alsoran runners Don Oliver's WP
February 2017
Training Programme for Comrades 2017

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Don Oliver's Training Programme

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Where are we now? 

96 days to go. This is really the countdown when you get to below 100 days left. Of course it is a bit frightening to think you don’t have much to show. Haven’t even qualified yet and furthest you have run is 36km that took about 4 hours. You are contemplating running for a lot longer up to 11 hours and running as far as 87kms. Don’t panic, you are on a well trusted programme. Anyone further down the line ahead of our programme is courting a disaster. Focus on the qualifying marathon this month. Go for the Peninsula Marathon on February 19th or a week later go to Cango Marathon on February 25th in Oudtshoorn.  Either of the two are suitable this year but not both! After the marathon you have to do a 50km training run two or three weeks later on March 11th 2017.  The rule for training for Comrades is to only run 15km the weekend following a marathon. Don’t put yourself at risk for injury or tiredness from overtraining by running 20 or 30 km after a marathon.

To prepare for the Peninsula you need to have a plan and a Pacing Chart. The plan must include a target time under 5hours. You should already know who you will be running with. Discard the friends who are a bit too fast for you and avoid those irritating companions who insist on talking a load of boring drivel for 4hours. Buy your squeezies well in advance and take 5 along the road with you. Do a rehearsal to store the sachets and tuck a hankie in as well. Looks as if a generous coating of sunblock is essential this year. Check all your transport and travel plans. Early start 05.15a.m and a point to point race. Maybe come back from Simonstown on the train? In your tog bag at the finish will be your recovery drink to take in the first half hour after finishing. No complaints if it gets hot or windy or both. Just put your head down and get on with the job. You can also have any sort of weather at Comrades

Pacing Chart for Peninsula Marathon to finish in 4hours 20mins.

Km Board Stopwatch Time
10km1hour 00mins
15km1hour 30mins
20km2hour 00mins
21km half way2hour 06mins
25km2hour 30mins
30km3hour 02mins
35km3hour 34mins
40km4hour 05mins
42km Finish4hour 19mins

If you don’t fancy a Pacing Chart and have a GPS stopwatch you can programme in your chosen running speed .The Pacing Chart uses 6mins/km in the first half; 2hours 6mins and a slower second half of 2hours 13mins at a pace of 6,3mins/km .

The basic plan overall is to qualify for Comrades in 5hours therefore if for any reason plans and schedules get shelved, still walk/runto finish under the 5hour cut off.  Familiarise yourself with the route. You will meet the runners from the 21km start at Bergvleit at 7.00a,m which will get very crowded. There is a long climb from Simonstown station to the finish at the Naval Base. If a south easter is blowing it will be head on. Just buckle down to it and push on.

There has been changes to our Long Run programme caused by the cancellation this year of the 4 Hills for Lindsay 56km on May 1st.  A revised programme is given below where the schedule for 2 standards and three ultras are provided with the necessary rest weekends in between.

The Cango marathon in Oudtshoorn is very popular with its slight downhill profile and is scheduled for Saturday February 25th 2017 and then fit into the schedule below with the 50km long run on March 11th 2017 which is two weeks later. This marathon is acceptable as part of the programme this year.

W.P. Training programme 2017 Long Runs.

February 19thCape Peninsula Marathon42km
March 11th Gordons Bay to Kleinmond50km
March 26th Club Run42km
April 15thTwo Oceans marathon56km
April 29th Bellville to Hout Bay54km
June 4th Comrades marathon87km
1.  There are organised long runs arranged by Wietse Long Runs leaving Willowbridge, Bellville each Saturday morning at 5.30 a.m .In the table above you can run;
March 11th 2017 Wietse se Run Gordansbay to Kleinmond 50km.
April 29th 2017 Bellville to Hout Bay 54km
2. The weekend after a marathon or ultra marathon you can only run maximum of 15km.
3. Most ideal training for Comrades between January and June is two standard marathons and three ultras in a grand total of 1200km in races and training

Here is your February training programme.

Objective: To qualify to run the Comrades marathon by finishing the Peninsula Marathon 42km in less than 4hours 40mins.

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4
w/c 06/02/17 13/02/17 20/02/17 27/02/17
Tuesday 8km T/T 8km T/T 8km T/T 8km T/T
Wednesday 8km  8km  8km  8km 
Thursday 12km 12km 10km 12km
Friday 8km 8km 8km 8km
Saturday 5km  REST 5km  8km
Sunday 20km  42km race 15km 30km
Total 61km 78km 54km 74km
Total kms for February 2017 = 267km

Recommended races:
19th February 2017 Cape Peninsula Marathon 42km. Green Point.
25th February 2017 Cango marathon 42km Oudtshoorn

Thought for the month: “Now I have qualified I can get on with the proper Comrades training”

Don Oliver
Cape Town
January 2017

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