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So what is Easy ?

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  • 26-02-2019 2:11am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 5,136 ✭✭✭


    What is Easy running?
    - A message that a lot of people find hard to grasp especially when the novice thread starts up is what easy really is.

    So to illustrate this point I am going to list PBs and training paces that I train at.
    If you could add your own also I would appreciate it in illustrating the point.

    PS I think I train too fast too on my easy runs.

    Name|5k|5M|10k|10M|1/2|Mar|HRmax|Easy pace|Recovery pace

    rom |17:42|29:45|37:12|1:02:18|1:25:03|2:54:21|194|~7:45 @ 145HR|~8:15 @ 138HR



Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 901 ✭✭✭EL_Loco


    well from my couch potato spot here I'd have a hard time getting close to your "easy run". But I do see it's quite a bit slower than your PB paces.

    Is that the point you're trying to make, between a competitive run and an easy training one? Is that what the novices are missing? you don't have to go for broke on every session?


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,438 ✭✭✭✭Murph_D


    Name|5k|5M|10k|10M|1/2|Mar|HRmax|Easy pace|Recovery pace

    rom |17:42|29:45|37:12|1:02:18|1:25:03|2:54:21|194|~7:45 @ 145HR|~8:15 @ 138HR
    Murph_D|19:47|33:23|43:19|1:11:33|1:34:17|3:22:11|196|~9:00@ 148HR|~9:45 @ 140HR



    HR data probably not too accurate due to regular equipment failure!

    Question for rom - if you know it’s probably too fast, why not adjust?


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,340 ✭✭✭TFBubendorfer


    Why do you think your pace is too fast? Your easy pace at least seems reasonable enough to me.

    Rule of thumb for easy pace is that you can talk in whole sentences while running.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,016 ✭✭✭Itziger


    Name|5k|5M|10k|10M|1/2|Mar|HRmax|Easy pace|Recovery pace

    rom |17:42|29:45|37:12|1:02:18|1:25:03|2:54:21|194|~7:45 @ 145HR|~8:15 @ 138HR
    Murph_D|19:47|33:23|43:19|1:11:33|1:34:17|3:22:11|196|9:00@ 148HR|~9:45 @ 140HR
    Itziger|17:50|29:52|36:48|x:xx:xx|1:21:05|2:59:10|180|7:50|8:10


    To be fair, there's a bit of guesswork there on HR for example. And a bit of moving around on the paces as well as having to convert to miles. Most of my running is easy and right now that's about 4.50 per km. Half is 3:50km pace and target M is between 4.05 and 4.10 all in mins/km obviously.

    I still see some people, not many, doing very fast paces for almost all their training. Don't know how they don't pick up more injuries.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,016 ✭✭✭Itziger


    EL_Loco wrote: »
    well from my couch potato spot here I'd have a hard time getting close to your "easy run". But I do see it's quite a bit slower than your PB paces.

    Is that the point you're trying to make, between a competitive run and an easy training one? Is that what the novices are missing? you don't have to go for broke on every session?

    I think one of the big differences is that novices aren't running as often or as far as more competitive runners so they are able to do 3 mile runs near their 5k PB regularly. But that is not great training as has been discussed a lot here recently across two or three threads. If you're doing a 30k run on Sunday with Marathon pace thrown in then your Monday run is going to be fairly slow............


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  • Registered Users Posts: 8,080 ✭✭✭BeepBeep67


    Don't get caught up on the paces of your easy and recovery runs, listen to your body and how you feel.
    An easy run should feel comfortable and when you stop you should feel like you could keep going for the same distance again.
    After a recovery run you should feel better than when you started.
    My recovery paces fluctuate between 7:45 and 8:45, sometimes improving or slowing in the same run.

    Change your watch screen to time of day and tune into your body and surroundings.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,606 ✭✭✭ultrapercy


    rom wrote: »
    What is Easy running?
    - A message that a lot of people find hard to grasp especially when the novice thread starts up is what easy really is.

    So to illustrate this point I am going to list PBs and training paces that I train at.
    If you could add your own also I would appreciate it in illustrating the point.

    PS I think I train too fast too on my easy runs.

    Name|5k|5M|10k|10M|1/2|Mar|HRmax|Easy pace|Recovery pace

    rom |17:42|29:45|37:12|1:02:18|1:25:03|2:54:21|194|~7:45 @ 145HR|~8:15 @ 138HR


    The only way to gauge intensity is with a heart rate monitor. Easy pace can change depending on weather, terrain, fatigue levels etc. Basing easy pace off 5k pace plus 90 secs or 2 mins is very inaccurate. If you use a heart rate monitor and gauge it off % of max hr you bypass the guess work.
    I just saw your max hr now. I would say you easy pace is 70 to 75% so 136 to 145 roughly.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,582 ✭✭✭Swashbuckler


    I'd agree completely with everything BeepBeep said. Easy is a feeling not a pace. No point trying to squeeze a square peg into a round hole. If your body is asking you to run slower but you are running to a prescribed easy pace then it's no longer easy.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,376 ✭✭✭diego_b


    Easy pace for me seems to vary for the type of training I am doing. Short faster races versus marathon training and the volume/effort required for each.
    For instance at the moment I am training for 5Ks mainly running around 6 days a week (plenty of short easy 40-45 min runs) with 1-2 sessions a week (one being a parkrun) on around 30 miles a week. Easy pace is around 5:40K/9:09min/mi whereas this time last year I was after going through training for Donadea 50K where I was running 5-6 days a week (50-55 miles per week)...easy pace then was probably closer to 9:30min/mi or so. It's based on feeling and keeping an eye on the hr as well. Pretty sure when I go back to marathon training the pace will ease off more for the same effort.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,136 ✭✭✭rom


    ultrapercy wrote: »
    The only way to gauge intensity is with a heart rate monitor. Easy pace can change depending on weather, terrain, fatigue levels etc. Basing easy pace off 5k pace plus 90 secs or 2 mins is very inaccurate. If you use a heart rate monitor and gauge it off % of max hr you bypass the guess work.
    I just saw your max hr now. I would say you easy pace is 70 to 75% so 136 to 145 roughly.

    I was running most of my runs at prob 144 to 148 hr so think dialing it back a bit.


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  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 20,364 Mod ✭✭✭✭RacoonQueen


    BeepBeep67 wrote: »
    Change your watch screen to time of day and tune into your body and surroundings.

    Yep this is what I do for easy / recovery. I have a screen on my watch face that has time of day and HR on it. Having HR there allows me to keep myself honest if I am being bold when I'm meant to be running easy.

    edit: I would have my easy pace HR at max 140 so I would keep an eye on that (when I have battery in my HRM)

    I don't think there is any such thing as 'too easy' - when I used to do lunch runs with people from work I'd often be down at 120ish bpm and still felt it was a worthwhile few miles.


  • Registered Users Posts: 946 ✭✭✭KSU


    Heart Rate probably isn't the greatest measurement

    You can run slower and increase your HR, likewise you can run faster and have it "easier". How hard you body is working is also influenced how you run, poor stride makes for more work for less return. Your effort can be influenced by being lazy with your form or being distracted (unless you have gotten to an unconscious level of expertise) This is why the loping stride of many elites looks effortless, its because it is they are focusing on minimal effort.

    Easy is just that it is making it feel as easy as possible while getting aerobic benefits. Duration of run, how frequently you run, whether you do regular workouts, how hard those workouts are all dictate


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,849 ✭✭✭✭average_runner


    Name|5k|5M|10k|10M|1/2|Mar|HRmax|Easy pace|Recovery pace

    rom |17:42|29:45|37:12|1:02:18|1:25:03|2:54:21|194|~7:45 @ 145HR|~8:15 @ 138HR
    Murph_D|19:47|33:23|43:19|1:11:33|1:34:17|3:22:11|196|~9:00@ 148HR|~9:45 @ 140HR
    Average_Runner|19:38|33:00|42:07|1:13:10|1:39:27|3:41:11|183|~8:47@ 144HR|~9:01 @ 142HR - 138 ish


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,438 ✭✭✭✭Murph_D


    Name|5k|5M|10k|10M|1/2|Mar|HRmax|Easy pace|Recovery pace

    rom |17:42|29:45|37:12|1:02:18|1:25:03|2:54:21|194|~7:45 @ 145HR|~8:15 @ 138HR
    Murph_D|19:47|33:23|43:19|1:11:33|1:34:17|3:22:11|196|~9:00@ 148HR|~9:45 @ 140HR
    Itziger|17:50|29:52|36:48|x:xx:xx|1:21:05|2:59:10|180|7:50|8:10
    Average_Runner|19:38|33:00|42:07|1:13:10|1:39:27|3:41:11|183|~8:47@ 144HR|~9:01 @ 142HR - 138 ish


    Putting Itziger back in, and fancying up a bit. Is there a pattern emerging? :)


