Runners in the UK were treated last month to a little in-person coaching from Dr. Jack Daniels at his latest VDOT Coaching Clinic. One of our favorite takeaways from the weekend was this quote from Jack:
“You must have guiding principles of training, not copy what works for the best athletes.”
This is the essence of Daniels’ Running Formula. So many coaches in history are recognized for the incredible success of one or a few athletes. What about everyone else they coached? When utilizing the principles outlined in Jack’s book you see broad success, not just with a few individuals.
This starts with both coach and athlete always understanding the purpose of every workout they are doing. If you’re doing Intervals one day, can you answer “What intensity, duration and how many Intervals you’re doing in that workout and why?”
Intervals stress your aerobic power (VO2max). They are run at 98-100% of your HRmax. It takes about two minutes for you to gear up to functioning at VO2max so the ideal duration of an “Interval” is 3-5 minutes each. The reason not to go past 5-minutes is to prevent anaerobic involvement, which can result in blood-lactate build-up. Work at VO2max should equal roughly 8% of total weekly mileage.