3 Ways Out of a Running Rut

Expand Your "Week"

Seven days is a fairly narrow window to achieve all of your training needs. Most of our ZAP Fitness athletes arrive here from college with a schedule like this: Sunday long run, Monday hard intervals, Tuesday easy running, Wednesday tempo run, Thursday medium long run, Friday easy running, Saturday race. 

This type of week leaves little time for recovery between intense sessions, and can commonly lead to injury. Upon graduating from college, many of our athletes expand their week to 10 days, leaving more time between intense workouts. In this format, improvements come quickly. 

More: The Importance of Rest for Runners

Try thinking of your typical week outside the normal "seven-day" box. Do you have the flexibility for a long run on a Tuesday, or a tempo run on a Saturday? If so, perhaps this small change could keep you healthier and more consistent. And we all know where that leads ? PRs!

I want to be very clear regarding my intention with this piece. My goal is by no means for you to inherently change your training (unless of course you have gone years without improvement). On the contrary, I encourage all of you to be "year in and year out" consistent. Too often I, and my fellow coaches, find that most runners do not give their programs enough time to see results, but rather change their training as often as their socks. 

My intention is simply for you to inject some freshness into your consistent training program. Paradoxically changing your training in a variety of small ways—venues, masking workouts and expanding your week to 8/9/10 days—can be effective ways to achieve these ends.

More: 6 Tips to Expand Your Training Schedule

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About the Author

Pete Rea

ZAP Fitness is a Reebok sponsored nonprofit facility that supports post-collegiate distance runners in Blowing Rock, North Carolina. ZAP puts on adult running camps during the summer, and is available for retreats all year. The facility has a state-of-the-art weight room, a bio-lab for physiological testing and a 24-bed lodge. Coaches at the facility include two-time Olympic trials qualifier Zika Rea, Ryan Warrenburg and head coach Pete Rea. Visit zapfitness.com, check out ZAP's Facebook page for more info, or call 828-295-6198.

ZAP Fitness is a Reebok sponsored nonprofit facility that supports post-collegiate distance runners in Blowing Rock, North Carolina. ZAP puts on adult running camps during the summer, and is available for retreats all year. The facility has a state-of-the-art weight room, a bio-lab for physiological testing and a 24-bed lodge. Coaches at the facility include two-time Olympic trials qualifier Zika Rea, Ryan Warrenburg and head coach Pete Rea. Visit zapfitness.com, check out ZAP's Facebook page for more info, or call 828-295-6198.

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