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Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - BlackburnTony - 20-11-2013

Hi Ed (thanks for the log-on)
I turned 56 last June and to be honest I've had no structure since 1989 when at 32 I stopped being serious about running and ran just for enjoyment and to hold back obvious weight gain. At the time I stopped competing my best times were 5K 15:04, 10K 30:24, 10 mile 50:10, Half 1:07:10. all achieved that year.
Due to a driving ban in 2001 I had to start running to work regularly and as a result won the MV40 category at the Chester Half Marathon in 1:13:06.
Since then I've stopped and started again over and over, sometimes going months without an easy jog.
Now knowing that times against me I'd just love to compete against the better guys in my age group the current UK Ranked No1 for 10K in 2013 is a respectable 33:58
I stand at 47th (but should be 42nd after Sundays 37:16)
I've yet to complete one of the speed work sessions or infact get anywhere near it, I find them very very difficult, What do you think Ed?

Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - TheEd - 20-11-2013

Hi and welcome to the forums

very interesting .. and I think the programs will suit you a tremendous amount

even if your 10k time (more less currently) is sub 38, I would recommend training on the sub 40 minute 10k schedule -

so as to adapt to the rhythm of the program

what will suit you is the planned Off Period etc .. so we nip things in the bud before you land up on an enforced break which then makes starting over a little more hard .. planned breaks sustains the enthusiasm and the 'ease of use'

I understand that you going into winter your side, so the ability to do the 'speed sessions' may be a challenge

if you able to list your long-term goals and your short-term goals it will be great to whether we can balance things for you


Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - BlackburnTony - 20-11-2013

Thanks for the reply Ed, My short term goal is a 10K road race on the 29th December, this is really important to me as its back in the UK and organised by my club so after being away for so long I want to do as well as possible in the short time, usually as a field of around 1200 and 36 minutes will only get you a placing just inside the first 200 so half decent field. As a build up for this event I've entered an evening 5.5K Road Race here in Basel, Switzerland on Saturday 30th November and the option to race an 8K road race in France on the 8th December, I thought these shorter faster events might help. Longer term British Master 10 mile Championship next February is a possibility.

But I'll try the sub 40 and see how I go on, Thanks

Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - TheEd - 30-11-2013

How are things going with your training, are you making any progress on the schedule?


Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - BlackburnTony - 01-12-2013

Hi Ed, I reverted to the sub 40 schedule and due to a race and the training I'd done picked it up on Day 4 Rest Day, on Day 8 the 6x1K efforts I only managed 3 (3:41, 3:44, 3:41) Instead of Day 12 5K paced run I had Basel City Centre 5.5K Race last night to run on a bitterly cold night -2 Degrees C. Managed to put myself right at the front at the start mixed with M45, M50, M55 pace a bit too hot for me on the 1st Km as a group of around 10 pulled away and several passed me on the 1st/2nd Km, only on the second and final drag up over the Rhine Bridge did I manage to pull back one of the guys that past me in the 1st Km, then on the 2nd fast 800m straight down towards the line past 2 to finish in a disappointing 20:09, 32 seconds slower than 5 years ago. I did come 3rd from a field of 197 in the M55, winner ran 19:22 in our category someone have beaten several times at longer events over the last 5/6 years. Really didn't have the leg speed especially early in the race.. But I must admit I did virtually no warm-up to talk of due to the circumstances.
Maybe I'm better keeping off the track and reverting back to my old training methods of tuesday/thursday fartlek thrown in to my runs home from work.. This resulted in 32min 10K times back in 1987 prior to being coached

Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - TheEd - 02-12-2013

Hi BT, these programs work, however, you cannot run on 'old memory' .. with the programs you know where you stand and it has nothing to do with how one ran say 5 years ago

you have to nurture yourself back into a routine of what you can do NOW and not a few years ago

achieve the balance, where the body is able to absorb the training and benefit

good luck


Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - BlackburnTony - 22-12-2013

Hello Ed, I know your right, and I've stuck to the a schedule somewhere between Sub 40-35, and definitely feeling the benefit. Race 10K back in the UK week today, scheduled 5K timed run today and managed 17:56 alone on the track this morning, giving me a real boost 7 days prior to the event. Just need to keep the alcohol consumption down to a minimum over the festive period knowing I can let my hair down come New Years Eve.
Thanks for the encouragement..have a great Xmas/New Year, Tony

(unable to upload a 100x100 pixel picture of myself for Avatar..why's that?)

Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - TheEd - 23-12-2013

Hi Tony, I think the original settings were that one could only add the avatars attached to the forums, this dates back to quite a long time ago with forum moderation etc

Good to hear you making progress, as it is sometimes frustrating to when trying to get back to the shape of years gone by, however it can be done if one works on small improvements at first and then somehow it should all kick in once the body transforms itself

hope this makes sense


Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - BlackburnTony - 01-01-2014

Ran the Ribble Valley 10K last Sunday 29th December back in the UK... and I'm happy to report I won the Male Veterans over 55 category in 36:28, my best time for over 3 years, putting my M55 ranking up to 24th in the UK for 2013 So onwards and upwards, fingers crossed.
Overall came 129th from a field of 1087, first seven under 30minutes winner Jonny Mellor from Liverpool in a time of 29:12

Happy New Year

Am I now too Old for a sub 35 minute - TheEd - 02-01-2014

Congrats Tony .. be patient and nurture the speed slowly, while focusing on improving the aerobic side

don't look for too much speed but rather bring in the aerobic side before looking to run quicker, as an older athlete if you develop the aerobic you should be able to maintain the speed better

do ask questions for clarity