Posts in Running
What are my Training Zones?

I’ve noticed lately that a lot of people on various social media groups are asking questions about their training zones and how they can be fit in each zone. It occurred to me that there is a lot of information out there about training zones but it still leaves people feeling confused, perhaps because there are lots of different systems which use different calculations, metrics and language.

So what are my training zones? Here is a summary of the training zones for running:-

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Why are some of the runs in my training plan so short?

Here are some of the benefits of short runs:

  1. A way to turn the legs and activate the muscles and mitochondria which can promote recovery

  2. A way to get in some easy extra endurance miles

  3. A way to do some good quality High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

  4. A way to warm up before some strength and conditioning

  5. A way to focus on form by putting into practise running drills

  6. A way to come back after over-training or injury

  7. A way to increase the frequency of running.

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How do I get faster at trail running?

So how do you get faster at trail running? Well, the best way at getting good trail running is to do more trail running. However, there comes a point where you don’t have any more free time to run and your body can stop responding to the same stimulus; it then becomes a bit more complex than just doing more of the same thing.

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How do I know if I'm too tired to train?

Illness aside, if you feel tired but are generally healthy the best thing to do is to go out and have a go BUT if your heart rate is not responding or is going erratically high, or you are significantly off pace despite your best efforts, call it a day, run easy or rest, the session will be there another day. If this isn’t something that you feel you can achieve, the good news is there are other ways to track your levels of tiredness which will help you decide whether or not today is the day to train:

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How Many Calories does Running Burn?

As a rule of thumb, the average person running at an easy (conversational) pace on a flattish surface burns about 60 calories per km run (that’s 100 calories per mile). For most of the part this works well, but it gets a little more complicated when we consider things like pace, terrain and outliers to the norm (ie excessively heavy or light individuals).

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How Long-Term Stress Affects Endurance Training

So how did stress have such a drastic effect on my training? When we are using up a lot of energy on stress this can limit the energy we have left for good quality training; in addition to this when emotionally stressed it can take us longer to recover. Unfortunately it is difficult to monitor this closely as emotional stress is very subjective; what causes debilitating stress for one person is a perfect motivator for another.

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Why Aerobic Threshold Is Important and How to Use It to Get Fitter

Perhaps the most effective thing you can do to improve your ability to run or cycle faster for longer distances, longer than 2 hours up to several days, is to improve your speed or power at your aerobic threshold. I thought it would be a good idea to explain why this is and how you can use the knowledge to get faster, so I wrote this article. So, why is aerobic threshold important? Your aerobic threshold dictates how fast you can go for durations of more than around 2 hours

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The best running and cycling training diary, planning and analysis applications

There are a lot of applications available to track and analyse running, cycling and other endurance training sessions. I have used quite a few over the years and I thought it would be useful to combine my experience with that of my athletes and an in-depth survey of currently available diary application and analysis tools. So, what are the best cycling and running training and analysis applications? In no particular order, my top 3 applications are Strava, TrainingPeaks and Final Surge but I think combinations of applications work best. Read on to find out why.

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Can Walking Help Me Be a Better Trail Runner

So can walking help you be a better trail runner? As a way of cross training and getting in some guaranteed easy miles absolutely. But it’s a bit more complicated than just walking all the time and then becoming a good runner; you do still need to do some running to get fit, it’s more about varying the effort and intensity of your training, if you walk you are guaranteed to be working less hard than if you were running so it enables you to maintain some exercise without over straining. This can work particularly well for trail runners in several different ways

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What to eat and drink during your long bike rides, races and events

What you eat and drink during your long bike rides, races and events makes a huge difference to how fast you can go and how long you can ride for without having to stop or slow down. I have done some research and combined with my personal experience as a cyclist and a professional coach, here are some ideas that might help you.

So, what should you eat and drink during your long bike rides, races and events?

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Why you need rest and recovery to get fitter and faster

You may have heard that fitness develops during recoveries and not during your workouts. Here is a bit more detail on the subject and the reasons why recovery is so important.

So, why is rest and recovery needed for you to get fitter and faster? Training is a process of stressing your body to create a response and then waiting for it to respond and build up stronger before stressing it a bit more so that it responds again. Each of these stress/response cycles is a step towards increased fitness with the response occurring during periods of recovery and adaptation.

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Get fitter with good habits

I’ve been thinking about how people get fitter and stay fitter, in fact how we get better at anything, whether that is developing skills, being happier or achieving amazing sporting goals. It is all about creating and maintaining good habits. I thought it would be useful to share some of what I have learned from over 50 years in sport and my experiences as a professional running and cycling coach. So, why do you get fitter by developing good habits?

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Why do I need interval training to get faster?

Last week, I wrote an article about how to set the intensity of your interval training sessions and made a video about why you need interval training to help you get faster, so I thought it would be a good idea to explain why you should be doing interval training in more detail, to help explain in more detail how it will help you to get faster at your running, cycling or swimming. So, why do you need interval training to get faster?

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How do I establish a good training routine?

One of the ways I have found most helpful in ensuring that I complete my training is having a solid routine that I can use again and again. Spending time establishing this routine has been part of what has helped me train regularly even when my motivation has been low.

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11 Reasons you should do a race

Whilst I was pondering about things one evening, as I often do, I started thinking about why I got into running and cycling. I realised that although I like to train hard and do the best I can, there are many reasons that make entering and taking part in races or formal events worthwhile.

Here are my top 11:

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