Daily Log 11 May 2011




One of the most important component of preparing for any sports (or for that matter any activity, sports or non-sports) is to have a training plan. Training plans helps me keep myself focussed on what I need to do to prepare for a race. I’ve read a lot of books and there’s also a lot of training plans out there on the web. So far, my own training plan is a bit haphazard as I used to focus a lot on losing weight and building my aerobic base. So the plan was very simple. Swim, cycle and run at a low intensity (65%-80% MHR) and do it for about an hour or so.

About 3 weeks ago I transitioned to building pace and power in order to get faster times. This is a completely different type of training and involves more interval work and sometimes goes up to 80%-90% MHR in terms of intensity. The downside to this is that the workouts are much shorter and I do tend to get worried that I’m not achieving much.

I use a POLAR RS 800 CX  as well as the Polar ProTrainer 5 which is a windows based training software. Among the many features of both the RS 800 CX and the Polar ProTrainer 5 is the ability to import training plans and the training plans are freely downloadable at the Polar website. I downloaded the 10 weeks advanced 10k training plan by Ironman and Marathon Coach Brendon Downey and am now using it as part of the my running training plan.

The plan calls for running 5 days of the week and has intervals trainings, easy jogs, long runs and hill runs. It’s more structured than what I’m used to and the intensity increases as the weeks go by. My next 10km event is the KL Standard Chartered Marathon on 26 June with the triathlon coming in 4 weeks after that. My current best for the 10km is 93 minutes which I ran in the Larian Bomba 2011. I want to bring it down to 75 minutes and I have 10 weeks to do it.

The great thing about using a POLAR is that it’s like having your own personal coach and if used properly can be an indispensable tool. Being able to load training plans like this designed by someone like Coach Downey is just brilliant. I wish there was a similar downloadable training plan for cycling. I have to find or just create one manually. I’m not worried for the swimming part because I have a proper coach for that.

NOTE: I need to start reminding people that all the tips I write about comes from books and articles that I read. I am hardly the expert on the stuff and am still learning the stuff. If you haven’t been working out or running for a lont time, make sure you check with your doctors before you start working out. Better to be safe.


Today was another day spent on Core workouts focussing on the lower body which means squats, lunges and all of that nice fun stuff. Yesterday I worked on the upper body and I’m now beginning to feel the effect of that. I am sure I will feel the effect of todays Core Workout tomorrow.


I’ve added another workout option called Transition workouts. These are different from Brick workout in that it’s a very short biking session before a run workout or a very short run after a bike workout. Brick Workouts are usually full fledge workouts for both disciplines. Why do this? To get your legs and body used to the changes in movement for both disciplines. In fact I use the short 10 minute bike transition as the warm up for the run and use the run as the cool down for the bike.


According the the 10km training plan, I’m supposed to do interval workouts for this afternoon’s run. That was tough.  The intervals are as follows:

Bike Warm up 15 minutes
Hard run at 70%-80% MHR 4 minutes
Walk/jog at 60%-70% 2 minutes

Hard run at 70%-80% MHR 4 minutes

Walk/jog at 60%-70% 1minute
Hard run at 80%-90% MHR 2 minutes
10 minutes cool down

During the hard run portion I was clocking 2 minutes per lap (compare that to my usual 2 mins 45 to 3 mins for the same lap during normal days). The first lap of doing this went fine but I find it was much tougher to maintain the same pace for the second lap. When it came to the walk/jog session it seemed so short and before I knew it I was off running hard again.

When it came to the final hard run (this time with only 1 minute easy and 2 mins at a higher intensity of 80%-90%) I was already close to running out of energy. I sure was glad that that workout had ended.

Still, one day I hope to be able to run that lap at 2 mins at 80% MHR. That would be great day indeed.

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