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Marathon peaking article (Old board)

Posted: Mon Feb 05, 2007 1:12 am
by Ron
Thanks to maccy for supplying us with this saved post from the old message board:
maccy 32 Posts Posted - 01/15/2007 : 18:57:49
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Hi Tinman,

I saw in your article on Marathon peaking that 'slow twitch fibre' athletes tend to lose aerobic conditioning sooner than 'fast twitch' guys when tapering. Does this hold true down to the shorter events like 10km, and how does this fact affect training at the short distances? Does it mean that the fast twitch guys can do more speedwork without losing aerobic conditioning too much? Also, how would you know if you had 'fast twitch' muscles: a guy who does a 56s 400m might think he has it, but compared to an Olympian with 50s 400m he might not really have it?

Thanks

Maccy
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Tinman 709 Posts Posted - 01/15/2007 : 22:24:25
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maccy -

Yes, it holds true. If you have a high percentage of slow twitch fibers, you must NOT taper much from your normal training routine, regardless of event, or else you'll probably run poorly in your race.

Speed (typically short reps like 50s to 150)and speed-endurance (typically 200s to 600s at a fast speed) are two different things, by the way. Speed could mean really short reps at high speed. But, to make them a speed endurance workout, you only have to have minimal recoveries and all of a sudden your body is flooded with lactic acidosis. As soon as that happens, you'll risk eroding your aerobic efficiency and stamina. Not good at all! This relates to racing, too!

If you are a fast-twitch person and you do speed-endurance training prior to a race that is longer (let's say over a mile), then you'll probably not race well at all. Your legs will feel powerful when you are walking around and when you are running slowly, but you will falter after about 1/3rd of the race. If you are a fast-twitcher and your race is short, you can do quite well after training with speed-endurance - as long as you have 3-4 days to recover from it before you race!

A slow-twitcher will typically completely fall apart if given speed-endurance training in volume prior to a race. A small amount can put "pop" into a slow-twitcher's stride, by more than that spells TROUBLE.

Remember this final point, you can't take a slow-twitcher and cut his or her mileage and do a lot of high intensity training and expect a good race result. It just isn't going to happen! Even if the event is short, a slow-twitcher still needs to do a lot of volume!

Regards,

Tinman

Train Smart- reap the benefits!

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The Slow And The Furious


Australia
34 Posts
Posted - 01/16/2007 : 02:10:06
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Hi Tinman,

Can you recommend any good training sessions to do in the last several days before 5k/10k races? I have a 5K race this Sunday and I did 4x1200m CV (avg. 6:18 pace) with 3mins jog on Monday (six days out). I am thinking to do a low-volume quality workout on Wednesday, 9-10 miles easy on Thursday, and short easy runs + strides on Friday and Saturday. My weekly mileage is about 50.

Is this a sound plan? What do you suggest as a useful low-volume quality workout for Wednesday? (e.g. tempo, fartlek, hill charges ?).

Thanks in advance,


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Edited by - The Slow And The Furious on 01/16/2007 02:14:19

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Tinman


USA
709 Posts
Posted - 01/16/2007 : 02:22:17
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SAF -

Just do some 100m striders at 3k pace on Wed. or Thursday. 6-8 x 100m , jog 200m is enough.

Tinman

Train Smart- reap the benefits!

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maccy


32 Posts
Posted - 01/16/2007 : 03:53:30
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thanks Tinman

I was also wondering how to identify a fast or slow twitcher without having a bone sample taken

I think I may be a fast twitcher as I notice that at the track, guys who run faster than me in the 5km are a lot slower than me in a 100,200 or 400m. And a I could just about keep up over 400m with a guy who did a 30 min 10km, but would be 4 mins behind him in the 10km? I also when I was young had good success on low mileage with some speedwork. Are these clues, are there better ways to work it out?

Does this also mean fast twitchers may lose a lot more with age than slow twitchers as pure speed seems to go first?

Thanks

Maccy

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Tinman


USA
709 Posts
Posted - 01/16/2007 : 10:13:15
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maccy -

Based on your description, you are a fast twitcher. But, remember, if you want to run a long race, like the marathon, you still have to primarily do longer, moderate workouts. Don't think you can run some fast 400s and that is going to translate into a fast marathon.

Tinman

Train Smart- reap the benefits!

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maccy


32 Posts
Posted - 01/16/2007 : 12:43:08
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Hi Tinman

Thanks for the reply, I'm not into the marathon as yet, I just read your marathon article and was curious. At the moment I'm mostly a 5km to 15km guy who might do a 1500m or two in track season.

So, essentially, what are the main differences in training of a fast and slow twitcher? I read somewhere if a runner finds out what their strengths are, ie speed or distance, they should tailor their workouts accordingly?

Thanks

Maccy

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maccy


32 Posts
Posted - 01/16/2007 : 12:47:10
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oops,

I think you partially answered that one, although if you have anything to add....

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Tinman


USA
709 Posts
Posted - 01/16/2007 : 17:39:29
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Not much to add. It is fairly simple. If you are a fast twitcher, you just need a bit more faster work in your program to "feel right" and develop to your potential than a slow twitcher.

Remember, during the specialization phase (the third phase of training) you must focus on prepping for the demands of your race.

If I have two 1500m runners, one might do this workout: 4 x 1k at 3k pace plus 4 x 200 at 1500m pace. The other one might do this workout: 4 x 500m at just slow tad slower than 800m pace with a long jog recovery.

Tinman

Train Smart- reap the benefits!

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maccy


33 Posts
Posted - 01/16/2007 : 23:01:36
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thanks for all the replies,

just to expand further, I was wondering. Does this difference in fast and slow twitch athletes only affect how each primarily do their speed or faster sessions, and would both types generally do the same mileage and same ratio of aerobic work?

so if athlete A (slow twitch), did:
4 days easy/steady 5 miler, 1 day tempo run, 1 day speedwork, 1 day long slow run,

then would athlete B (fast twitch), basically do the same except just do a different type of speedwork

Basically, would A and B be doing similar weekly mileage and types of runs, and then just different speed sessions, or would their training plans differ in other areas too?

Sorry if my terms are a bit loose, but I'm just trying to get a general picture. I'm also not really at the level of application where I would be using specialization phases yet

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Tinman


USA
711 Posts
Posted - 01/16/2007 : 23:08:35
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All things being equal, a fast twitcher will do less mileage than a slow twitcher. The fast twitcher will run faster while using less mileage and the slow twitcher will do more while doing slower mileage. It applies during all phases of training.

A runner like Peter Snell was at his very upper limit when running 90-100 miles per week - because he was explosive, naturally. It took a lot concentrated effort to get up to that mileage. It was horribly challenging to do the mileage Lydiard asked of him. There were times when he did not run at all - most likely the drudgery of putting in the necessary heavy mileage was taxing to a large degree.

A guy like Murray Halberg, though fairly strong over the mile distance, too, was much better suited for "putting in the miles." He didn't have near the natural explosiveness, so he adjusted quickly to mileage and could do it week after week without a problem at all.

Tinman

Train Smart- reap the benefits!

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