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 354 ✭✭El CabaIIo


    Name|5k|5M|10k|10M|1/2|Mar|HRmax|Easy pace|Recovery pace

    rom |17:42|29:45|37:12|1:02:18|1:25:03|2:54:21|194|~7:45 @ 145HR|~8:15 @ 138HR
    Murph_D|19:47|33:23|43:19|1:11:33|1:34:17|3:22:11|196|~9:00@ 148HR|~9:45 @ 140HR
    Itziger|17:50|29:52|36:48|x:xx:xx|1:21:05|2:59:10|180|7:50|8:10
    Average_Runner|19:38|33:00|42:07|1:13:10|1:39:27|3:41:11|183|~8:47@ 144HR|~9:01 @ 142HR - 138 ish
    Eliud Kipchoge|12:46|n/a|26:49|n/a|59:25|2:01:39|n/a|~6:40|~8:00


    I mostly agree with BeepBeep but thought I'd put this in for the hell of it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,834 ✭✭✭OOnegative


    El CabaIIo wrote: »
    Name|5k|5M|10k|10M|1/2|Mar|HRmax|Easy pace|Recovery pace

    rom |17:42|29:45|37:12|1:02:18|1:25:03|2:54:21|194|~7:45 @ 145HR|~8:15 @ 138HR
    Murph_D|19:47|33:23|43:19|1:11:33|1:34:17|3:22:11|196|~9:00@ 148HR|~9:45 @ 140HR
    Itziger|17:50|29:52|36:48|x:xx:xx|1:21:05|2:59:10|180|7:50|8:10
    Average_Runner|19:38|33:00|42:07|1:13:10|1:39:27|3:41:11|183|~8:47@ 144HR|~9:01 @ 142HR - 138 ish
    Eliud Kipchoge|12:46|n/a|26:49|n/a|59:25|2:01:39|n/a|~6:40|~8:00


    I mostly agree with BeepBeep but thought I'd put this in for the hell of it.

    Big believer in BeepBeep67’s theory to, recently got a Garmin 735xt as a present and first GPS watch that had built in wirst HR. Watch reckons 8.30 pace is Threshold pace, not at the minute!! I know at this stage what’s easy and what’s not by feel.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,606 ✭✭✭ultrapercy


    KSU wrote: »
    Heart Rate probably isn't the greatest measurement

    You can run slower and increase your HR, likewise you can run faster and have it "easier". How hard you body is working is also influenced how you run, poor stride makes for more work for less return. Your effort can be influenced by being lazy with your form or being distracted (unless you have gotten to an unconscious level of expertise) This is why the loping stride of many elites looks effortless, its because it is they are focusing on minimal effort.

    Easy is just that it is making it feel as easy as possible while getting aerobic benefits. Duration of run, how frequently you run, whether you do regular workouts, how hard those workouts are all dictate

    Your theory on heart rate is nonsensical. Heart Rate is by far the most accurate guide of running intensity. Like the rev counter in a car it tells you exactly how hard your heart is working. Everything else is guess work, some guesses being closer than others.


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,530 ✭✭✭✭28064212


    ultrapercy wrote: »
    Like the rev counter in a car it tells you exactly how hard your heart is working.
    And like the rev counter in your car, it only tells you how hard your heart is working. The tachometer in a given car at, say, 120km, will always be the same. But you could have a full passenger and luggage load, into a strong headwind, or an empty car with a tailwind, so the work done isn't the same. Similarly, you could do two runs at exactly the same HR, but significantly different effort involved, depending on a myriad of internal and external factors

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,983 ✭✭✭Duanington


    Its been said already but easy is easy...if it feels easy, then it is....if it doesn't.....


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,227 ✭✭✭Wottle


    My own experience with easy pace started in 2012 when I read the HAAD pdf, his training is very HR specific.
    I purposely ran no quicker than 75% of max HR. The problem was after these so called easy runs I wasn't feeling great or that I could go again. I put this down to the fact that I wasn't used to running easy and was therefore shuffling. So I concentrated on small steps and quick arms (cadence) and this changed everything, felt light on my feet, started enjoying easy runs and always felt I could do a lot more after.

