Sunday, January 2, 2011
I split a 9 mile run into two halves: 4.5 miles on the treadmill and 4.5 miles outside, mostly on packed snow. There's very little pain left in my right foot and it's getting better every day. I'll continue with comfortable easy runs for the few weeks. Since I know I caused the pain in my foot by running "too hard too often," so I've started to read about Dr. Ernst Van Aaken who developed a specific long, slow distance approach to running based on endurance training consisting mainly of long distance training plus speed training, however, the ratio of long distance running to speed training was quite conservative.
Dr. Van Aaken believed the classic interval method stressed too much speed and high intensity work. I've order his book, "The Van Aaken Method." The Van Aaken method is similar to Authur Lydiard's method but there are some clear differences. While Dr. Van Aaken agreed with interval principles and speed training he believed that high speed intervals blocked endurance rather than building it and that the continual practicing of high speed, beyond racing speed, was uneconomical and led to a decrease in reserves.
He stressed that the bulk of running should be done at a heart rate of about 130 beats per minute and that doing too much running at 140-200 beats per minute placed too heavy a strain on the cardio-vascular system to allow proper adaption. Endurance running at about 130 beats per minute should comprise the vast majority of a runners' schedule (85%+ of the weekly running) should concentrate on daily average runs at this comfortable pace. He believed the other 15% or so should focus on (1) interval speed runs of 400, 800 and 1,000 meters but not at speeds any faster than race pace with full recovery before the next interval and (2) very short interval sprints of 50 meters with full recovery (i.e., 50 meters hard and 50 "float" for 10 or more track laps).
As for results, one of his students, Meinrad Nagele, that followed his method was 43 years old and ran the 5k in 15:41, 10k in 32:23 and the marathon in 2:37. Meinrad was interesting in that he didn't start running until he was 37 years old and at age 46, ran a marathon in 2:29:45. He was 6 ft. tall and when he started running he weighed over 210 lbs. but by age 43, he was 145 lbs. I've ordered Dr. van Aaken's book, "The Van Aaken Method," as I'm quite interested in this approach.
Dr. Van Aaken was a specialist in sports medicine and physiology and studied the way children run to develop his method and his research showed that if his approach was followed, it allowed runner's to successful run into their 70's, 80's and 90's. I'll definitely be taking a deep dive into his methods.
Posted by - at 1:24 PM