Back To School: Learn From These Training Mistakes

Adhere To The Purpose Of Workouts

I wanted every training day to be faster. If my coach assigned me a tempo run, I was disappointed if I didn’t run faster than scheduled. In the days before GPS watches, we ran the same courses every day and I had every run recorded (and checkpoints along the way) to compare to previous days. A good day was running faster than I ever had before.

As a result, I wasn’t getting the full value from workouts (a threshold run is not targeting your threshold if it’s at race pace) and I wasn’t utilizing easy days as intended (to recover and build aerobic endurance). It was wasted training.

In today’s training environment with apps, watches and training platforms designed to measure and record every waking (and sleeping) data point, the temptation to always want to beat previous runs is more difficult to ignore than ever.

Unfortunately, using tracking devices to be faster in training every day is backwards. Instead, we should use that data to adhere to the purpose of each run to extract maximum value from that session.

Rather than being excited that you ran your fastest easy day ever, use your watch to slow yourself down when you see the pace creeping faster. Instead of seeing if you can beat your previous tempo run pace, challenge yourself to be more consistent with your splits and spend more time in your threshold zone.

RELATED: Advance Your Fitness With Progression Runs

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