I had heard and read alot about Maffetone training, and wanted to give it a go. It may be an effective method for me and my athletes. So as its the 'off season' now is a better time than any.
This was the protocol:
Run for 1km warm up nice and easy, slowly raising HR to 135bpm, then run for 5k maintaining HR at 135bpm.
The aim is that over time, I would be able to run at the same HR but at a quicker pace, thereby increasing my aerobic capacity and allowing me to race faster.
I chose a flat oval on grass for this. Flat: because it will allow consistent HR, and grass: because it will be easier on the calves and joints whilst running at that slower pace with greater ground contact time.
Week 1 I had to walk almost every 250m for a few seconds to get the HR down from 138-140 back to 135.
I ran at almost 3 minutes per Km slower than race pace. These were the paces:
total time 36:37
avg cadence 155
Yes this felt easy, but my average cadence was 155, avg stride length 0.89, average ground contact time was around 270.
Right now I fail to see how this slow pace can help my race pace - different running style completely.
No walking at all today and I tried to focus on quicker cadence and lifting legs up a little bit more - i.e. technique rather than plod
total time 36:59
average cadence throughout was 166
So on the plus side, the cadence was quicker, and form was improved. Also there was no walking for the same 136bpm HR.
quicker this time 6:34 6:47 6:50 6:47 6:39 Avg HR elevated toward the last km to 137 but avg overall still 134
cadence 172, also quicker, overall time for 5k 33:38
6.41 7.01 7.03 6.58 6.50
total time 34:33 Avg HR 136 avg cadence 167 - also slower than last week. Note to self..... increase cadence!
This run was done later in the day than the previous week, warmer (22'c compared to 17'C last week and and 19'C the week before), also very windy. possible reasons for slower paces...