Getting the Theory and a Better Run

Happy Christmas Eve to everyone who celebrates Christmas and I hope that you have a very Merry Christmas tomorrow. I plan to Go For A Run in the morning and then eat way too much, followed by a nap and then a LONG walk. 🙂

Let’s get back to today.

After walking down-back with Bennie and Mary this morning, I decided to head into the gym for a treadmill run. No it was not stoopidly cold or anything like that, it was more that I just didn’t feel like dealing with the cold during my run.

However, I didn’t attempt to get anywhere near any shopping kind of place. I could see the road to the Market Place in Augusta was absolutely bonkers and had no wish to subject myself to that kind of stress.

I have been reading Phil Maffetone’s Big Book of Endurance on the Kindle App and getting a lot of the “why” behind MAF training after getting the eBook yesterday and blog post/articles that I have found online.

No, I am not completely convinced that MAF heart-rate training is going to be the cure to all my running ills, but something inside of me feels that at least parts of what Maffetone suggests are a part of the solution that I have been searching.

We will see.

The big thing with changing to this type of running without the theory or background is that it is a completely different mindset than I have had as a part of my running. I didn’t understand the rationales behind going slower and that caused me a lot of frustration on attempting to simply match a slower pace with a low-arse heart-rate.

Now that I have a better understanding of the theory behind running slower and how/why the heart-rate is set where it is. The results since I have gained a bit more knowledge has reduced my frustration factor significantly and I have made peace with myself with the advice of some running friends around keeping my heart-rate a bit different than what the MAF training method recommends.

So when I got on the treadmill this morning, I was actually looking forward to the challenge of keeping my heart-rate within spittin distance of 135 bpm and attempting to maintain a decent pace at that heart-rate.

I started at 6.2 mph and was able stay within my goals for 37:30 minutes – which pleasantly surprised me. Then I kept slowing down as my heart-rate increased, finally ending up at 5.8 mph. It is a strange…well it is a 180 degree change in attitude from attempting to speed up as I get closer to the end of the run, to keep it steady or even keep slowing down to maintain the correct heart-rate.

I am glad that I was wearing my chest heart rate strap and paid attention to the readout on the treadmill’s console, otherwise when I saw the heart-rate graph I might have freaked out a little. However, I am pretty sure that it was simply my Garmin doing Garmin type heart-rate monitor false reading things.

Especially since during this time I am damn near certain that the console reading was more in the 125-130 bpm very consistently, so it is a false reading. Then once thing got squared away a bit later, it was pretty close to the chest strap.

That is a problem with the wrist optical heart-rate based monitors, they are not as accurate/reliable as the chest strap – at least at this point and with this type of sensor that my Garmin FR35 uses.

The run itself was not hard, other than keeping going to the full 60:00 minutes. There were times when this or that had a little niggle and then it would go away. Otherwise I felt pretty good all the way.

I also did something a little different by running in my adidas Adios Boost 3s and they did just fine. No issues at all during the hour long run, which is a good thing. Being able to run that long in the AB3s gives me confidence a good option beyond the Tempo 9s and a slightly different feel when running.

The reality is that

Having some of the theory behind Maffetone’s MAF training method takes a LOT less frustrating, which in turn I believe makes it a lot less stressful to run by heart-rate.

Today’s run was a good training run.

My interest in learning more about Maffetone’s methods and heart-rate training has been piqued, but it does entail much more than simply running by heart-rate, there are some pretty significant lifestyle changes that will need to take place if I were to adhere strictly to this type of training.

I ain’t so good at following things to the letter and still tend to think that incorporating this into an 80/20 framework makes more sense to me at this point in time. However, I would like to give MAF training a good 1-3 months to see if it is something that I can stick with or not and how it fits into how I want to lead/live my life moving forward.