Sunday, 7 August 2011

Reflection on 2011 training...

With less than a week to go now until the NDW100 all my training has been done and my taper is in full swing. I thought it would be interesting to compare my miles run in training in 2011 compared to 2010 when I was training for the 24hr Thunder Run. Both events are within 2 weeks of one another so the training period (Jan-July) is the same.

My interest in the numbers also stems from the cross training I have done on the ElliptiGO since the new year. I know I have done less running but how much less. And the BIG question is whether my fitness has improved as a result, stayed the same or reduced.

Anyway the numbers read as follows:

In 2010 (Jan - July) I completed 89 runs covering a total distance of 995 miles. Average of 11 miles per run and 3 runs per week.

In 2011 in the same period I have completed 62 runs covering 705 miles.  Interestingly with exactly the same average of 11 miles per run but just 2 runs per week! In total 290 miles less than 2010 which equates to roughly 1/3 less. 

So surely I'm no where near as fit as I was last year with such low weekly mileage. Runners World would have you believe that you should run 5 days per week if you want to see real improvement in your fitness and race performances.

Well I think that's utter nonsense and that you can run far less than that. It quality not quantity that really matters here. Of course where I have also been putting in the cross training miles is on my ElliptiGO. And I think it's these low impact training miles that will make the difference come next weekend. I've covered 1,865 miles on the GO since January with 47 sessions averaging 40 miles per ride (64 miles per week). And I've thoroughly enjoyed everyone of those!

So the true test lies next weekend at NDW100. Will my low running mileage be laid out to bare with me laid out on the dirt! Or will my new approach to 'less is more' pay off. Only time will tell...


  1. Thanks for sharing this valuable info with us, Stu and all the very best for the NDW100. I have a feeling this will be your best performance to date.

  2. Good luck with the NDW100, Stu.

    re: training - in preparation for the UTLD100, for the most part I followed the FIRST training program for marathons which is largely based on fewer sessions at higher intensity. On the whole, I absolutely know it has made me a faster, stronger runner than I was at this time last year even though, compared to others, I've got very little mileage on the clock.

    Of course, I'm hardly a good example because I DNF'd - not surprising that I probably averaged 20 miles a week for 15 weeks leading up to the race (most was probably ~40 in any given week) but while limited mileage didn't help, it certainly wasn't the sole or even primary reason I retired at 75 miles.

    Anyway, I'm on the verge of starting a running blog and will discuss this in more detail. Looking forward to hearing about the NDW100 soon!