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Training tips for a trail Half Marathon for an experienced roadie

Joined: 19 May 2010
Posts: 1
Massachusetts, United States
Posted: Wed 19 May 2010 08:49 pm GMT   topTop
Hi all. I'm veteran a veteran roadie who has really gotten into a trail racing in the last year and a half. Just to give you some basic background, I have marathon/half-marathon PRs of 2:53/1:19 and suspect that I'm currently in about 1:22-1:23 HM shape. In the past, I've done a range of trail races from 5K up to a 35K (Woodside 35K), but have never really trained specifically for them. My training has been some base, but longish trail runs incorporated into a half-marathon/marathon training schedule. Also, most of my trail races have been "off-season" or training runs before a marathon to get in a work-out without beating up my legs.

I'm currently targeting a race in early July (http://www.pctrailruns.com/Pacifica_Smmr.htm) and would love to get some training tips on how to best prepare for this race. I live in the Boston area, so there are accessible trails, but none with the long climbs I'll see out west. Specifically, should I be doing some tempo work on the trails, and how much? Is there a place for long hill intervals on the road? How about long runs on trails? I realize I'm trying to fit my road racing training paradigm to the trails, but any tips would be much appreciated.
Joined: 22 Apr 2010
Posts: 2
Florida, United States
Posted: Fri 21 May 2010 11:52 pm GMT   topTop
Hey there! Awesome road PRs! I agree, trail running is fantastic!

Like you, I had some trails available, but I live in flat-FL! Ideally, it would be great to train on the terrain in which you'd be racing, but that's not always possible! I ran a trail half that was very hilly this winter. I didn't really know how to prepare for it, but wanted to at least keep my cardio up & get my body nice & strong...

This is what I did (take it or leave it!) & what I learned should be done:
-Continue road-running as a cardio benefit, the way you'd train for any other half
-Use to stair-stepper machine a few times each week &/or do stadiums/do stair workouts
-You can also use the incline on other cross-training machines for cardio & leg-strengthening exercises
-Weight train: squats, lunges, leg extensions, etc.
-Do core work for stability on the trails
-Visit the trails around you & workout on those in the shoes you will race in (if it's similar?)

hmm...& to try to answer your questions:
-Not sure about tempo work; I think any tempo work would be beneficial
-Are there bridges &/or overpasses with inclines/hills you can run for hills? ...even intervals on cross-training machines would help!
-Again, any long runs will be helpful

Hope this helps! Have fun & good luck :)