How To Train More Like A Competitive Runner

running zones zone 2 training zone 3 training May 27, 2022

IMAGE: UNSPLASH / JOHN LEMON

 

How do you train more like a competitive runner?

 

Competitive runners have phases to their training and don't just go out and run hard every day on the same route.

A common strategy to take training one step farther is to measure heart rate with a heart rate monitor.

This can be helpful to monitor intensity while running and can give you a better feel for what your efforts look like in an objective way.

More specifically, it is important to consider which heart rate zone to prioritize when running. 

I hate to break it to ya, but running all out until it "feels hard" every time is not the answer. 
 
 
 
 
 

Here is a summary of the zones and what they are good for:

 

 “Easy” Zone 1 & 2 Running:⁣

- Increases fat burning enzymes⁣ ⁣
- Increases the size of your heart and how much blood you can pump⁣
 
These physiological adaptations are your aerobic base.
 

 

⁣ “Hard” Zone 4 & 5 Running:

⁣- Increases VO2 max⁣
- Increases lactate threshold⁣
- Improves speed⁣
 
These adaptations are great to pursue in your build phase.
 

 

“Kinda Hard” Zone 3 Training:⁣

- Not ideal for driving either adaptation, but great for maintaining both ⁣
- This is great to program in a taper before your race but NOT year round all the time ⁣
 
 
 
Moral of the story, don't spend all your time going hard.
Spending time to build an aerobic base is imperative. 
 
 
 

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