Ha-ha, I resemble that remark. Nevertheless, my philosophy of 'Just do it' did get me into the world rankings over three different distances. Funny that!I think the article is only relevant if the 'it' that you want to 'just do' is beyond you due to age related decline. .
This is my case, although I did 16:32 for a 5000m some forty years ago which would now put me up the front of the local park run my current best of 50:04 is almost 10 mins slower than the faster MV60's. It would cetainly help me if I could get away from spending so much time training by doing more effective training as I have other hobbies and interests.I think the article is only relevant if the 'it' that you want to 'just do' is beyond you due to age related decline.
If your goals match your physical condition then it's not relevant.
When I got back into running some three years ago I used to train in the lunch break at work for only 25 mins three time a week. The first 10 mins of the session was just a steady warm up for the next 10 mins which was a gradually increasing pace with the last 5 mins hard. All running was done over hilly heathland. It was enought to get get me 57 mins for my first 10k.It's and interesting article and this bit:
"As we age there is a tendency to increase duration at the expense of intensity. Workouts become longer and easier. The aging athlete needs to do just the opposite if he or she is to slow the aging process."
is definitely true for me, but part of the reason for this is that I have found by reducing intensity I can do more running, as I find longer slower runs take much less time to recover from than shorter faster ones.
It all depends what you want I suppose; to me its much more important to enjoy running and, within reason, to be able to do as much of it as possible, without worrying too much about how quickly (or not) I am going, or becoming over tired/injured as a result of pushing myself too much (been there, done that!)
Admittedly I do have a tendency to plod along at a very slow pace if I'm not careful, and I'm not saying I have no interest at all in ways to get quicker - I do do some speedwork (honestly ) its just that I don't seem to be able to 'bounce back' from it as quickly as I used to so inevitably the amount of it that I do now, compared to say 10 years ago, has reduced.
I think for the author to say 'The ageing athelete needs to do just the opposite' is maybe oversimplifying things a little.
All just my opinion (albeit based on experience) of course.
With me it was more a case of my body not being able to cope with with old demands, let alone get used to doing any new ones. :lol:I expect it's a matter of 'just doing the opposite' very gradually? Your body needs a chance to get used to the new demands. But ultimately what counts is what you enjoy. There's nothing wrong with going longer and slower as you age if you're doing it because you enjoy it! The key thing is that research shows that it doesn't NEED to be that way - which is good to know for those of us that enjoy the challenge of trying to get faster no matter how old we get.
My sentiments entirely, as you'll gather from my Blog, but I also enjoy running fast - if you can call it that nowadays! Today, during a 7 mile run, I stuck in 15 x approx 200m intervals just for the joy of it and that exhilerating feeling of speed. The first ones were at 6.43 pace but gradually speeded up to 5.45 pace.Ultimately what counts is what you enjoy. There's nothing wrong with going longer and slower as you age if you're doing it because you enjoy it!
That's describes my experience so perfectly its a little uncanny!Say for example you did 2 speed sessions and 3 longer, slower runs in your 20's and 30's. By 40 you're starting to struggle to recover from the speed sessions due to loss of fast twitch muscle fibers etc. So you cut a speed session and do OK for a while - but your fast twitch fibers are atrophying at a much faster rate now. 10 years later you need to cut another speed session. Now you're doing nothing to negate the effects of aging. You'll go downhill fast and if you try to re-introduce your speed sessions you'll struggle as you don't have the muscle anymore. Although it's never too late - the more you've allowed your muscles to atrophy the slower you'll need to build this kind of training back in.
Where were you 15 years ago! :dIf however when you'd first started to struggle you'd cut a long run instead and kept the speed sessions going you'd be in better shape today (in theory!).
The thing is though, faced with the choice of cutting out something that it takes you longer to recover from and you don't enjoy that much (in my, and I would think many other peoples cases, higher intensity runs) as opposed to the type of running that you love and doesn't seem to tax you so much physically (longer slower ones) what are most people going to do? From an enjoyement point of view its a no brainer. I guess it just comes back to whats more important to you.*Maybe* (just a thought) the answer is to cut back on mileage in order to do the higher intensity sessions? As you age you loose fast twitch muscle fibers and gain more slow twitch. Older athletes actually get better at endurance than youngsters. You need to do specific training to hold onto fast twitch fiber strength. Your percentage of slow twitch fibers will increase whether you train or not. So, for performance purposes I think this is why you're advised to cut back on mileage in order to cope with more high intensity training.
That's kind of what I've been doing.Now I'm sure that's partly genetic - we'll all select the type of exercise we're best suited to. But also I think it's a case of being good at what you practice. You've been running long distances for a long time and that will have built up lots of fitness allowing you to work hard in speed sessions. But because you haven't been practicing speed sessions you've got lots of weak links in the chain. This leads to injury and slow recovery. So my guess would be that the answer is to be very patient and go back to basics with the speed work. Start out doing less than you're capable so that the weakest links get a chance to catch up?
Interesting idea - I'm not sure I'd see a sprint as a 'reward' though! :d. Seriously though, I'm all for a bit of experimentation so I'll give it a try. The only thing I can think of against it is that it would interrupt the rhythm of a long slow run too much - for me they are just about switching off (I don't get bored) and chugging along at an easyish pace without thinking about anything too much but I'll give it a go on my next one and see how it feels.Another thing that I do (because I get bored on long runs) is to reward myself with a little sprint every kilometer/mile/ten minutes etc. What would happen if you cut a mile or two off of a couple of runs and put some little short, sharp burst in? 30 seconds I think would produce results and start to build up the body for speed without you feeling you're cutting out a long run
I was doing these on a short hill near home but used some real hills which is a 15 mile drive away but its out in the country so its a pleasent session. found they helped alot in last years hilly half marathon.OldBoy, a couple of things that I'm experimenting with:
These are always done at the club after a warm up before interval sessions. I suppose I ought to them at the local park before a runForm Drills:
I'm already doing weight training similar to what was suggested in one of the links with a single leg at a time for the press, extension and hamstring curl. I thought that by using both legs there would be a tendancy to favour one leg over the other and become out of balance. I have found that my left leg is slightly stronger than the right but being right handed my right arm is stronger than the left.Strength Training: