My MAF Experiment- Week 0

Format change!!!  I am embarking on a new training journey.  The blog is going to be my way to update you on my (fingers crossed) progress.  I will also have a section for a food highlight of the week, workout highlight of the week, and words of wisdom for the week.

My final race has wrapped up. It is time for the offseason. I finished up my running at a 6:50-7:00 per mile pace. Time to see what this new training model can do. Bring on the MAF experiment.

MAF Update:

This is a new journey I am going to start working on this off season.  MAF stands for Maximum Aerobic Function.  This is a process used to build and improve the aerobic system.  Runs are done under a certain heart rate in order to build fitness.  The benefits of this type of training are said to be better endurance, less injury, helping your body use fat as a fuel source, as well as a few others. 

My reason for attempting this shift is that I have battled injuries the past two summers.  I was able to race this summer, but couldn’t even run or bike the summer before that.  I have always subscribed to the “no pain, no gain” method of training.  It was not a good session if I was not completely spent at the end.  With MAF training, the runs should feel easier and be less taxing on my body. 

The problem with this is that my pace will take a very big hit at the beginning.  It will be VERY hard for me to shift my mindset and slow way down in order to get faster in the long run.  The having to go slow part is the reason I am starting right away after my final race instead of taking three months off to do other workouts.  I will be giving updates weekly on the blog, and possibly on a video.

Here is how to calculate the maximum heart rate to train at: (You can go up to 10 beats under this during the training)

  1.   Subtract your age from 180 (180 – age).
  2.   Modify this number by selecting a category below that best matches your health profile:

a.     If you have, or are recovering from, a major illness (heart disease, high blood pressure, any operation or hospital stay, etc.) or you are taking medication, subtract an additional 10.
b.     If you have not exercised before or have been training inconsistently or injured, have not recently progressed in training or competition, or if you get more than two colds or bouts of flu per year, or have allergies, subtract an additional 5.
c.     If you’ve been exercising regularly (at least four times weekly) for up to two years without any of the problems listed in a or b, keep the number (180 – age) the same.
d.    If you have been competing for more than two years duration without any of the problems listed above, and have improved in competition without injury, add 5.

For example, if you are 30 years old and fit into category b:
180 – 30 = 150, then 150 – 5 = 145.

Food Highlight:

We will start my highlights out with the food I eat the most, my breakfast mash.  We already did a blog post on that.  Just click here to read all about it.  It is a great way to start the day and help with the recovery process after the morning workout.

Workout Highlight:

My first “highlight” is going to be an explanation of my new direction for training.  I will not just be running slow for my workouts, but also following a “hybrid” athlete program.  I will be doing my runs after school (because, if done in the dark morning, I will not be able to see my heart rate monitor to follow MAF programing).  Then I will be doing my strength work in the morning.  In the past, I programed my own full body workouts.  Since I will be running in the afternoons, I don’t want to lift with my legs each day.  I am going to try to really focus my workouts to maximize my gains.  I will be doing two “push” days and two “pull” days as well as one leg day on Sundays when I can do my short run beforehand.  We will see how this goes.

Wisdom of the Week:

This comes straight from one of my favorites, Inky Johnson.

“Perspective drives performance.  How you VIEW what you do determines how you DO what you do.”  This is a great reminder to keep a positive mindset, even during something that seems less than great.  Focus on the fact that you “get to” do something rather than “have to” do something.  I “get to” go to school is a much better way to frame it than “have to” go to school.  Keeping that positive mindset will help drive you to a better day.

That’s just a bit of my experience.  Have a great week.

Please follow and like us:

Leave a Reply