Interval Training – Anaerobic Session

Following on from our article on anaerobic training, below is great session for boosting your anaerobic capacity. For a 5K race, about 20% of your energy will come from your anaerobic system – so don’t neglect it. In every ‘hard effort’ training session you do you will be hitting your anaerobic system, so you only need to do anaerobic specific sessions like this once every couple of weeks.

They key to achieving pure anaerobic training is long recoveries. Long recoveries allow you to go as close to max speed for each of the reps as possible and to better isolate the anaerobic system – with a long recovery your aerobic system fully winds down and takes longer to kick in again on the next rep, thus meaning your anaerobic system takes more of the load.

The session is simple. Run each one minute rep at almost flat out pace. The last quarter of the rep should feel like very hard work. Recovery is a guide – your heart rate and breathing should be completely back to normal, but don’t allow yourself to cool down too much. The strides are short sharp sprints. The last 3-4 seconds of each stride should be flat out. The purpose of strides is to activate all of your muscle fibers so they are ready for the high effort reps to follow.

15 min warm up

6 x 8-10 sec strides

12 x 1 min fast [2-3 min recovery]

15 min warm down

The 1 min can be replaced with 300m – 400m track reps. The distance should be roughly 1 minute of effort.