do I just hope the training worked the best it can and run by feel (inevitably running in Z3)?

Posted In: Mountain Running

  • Participant
    doughywilson on #23741

    I’m no 100 mile veteran, but I have studied aerobic vs anaerobic training a lot. The more you stay in Zone 2 during your race, the less glycogen you will burn, the more fat you will burn instead, and you’ll be feeling good for a long time. Only There is much less lactic acid being produced when you stay aerobic, and you’ll be tapping into the big energy of your fat storage. If you train your aerobic capacity and build it up before the fall, you will likely be able to run pretty fast without going too far into Zone 3, but I guess that depends on how aerobically deficient you are.

    I know some people who have done very well in 100 milers, and after seeing their data, they stayed in Z2, with only a few occasions going into Z3.

    Anonymous on #23752


    With a high aerobic threshold you’ll be predominately in Z2 during a 100 mile race unless really pushing it on some bigger climbs. You can’t afford to spend too much time in Z3 in a 100 mile race and still have a good race. It’s just be too demanding. This is why we emphasize the need for long distance runners to elevate that AeT pace and HR as high as possible. Then they are using mostly fat for fuel and they are relaying much more on the better endurance adapted Slo Twitch muscle fibers. From the sounds of it you have some aerobic deficiency that may take months to correct. If you race is soon then you will probably have to restrain yourself in the early stages so that you can still finish strong.


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