alsoran runners Don Oliver's Central Gauteng
December 2016
Training Programme for Comrades 2017

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Don Oliver's Training Programme

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Where are we now? 

187 days to go and where are you standing regarding your hopes for a Comrades medal next year. You have done a hard 32km just last week for your longest run so far and your half marathon time is now close to 2hours 6mins. Your consistent training this year will stand you in good stead as the kilometres increase next year. You have been enjoying two rest days per week to avoid overtraining. Next month, January 2017, Comrades candidates increase their training to 6days / week. You are ready for that.

Your first big test was the RAC Tough One 32km held just this last weekend. The time limit of 3hour 15mins was generous but the course was hard. If any failed to meet the target all is not lost but a careful examination for your failure has to be identified. If you got very tired in the last 8kms then you were either not trained properly or your time management was at fault. Maybe you went out too fast not bearing in mind the distance and nature of the course. Maybe you bailed because you did not have a strong enough mind to carry on when the going got tough? A race of this distance is a good trial for the longer distances coming up next year. In the heat you have to find a suitable drinking pattern, if necessary boosted by squeezies.  All your clothing and accessories must be useful and comfortable. Your running friends must be well matched in terms of sheer running ability and also compatibility as the race progresses. To all the successful runners who finished comfortably and well within the time limit, well done and success breeds success. This is just one success of many you will enjoy next year.

December is holiday month but it is not a time to go to excess and run huge kms while on holiday. I made a mistake in Cape Town one year by running, for me a huge 534kms in the month over fairly hard routes and races. In March of the next year I was brought down by a very bad Achilles tendon tear which took all of 18months to fully heal. I very nearly went for surgery and was booked for the operation the next day but was persuaded to get a final physiotherapy by the right person and it healed. I am not recommending a hard month in December but at the same time you have to be well built-up for the rigours of Comrades training starting in earnest in January. I suggest if you are away from home, run the local time trial and any short races but be careful of the locals taking you on “an easy run” which is sadistically designed to break you C.G. tough runners. from Jo’burg.

For those runners remaining behind in C.G this month the same rules apply. Stay well trained but not over trained. The Tough One will require some recovery by a few days rest and a gradual return to the programme. You need to get used to running a big race and then having to recover quickly to get on with the Comrades programme and probably run another tough race two weeks later. In the build-up to Comrades we always have a short weekend run after a marathon or ultra, so try a gentle 15km on the weekend of December 4th 2016. Being a festive month take part in the not too serious Wobblers and Wigglers Hat Race at Pirates on Friday December 16th 2016. Try out drinking and running. 

Here is your training programme for December 2016.

Objective. To run 208km by training regularly for 5days/week for 4 weeks.

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4
w/c 05/12/16 12/12/16 19/12/16 26/12/16
Tuesday 8km T/T  8km T/T  8km T/T  8km T/T 
Wednesday 8km  8km  8km  8km 
Thursday 10km  10km 10km 10km
Friday 8km 10km race 8km 8km
Saturday REST REST 10km REST
Sunday 20km 20km0 Christmas day 25km
Total 54km 56km 44km 54km

Total kms for December 2016 = 208km 

Recommended races:
December 16th 2016 Wigglers and Wobblers Hat Race. Greenside.

Don Oliver
Cape Town
November 2016

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External links: Official Comrades Marathon website;  
4 Hills for Lindsay 

Copyright Don Oliver 2014