Slowing Down on Sundays

One of the things I’ve always found difficult is moderating my pace and effort on Sunday long runs.

The cornerstone of the Running Room marathon training program is the Long Slow Distance run on Sundays – the much talked about LSD. I’ve got the long distance part of that down. The slow part is where I often slip up.

Less stress, fewer injuries

Running Room founder John Stanton says the Long Slow Distance run adapts the runner’s fitness to exercising for an extended period of time. By keeping things slow on Sundays, and increasing mileage no more than about 10% each week, the stress on the runner’s body is decreased, along with the chance of injury.

A Sunday long slow distance run at 5:35/km (continuous) is good compared to the usual 5:00/km I've done in the past. So is the average heart rate of just 134bpm.

A Sunday long slow distance run at 5:35/km (continuous) is good compared to the usual 5:00/km I’ve done in the past. So is the average heart rate of just 134bpm.

I’ve always run a bit too fast on Sundays right from when I started running half marathons. I found it more enjoyable to push myself a bit over the longer distances and mentally, I figured it made more sense to run these a bit closer to marathon race pace than the Running Room program suggests.

Slowing down, on purpose

This year I’m trying something a bit different. I’m slowing down a bit on Sunday and keeping my heart rate in the recommended endurance range thanks to the addition of the Mio heart rate monitor that I can comfortably wear even on the longer runs. That means no huffing and puffing and a comfortable pace that isn’t stressing my body over the longer distances.

I’ve been marginally successful in keeping to that plan so far. A couple of Sundays I’ve found myself running a bit too fast still, but overall my Sunday pace is down.

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