    Fast forward to now and my easy runs are being run between 8 and 10:30 miling (recently ran sub 20), depends on the group I'm running with but my cadence always remain high now, so like RQ, I couldn't care less what the pace is and I wear my HR monitor less and less but when I do wear it I stick to less than 75% of max and keep cadence high (I no longer have to concentrate on cadence, it just happens)


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  • Registered Users Posts: 61 ✭✭TheJak01


    28064212 wrote: »
    And like the rev counter in your car, it only tells you how hard your heart is working. The tachometer in a given car at, say, 120km, will always be the same. But you could have a full passenger and luggage load, into a strong headwind, or an empty car with a tailwind, so the work done isn't the same. Similarly, you could do two runs at exactly the same HR, but significantly different effort involved, depending on a myriad of internal and external factors

    It's not really like a car tachometer though. If you are fatigued, if you are running into a headwind, if you're going up hill your heart rate will increase if running the same pace. Running is very steady state, and thus your internal load (heart rate) is a within a few bpm the best indicator of effort you can have. If you're not feeling it on a day, you can bet your heart rate will be higher than on a day where you're chomping at the bit. 6min/km will see massively different heart rates depending on the conditions.

    There are plenty of situations where heart rate is far from a perfect measure, such as in field sports, or if running short intervals, and there are different ways of capturing that (if you've ever seen the sports bras rugby/football players wear, that's what those are doing). However, for a steady state run those are far too consistent regardless of effort level to capture any meaningful variation.

    Of course, if you're heart rate monitor is telling you one thing, and you're feeling another then slow down your running. However, that'll tend to be a perception of effort, and a purely psychological, thing rather than your body having to work any harder. Loads of people will find that in a race they can hold a pace easily but struggle to do the same on a training run. That isn't due to there being an extra load on a runner or difficulty for a runner, it's because in the heat of the race a runner tends to be more motivated to hold a certain speed.

    What is correct though is not to take your heart rate as gospel, especially the zones you're given for easy running. You will have small variances in heart rate daily, and thus I would calibrate what I'm looking for. I'd go out without looking at my watch maybe 10 times and see what sort of heart rate I am running on an easy pace by feel, and then use that to set a range of what I want my heart rate to be in. People do vary in what they can sustain, so taking 70-75% of max heart rate for an easy run might not be right for you. It could be 60%, or 75-80% for others. It is a good way to keep yourself honest, especially for the "hard" runs where your pace has been down but your effort has still been what's required.


  • Registered Users Posts: 90 ✭✭RunnerDub


    As as runner in my mid 50s my max heart rate is 166 - 170. I wear a HR strap when training. 75% of my max is 127 approx. I find it impossible to get near this, I ran a 14k really slow run Sunday with a HR avg of 133, Not that far off 127


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 354 ✭✭El CabaIIo


    RunnerDub wrote: »
    As as runner in my mid 50s my max heart rate is 166 - 170. I wear a HR strap when training. 75% of my max is 127 approx. I find it impossible to get near this, I ran a 14k really slow run Sunday with a HR avg of 133, Not that far off 127

    It's possible your HR max is much higher than that. The 220 minus your age formula is very innacurate for the general population and even the guy who invented it says he got stretched and taken out of context as it was something they found in middle aged people who had heart disease.

    A mate of mine has a lab tested HR max of 168 and is 28, some people have much highe maxes than the formula.

    The only way outside of a lab to get an accurate Max is to do a high intensity test. Something like this

    3x800m w/2 min recovery and do a 4th rep at the same intensity for 2 minutes and the let fly as hard as you can run in a sprint until you need to stop and check your HR and it should be close to your real max.


  • Registered Users Posts: 90 ✭✭RunnerDub


    El CabaIIo wrote: »
    It's possible your HR max is much higher than that. The 220 minus your age formula is very innacurate for the general population and even the guy who invented it says he got stretched and taken out of context as it was something they found in middle aged people who had heart disease.

    A mate of mine has a lab tested HR max of 168 and is 28, some people have much highe maxes than the formula.

    The only way outside of a lab to get an accurate Max is to do a high intensity test. Something like this

    3x800m w/2 min recovery and do a 4th rep at the same intensity for 2 minutes and the let fly as hard as you can run in a sprint until you need to stop and check your HR and it should be close to your real max.

    Thanks El CabaIIo

    I will give it a bash over the next few days.


  • Users Awaiting Email Confirmation Posts: 1,105 ✭✭✭Limpy


    I think when your form is right you can run any pace. I see people slowing down to keep an "easy pace" and end up shuffling.


  • Registered Users Posts: 946 ✭✭✭KSU


    ultrapercy wrote: »
    Your theory on heart rate is nonsensical. Heart Rate is by far the most accurate guide of running intensity. Like the rev counter in a car it tells you exactly how hard your heart is working. Everything else is guess work, some guesses being closer than others.

