If you’re ever wondering what speed you should be doing read and remember these three key words and you will have a clear understanding of training intensity: Aerobic, Anaerobic and Threshold.
Aerobic or easy
Aerobic or easy = comfortable intensity.
It is an intensity you can train at for a long time i.e. running and chatting about what coffee shop you’re going to finish at.
Anaerobic or tempo
Anaerobic or tempo = Uncomfortable.
It is bordering on not really being able to engage in a conversation possibly struggling to remember where that coffee shop was.
Threshold or race pace
Threshold or race pace = Breathless.
Race intensity, even if you wanted to talk you can’t as you are in the moment of battle.
Now that we have our ‘feel cues’ we need to remember a few key things before applying speed into our training and preparation for an event or goal session.
Often we think speed is 5km running off a bike and I’m positive that if you speak to a 5km specialist or an amazing runner like Jackson Elliot he will tell you that speed is strength, or our ability to sustain constant power output for a long period of time. As our strength/speed develops through what we call ‘building a base’ or building the ‘engine’ we must remember that we need to be using repetition.
A2d or application to dedication. Being connected or present to your session is what gives us the cutting edge to have speed when we need to dig just that little bit deeper.
How often should we do speed training?
Personally for my athletes and myself we try and touch on back end speed. This means the last part of our session has intensity. We do this minimum 1-2 sessions per week in each discipline depending on where my athletes are with fatigue, work, personal, mental fatigue as everybody is different and coaching is a personal thing that can be adapted to everyone.
Implement speed strategies two-five weeks out from key events giving our bodies time to adapt and absorb the work load and change of intensity. Remember recovery times should always be longer when we ask our bodies to dig that little bit deeper.
One big mistake I often see is athletes training in fi fth gear i.e. the fastest they can go. This leaves no where to go on race day so remember this saying next time you think about trying to race the person next to you on the track or in the pool ‘train in 4th, race in 5th, results are forever PB’s come and go!’ We need to be effi cient training machines before we hit the speed.
Keeping it simple
Some people get fancy and try and reinvent the training theory’s but I fi nd the simpler the session the more effective it is. Here is an example of a couple of sessions I like to give my athletes to add some speed into their week of training.
Warm up 10mins
2 x 90sec at 10km race pace with equal rest jogging
4 x 60sec at 5km race pace equal rest jogging
4 x 30sec at 5km pace last 10sec quicker
Cool down 10 mins
Wind trainer simple set
20min high cadence 95+
4 x 3min build each minute higher heart rate to race intensity equal rest
8 x 30sec hard 90sec recovery
So team there is an insight into speed training. In triathlon training we need a good base of comfortable miles, then add some structured intensity sessions as we lead into races.
Remember the number one rule, don’t get caught up with what the guy at the front of the group ride is doing. Always save a little for race day and trust me you will surprise yourself with the times you can achieve.Tags: Cycling, Fitness, Running, Speed