We typically use this running calculator with your results from either the Coopers Run Test or the Critical Velocity Test. Simply type in the distance and the time in which it took to populate your training pace guide.There are many factors that can reduce the validity of your pace guide, including the temperature, terrain and elevation, altitude, your training fatigue, wind and even factors such as hormones. For that very reason we favour Heart Rate training over pacing, but we realise not everyone has a sports watch with a heart rate monitor.
ZONE 2 ‘Endurance’ Running = Improved endurance base
- The biggest portion of our weekly volume should be done in this zone.
- The goal is not to improve the pace of which you can execute these runs, rather that you can increase the duration without fatigue.
- The focus of zone 2 is to gently develop the endurance and strength of the muscular system with minimal fatigue.
- For those learning or returning to running, this again may be best achieved with a run walk ratio, and with conditioning, that can progress to a run.
ZONE 3 ‘Tempo’ Running = Increased aerobic fitness
- You have an oxygen reserve to pull on, meaning if you want to go faster you can.
- You can sustain it for much longer than interval/ high intensity efforts, but not as long as your easy and endurance runs.
- Tempo runs feel comfortable initially, however that same pace becomes more difficult as the run goes on.
- The duration at which you can spend in your tempo zone reflects that of your muscular conditioningand endurance. A recreational runner might start with 3 x 8 minute tempo’s whereas an established runner could achieve a 30 minute tempo (without it turning into a easy/endurance run).
Zone 4 ‘Threshold’ = increased capacity of aerobic performance
- Sustained for short periods of time with minimal oxygen reserve to pull on.
- When we improve our aerobic threshold, our aerobic performance in longer distances can improve dramatically.
- Apply short recovery or an active recovery, and gradually make the efforts more continuous.
ZONE 5 = VO2 Max Running = increased aerobic power
- Short and fast interval efforts of less than 3 minutes that require a stationary or gentle active recovery.
- The oxygen reserve is exhausted in effort to fuel the aerobic system.
- An acidic environment is created in your muscles and blood
- The pace is uncomfortable and fatigue sets in
ZONE 1 ‘Easy’ Running = Aids recovery
- Comfortable pace for warming up, cooling down or enjoying a recovery run.
- For the recreational runner this is sometimes a walk, or a run-walk ratio
- You shouldn’t get fatigued from this pace, and if you are, it’s likely you will benefit from a recovery walk, run-walk or you simply need more time to recover in between training sessions.