Finding one's limits

Finding one’s limit, to push (break) the boundaries, to extend one’s frontiers, to expand one’s horizons, to seek the unknown, to experiment, to explore the realm of possibilities, to boldly go….


Actually I like to think that I’m trying to push beyond my boundaries and see what’s on the other side (or on the inside). Hopefully I'll discover a higher realm of fitness and understanding about what my body can absorb and adapt to. Everything I do with my body, mind and soul is an experimental journey to find out what works and what doesn't. I generally take everything to extremes some healthy and some not so (drinking, smoking, insert other bad habits here...) but the path that I'm trying to follow will hopefully bring me to a higher level understanding about me.

Which brings me to now...

I was reading a post from the fitness black book (i think) and from the page I followed this link and after reading through the program I decided to adapt it to running and give it a go. Looking back at my training this year it looks like I’ve either been building or maintaining my base fitness from the early season ultra-marathons but as I’ve decided to try to get faster and race more often I need to incorporate some regular speedwork sessions into my program to improve and take it to the next level.

So now that I’ve completed Day 3 of the program and started to maintain a training log again I can see that I’ve actually run 5 days (maybe more but no memory or records of runs prior to Sunday) of quality sessions back-to-back. Sunday was an 80min longish run which out of boredom necessitated that I include 4 x 10mins at marathon pace effort (~4:00/km) to reduce the mental strain, Monday included a 15km moderate run (61mins) at lunch and after work I ran a hard 30min tempo session at close to 10k race pace (3:50/k), Tuesday morning I ran an interval session which included 1x1000m (3:36), 3x800m (2:52, 2:53, 2:50), 6x200m and then ran another 9km at lunch. So why would I then decide to move my training right into a 14 day VO2 boost program. Doesn’t make sense does it but a lot of what I do is considered a little crazy and on the brink of insanity which is often pointed out to me by my endurance junkie mates. Well Day 3 (or Day 5) has come and gone and I am laughing in the face of fatigue. My legs feel great, no niggles whatsoever and I'm feeling very fit... and very hungry.

Here is an outline of what I'm doing for the next two weeks.



VO2 Max Booster Program


This training program will dramatically boost your race performance in only 14 days. The training program can be used by any cyclist… or in my case adapted for running. On top of what is set out below I’m also keeping up with my twice daily runs making a second run either before or after the VO2 boost session an easy run of 40-70mins or a cross-training session which will either be a ride or a spin class.


I’ve often included “crash-training” principles into my training from time to time but I was attracted to this program after reading the following statement “The VO2 Max Booster Program is intended to be used by healthy athletes who want to increase their performance in just 14days. It’s clear that this short time limits the improvements you can achieve. Still, you will probably be amazed how much this time effective training program can do for you!”


Day 1
Total time: 1hr training
20min incremental warm up
5min easy rolling
5min VO2 max test
30min Easy/medium rolling


Now it is time for you to enter the VO2 Max Booster Program by performing the 5min test as the first step out of 14 steps to a higher VO2max. Good luck! OK I skipped the test as I had a physiological test done for both VO2 and LT when I ran my last marathon and I feel that my fitness is currently close to that level. After the completion of the program I will do the test (or enter a race) and see if I’ve effectively improved my fitness.


Day 2
Total time: 1hr training
20min incremental warm up
10 x (30+30sec) 100 / 50% VO2 Max
30min Easy/medium rolling

Day 3
Total time: 1hr training
10min incremental warm up
3 x (5+10min) 90% / 50% of your VO2 Max test result
5min Easy rolling


Day 4
Total time: 1hr training
20min incremental warm up
6 x (40+20sec) 95% / 50% of your VO2 Max test result
4min easy rolling
6 x (40+20sec) 95% / 50% of your VO2 Max test result
4min
6 x (40+20sec) 95% / 50% of your VO2 Max test result
14min easy rolling


Day 5
Total time: 30min training
10min incremental warm up
20x(15+15sec) 100% / 50% VO2 max test result
10min easy rolling


Day 6
Total time: 1hr training
10min incremental warm up
5min 70% VO2 max
3min 75% VO2 max
2min 80% VO2 max
5x(30+30sec) 100 / 50% VO2 max
5min 50%
5x(30+30sec) 100 /50% VO2 max
5min 50%
5x(30+30sec) 100 /50% VO2 max
5min 50%
5x(30+30sec) 100 /50% VO2 max
5min easy rolling


This is a super hard VO2 max interval session that will dramatically boost your VO2 max. It is time effective and guaranteed to change your view of what interval sessions can do for you. Go for it!


Day 7
Total time: app. 1hr
10min incremental warm up
5min 70% VO2 max
3min 75% VO2 max
2min 80% VO2 max
10min 60% VO2 max
?? x (30+30sec) 100 / 50% VO2 max (close to your max repetitions, but no failure training)
15min easy rolling


Day 8
Total time: 1hr
20min incremental warm up
3x (5+3min) 80 / 50% VO2 Max
16min min medium/ easy rolling

Day 9
Total training: 1hr15min
15min incremental warm up
50min race/fartlek
10min cool down


Day 10
Total time: 30min
10min incremental warm up
5 x (30+30sec) 100% VO2 Max
10min easy rolling

Day 11
Total time: 1hr
15min incremental warm up
6 x (3+2min) 85% / 50%
15min easy rolling


Day 12
Total time: 1hr
12min incremental warm up
3min 80%
3min 50%
2x(3+3min) 100 / 50%
10min 50%
2x(3+2min) 80 / 50%
10min easy rolling


Day 13
Total time: 40min
20min incremental warm up
5min 85%
5min 50%
10min easy rolling


Day 14
Total time: 1hr15min
20min incremental warm up
8 x (30+30sec) 100 / 50%
7min 50%
8 x (30+30sec) 100 / 50%
7min 50%
?? x (30+30sec) 100 / 50% (Maximum number of intervals possible!)
10min easy rolling


Congratulations! You’re have completed the VO2 Max Booster Program! Afterwards I recommend you to take some easy days, maybe a day off, to recover from this overload of VO2 max intervals. Remember what I said about overreaching? You are not overtrained now, you are overreached and in the next couple of days you will begin to super compensate for the last 14 days impressive workload.


5min max test to find your new VO2 Max - Well I think I can find a race instead.

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