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Aerobic Base

  • 31-12-2021 7:01pm
    Moderators, Category Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 17,723 CMod ✭✭✭✭ The Black Oil

    A term that's hard to miss if you read up on running. Plenty of articles about it. I've never heard it mentioned at club training, however I'm relative n00b there. Foundational or laying the groundwork is what comes to mind when I hear about it, along with a sense of confidence (hopefully).

    It was really this video a few weeks ago that led me to post this, including the point about drop in marathon times as you go up to 60 miles per week. I've only done that in the meno plan. I'm not making changes based on the video or dipping into calculators, but I wanted to kick off a thread for the new boards. To pick up on his point about people being aerobically under-developed - aside from what he's summarised, what's this, exactly? And what you think of when it comes to aerobic base?


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,580 ✭✭✭ Swashbuckler

    I don't know know if I can add much to the few excellent posts already.

    From my own perspective I used to have the viewpoint similar to what has been mentioned already. All about easy miles and high mileage. The more miles the better.

    In my own training I've seen a huge aerobic benefit from running miles between marathon pace and easy pace. Probably historically these have been called junk miles depending who you're speaking with. Some of the runs ecoli listed out are bang on in terms of aerobic vase building. The sub threshold runs in particular are excellent. Tempo runs at MP and slower.

    I think often aerobic building is forgotten about or under appreciated. People always fancy those tasty sessions. Someone with a big aerobic engine will win out against a session machine for me any day.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,169 ✭✭✭ demfad

    What does an aerobically fit runner do?

    Indication might be your ability to run for at least 90 mins @ high end aerobic pace, where your internal effort and external indicators don't diverge. ie run feels equally comfortable all the way through with no drop in pace. If you use technology, the internal effort could be gauged by HR (accepting that this should drift slightly over the run) and the external effort by pace or a power meter.

    To get there for a new runner the Lydiard method is initially very apt. It has times as well as distances for the runs. Times more suitable for us. Initially all aerobic runs are easy till you reach your volume goal in time. Easy would mean the easiest you can run with decent technique (for you). At the same time you need to develop a base of speed (for strenght, technique and to get your nerves twitching all your muscle in prep to be trained later). Hill sprints are well known for this reason but for a new runner it may be best to do these on the flat incorporating relaxed strides. New runners have huge gains to make in relaxed technique which is best developed on the flat IMO.

    Then you would start increasing the paces of some of the runs. You might do one run (or 2 if high volume) at aerobic threshold which would be the 75-80% HRR mentioned by Murph. I would start at a half hour and work up. Note there should be a 15-20 min warmup for this run not including the quality portion. Maybe do a couple of weeks at the hour, and then get into a 40,50,60 min rotation at a slightly faster pace. As you get accustomed to this you could up another couple of runs a gear while leaving a few at the easier pace.

    You could keep improving like this. Throw in TTs @ 10k. 10m, HM controlled and even paced. If you are progressing well and want to continue then do a race a month starting controlled. Throw in a block of fartlek totaling around 40 mins work and you will be in fine fetal to then spend a block specifically focusing on your particular event.

    That's the general idea in my opinion, throw in hills or modify to suit. etc. and the second third time around try and get a higher proportion at the faster paces.

    Lastly an overall reasoning for high volume. There is a relationship between volume and intensity.

    A 40m PB 10k runner can run a 43 min 10k in a hard training run. If he were to add 2k to this run every two weeks then after 10k weeks he can run 20k in 86 mins in a training run. If he were to do his 10k run again he can now do it in 41m. If he/she were to rest up and enter a 10k race, the PB will likely come down. Now to be able to increase from 10k up to 20k like he did he would already have needed to be able to run long at a faster aerobic pace as a base for that 10k run which increases to 20k. That's the aerobic endurance developed in the base. The aerobic endurance was based on those high end runs that occurred during high volume weeks. That training was possible because of the big volume of easy running slowly built up. That is one instance to demonstrate how larger volumes translate to intensity/faster times.