If you’re over 40 and training for a race, you need to read this.
The best way to hit your goals on race day is to avoid overtraining & injury.
Unfortunately, it’s easier said than done. Most runners struggle to complete their training plans without missing runs (or running through pain).
As a Physical Therapist, I find that most injuries boil down to “training plan errors.”
Two areas in particular: recovery and pacing.
Learn more in this video:
The 80% Rule
Most runners are pacing too fast through their runs – even the easy days!
Pushing too hard often results in overtraining and injury.
If you’re over 40 or prone to injuries, I urge you to pull back. Focus instead on easy base pace for 80% of your runs. The other 20% can be tempo or race pace.
I promise you this is the best path to a PR on race day.
The 60% Rule
Your goal should be to run 60% of your peak distance BEFORE you start training.
For instance, if your peak distance is 50 mi/km, you should average running 30 mi/km for a few weeks before starting your plan.
Doing this will give you a good base for injury prevention.
Once you start training, it’s essential to prioritize your recovery time.
That’s why I recommend running 60% of your peak distance every third week.
Build toward your goal for two weeks, then drop back for one week.
Using the prior example, your weekly volume may look like this:
*40, 44, 30, 44, 47, 30
Notice the drop to 60% of peak volume?
This strategy works well to prevent overtraining and injury.
Getting to race day feeling fast & injury-free can be tough – especially for runners over 40.
That’s why I recommend using the 80-60% principles outlined above. Although simple strategies, each provides protection against overtraining & injury.
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