i’m 17. so i shouldn’t worry about it too much then right.
right before i turned 16 i was convinced higher mileage was the way to go (our best cross country runner was doing high mileage and i wanted to be as good as him), i ramped up from 30-50mpw i was doing before to 70ish. i got some good performances in the mile-2mile and thought this training was the best way to train. the only supplemental training i did was some body weight exercises and swimming, the rest was mileage and workouts. throughout cross country i was holding 70-80mpw and i started running some good times but i wore out as the season went on. I thought i just wasn’t training hard enough so over the winter (about exactly a year ago) I ramped up to 90-100mpw (split up into 13 sessions). I have a very high work capacity so i’m able to handle mileage without injury but finally after a couple months this volume took it’s toll and i injured my achilles and shortly after my knee and lost alot of training time.
after my injuries healed i realized just how stupid my training was. though my longer distance times had improved (in the midst of heavy training i had run a 1:16:22 half marathon), my short distance speed had barely improved from the year before. I would be severely limiting my potential if I continued to stagnate at the shorter distances. that’s why i made the decision to switch to the program i’m doing now which utilizes my high work capacity and will also develop my short and middle distance times to their maximum potential before moving up to the longer distances.
an example week from my high mileage days:
Mon: AM 6mi PM 6mi w/ strides
Tue: AM 5mi PM 10mi w/ 7x(3′ hard, 2′ easy)
Wed: AM 7mi PM 7mi moderate
Thu: AM 5mi w/ strides PM 10mile progression run
Fri: AM 6mi PM 7mi moderate
Sat: AM 9mi incl. 8x200m hill reps PM 5mi
Sun: AM 14 mile long run
week total: 97 miles
as you can probably guess, i didn’t have alot of muscle mass 🙂
as to if I feel faster or slower now; I definately feel better. I’m almost positive i can set a PR in any race up till 2 miles, but i don’t think I can still run 1:16:22 for a half marathon because i’m doing alot less volume. My speed is has had a much needed improvement and I feel fresher and throughout my workouts. The speed workouts I’m doing now are ALOT faster than a year ago. I feel more like an athlete and less like a marathoner.