    Except for the fact that time of day (Max HR will be lower early morning and late night so when you tested you max will also matter though often not taken into account) , glycogen depletion and a myriad of other factors influence your Max HR at any given time)

    Others have alluded to the point I was trying to make (reading back I think it may come across that I was referring to manipulating HR through how you run specific to that run). HR is a measure of intensity but form can influence how hard the heart has to work to maintain a particular pace, muscle energy return (ala plyometric properties) and other factors can make the effort required decrease or increase independent of pace which is what I meant about the HR being increased with poor form (i.e shuffling can illicit harder effort at slower paces than good form)


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 354 ✭✭El CabaIIo


    KSU wrote: »
    Except for the fact that time of day (Max HR will be lower early morning and late night so when you tested you max will also matter though often not taken into account) , glycogen depletion and a myriad of other factors influence your Max HR at any given time)

    Others have alluded to the point I was trying to make (reading back I think it may come across that I was referring to manipulating HR through how you run specific to that run). HR is a measure of intensity but form can influence how hard the heart has to work to maintain a particular pace, muscle energy return (ala plyometric properties) and other factors can make the effort required decrease or increase independent of pace which is what I meant about the HR being increased with poor form (i.e shuffling can illicit harder effort at slower paces than good form)

    Would agree with you that economy obviously improves the ease at which you can run paces across the board. But I'm not sure what that has to do with heartrate been an innacurate measure of effort. If you improve LT or aerobic capacity, the same thing is true.

    Effort is effort, if you improve your form, the effort doesn't change, you just run a bit faster. If you improve LT, effort doesn't change, you just run faster. If you improve aerobic capacity...etc etc.

    None of them take away from the accuracy of heartrate. I'm struggling to understand the issue a lot of people here have with heartrate. If you are using technology, HR is by far the most accurate measure and 100 times better than pace ranges. Sure there are varibles that HR doesn't perfectly get right but it does include 100 times more varibles than pace. Pace and distance are man made creations, intensity and time are the only things your body understands.

    I feel like this is the same kind of debate as BMI where everyone points out outliers that don't adhere to the system and ignore that it is a really good measure 99% of the time.

    HR is a good measure of effort and although not perfect, is alot more accurate than any other measures out there for those who use technology to try and get intensity right.


  • Registered Users Posts: 946 ✭✭✭KSU


    El CabaIIo wrote: »
    None of them take away from the accuracy of heartrate. I'm struggling to understand the issue a lot of people here have with heartrate. If you are using technology, HR is by far the most accurate measure and 100 times better than pace ranges. Sure there are varibles that HR doesn't perfectly get right but it does include 100 times more varibles than pace. Pace and distance are man made creations, intensity and time are the only things your body understands.

    Accuracy of HR might be an okay measurement but the number of if's you have to clarify which get ignored make it as much guesswork

    - Was the Max HR tested in a lab or using a timetrial style test? This affects accuracy
    - What time of the day did you do this test? This affects accuracy
    - Did you have sufficient glycogen? This affects accuracy
    - Hydration? This affects accuracy
    - Cortisol levels? This affects accuracy
    - Sleep? (tied to the last) This affects accuracy

    And this is just on the day of testing how many of them factors are controlled to ensure accuracy.

    El CabaIIo wrote: »
    HR is a good measure of effort and although not perfect, is alot more accurate than any other measures out there for those who use technology to try and get intensity right.

    Maybe this is the issue. People trying to quantify and explain something that should be subjective and learnt properly (much like many elements of running)

    People need to stop trying to explain why something works and actually learn the hows of it working (i.e intrinsic intuition)


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 354 ✭✭El CabaIIo


    KSU wrote: »
    Maybe this is the issue. People trying to quantify and explain something that should be subjective and learnt properly (much like many elements of running)

    People need to stop trying to explain why something works and actually learn the hows of it working (i.e intrinsic intuition)

    I agree but that's a pain in the ass as well:pac: because if someone doesn't know what effort easy or LT or whatever is, they never learn because their perception of an easy run might be marathon pace.

    The only way that might learn is from going out running with people who are clued in and seeing the effort but that's not usually an option for beginners and many runners in groups are just pissing contests. I'm not throwing myself out as some sort of know it all and doing things to perfection(I'm far from that) but I first found out about having slower easy days from reading, done it that way for a while and then strapped on a HR monitor out of interest after reading HADD and hearing about Marcus O'Sullivan and that was when I found out just how easy easy was supposed to feel from the feedback on the HR monitor which opened the door to me being able to run watchless in races and all my runs.

    The very minute I put my watch display back on even now though, it still turns into a pissing contest but all that info helped me get to a point where I think I've got a good intuitive feel for paces and efforts in training. If I never had that knowledge base and experience base, I'd be none the wiser right now.


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