Half Ironman Run Training
Hi I'm a 17 year old male, self training for my first half Ironman in November.
I've been swimming since I was four but my running is terrible. I train 5 times a week differing my run sessions, but I don't think my runs are improving that much.
My distance running has improved but I'm not fast over the distance. Ultimately in around 10 years I want to become competitive at Ironman but with my poor run, I'm worried about this.
Is there anything better I can incorporate into my training or anything I can do to help my run? Thanks
Intelligent Triathlon Training replies:
First of all, 10 years is plenty of time to improve your running! For the longer distances, running economy becomes more important than it is for the shorter races. The most economical athletes tend to be those who have accumulated the most miles in training, ie generally slightly older athletes.
So it is likely that your running economy will naturally improve over time, which will help your running performance.
There are things you can do to help improve your economy, which would also improve your run-specific strength. These things would be running drills, hill reps (up and down), and some basic strength training.
The key to improving your running performance and running economy is consistent training, gradually building up your mileage. Just make sure you don't try to up your mileage or volume of running too much too soon as you don’t want to get injured.
To improve your performance over half-Ironman and particularly Ironman, you need to increase the speed at which your first threshold ( lactate threshold 1 or LT1) occurs, and your endurance at this speed.
Without knowing more details about your current running training it is hard to give specific advice about how you can do this. Feel free to comment on this page with more details if you’d like more info.
Thing that would be useful to know would be times you have run for certain distances (10km, half-marathon – on own and/or as part of a triathlon, marathon if you have done one) and what sort of run sessions you are currently doing.
For some general advice about improving your run speed at LT1 have a look at our page on improving run speed.