Summer Shred Program
High School Runners go to the Running 2 Win website and start a free account. This is the free app we will use to log our workouts. There is also a mobile app so you can use your phone. Keeping a log is important not only for you but for accountability specific to earning a letter. Middle school runners will need to do this with a parent as it does need an email address. I would encourage all athletes to do this with a parent so they can see your progress and hard work as well. The mobile app costs .99, the computer log is free.
Welcome to the summer shred training page
The number one thing high school and junior high runners can do during the summer is to get some volume running. It’s not as important to do intervals or repeats during the summer, you just want to get the mileage in. Think of this phase as pouring the foundation for your home. The stronger and larger you can build your foundation, the more resilient and sturdy your house will ultimately be. If your foundation is weak or has cracks, you’re in for a difficult time down the road. So, take the time now to ensure you have the proper foundation.
The training plan for summer is mostly easy aerobic runs—lots of miles at a conversational pace and a continuous bout of the most important thing for injury prevention…strength training. We will focus on functional strength work using mostly body weight and a few simple kettlebell movements. As we begin regular season in August we will add some hills and intervals. A freshman coming in should start with about 20 or 25 miles per week and build from that. Adding 5 miles per week/per year is about right, so top-notch seniors could be averaging 40 to 50 miles per week at the most. Junior high athletes should cut all of the running exercises listed in half and should be training 10-12 miles a week to start. Build from there to no more than 25 miles a week.
The most important run in the plan is that solid, aerobic long run, currently scheduled for Tuesdays. It’s long, slow and steady. Our goal with this run is that it will eventually last one-and-a-half to two hours. The longest it should be is two hours or 15 miles, whichever comes first, again middle school half of that. We will be building to that so we get there by first week in August.
You’ll also see grass strides early in the program. Barefoot strides are a great addition to any training plan, because the secondary muscle groups in your legs—the ones that keep you balanced and upright—have to fire. Your grass runs will be slower. But they’ll help strengthen the supportive tissue in your legs and hips.
Prioritize your life around your rest. Getting sufficient sleep—8 to 9 hours per night—is hugely important when you’re running a lot of miles. It’s even more important for middle school and high school athletes, who are still growing. Whatever else you get done during the day is great, but you need that recovery.
Set some goals around nutrition improvement as well. A great start for most people would be to give up soda, cold cereal for breakfast and junk food snacks. Start adding some fresh raw foods to your diet. Green smoothies are a nice way to add highly nutritious greens to your diet without feeling like a rabbit. Organic, free-range eggs are an excellent food and all of the most recent research dispute the myth of eggs being tied to high cholesterol and heart disease. Finally fats are good but not all fats are equal. Dump the trash fats like most pre-packaged meals, canola oils, Crisco ect. Add high quality fats like avocado, almonds, butter from grassfed cows, cook with lard, tallow, butter and coconut oil. These are not things to do just to become a better runner but to have overall better health for you and your family. Poor food choices and adherence to the standard American diet (S.A.D.) is the primary cause of most of the chronic health situations we have in America today.
Be consistent. There are a lot of distractions in the summer, so have a dedicated time to train. Meet with your team, find an accountability partner to keep yourself accountable to your goals.
Stay hydrated during your runs. During your long runs of 45-minute or longer, you want to take on calories. They will help you recover faster for your next workout.
A few weeks before the start of the season, go out and race a 5k, we have the Lincoln County Fair 5k on the schedule. It will really help boost your confidence. It’s also good to practice your race day routine, practice your warm-up, and test your pre-race nutrition and also see where your threshold pace is. That is important information to help me taylor workouts for you.
Look at the pace you hit as a barometer of your lactate threshold level. When the season comes, you’ll do shorter training intervals at a pace slightly faster than that.
Get a baseline of your resting heart rate early in the season. Doing it is simple: Just take your pulse early in the day, before working out, when you’re at rest. I take mine when I first wake up. Monitor yourself throughout the season by taking your pulse at the same time of day. If your resting heart rate increases by five to 10 beats a minute, you’re over-training and need a day off. Other signs of over-training include not sleeping well, feeling irritable, loss of appetite.
The goals here are to develop a lifetime lifestyle of health and fitness, for you to run well and be set up to continue running well in the future. To set you up for racing fast and having a future in running, I personally think that avoiding extremes are most important. These early years are best for building a base of support to work off of in the future. That means a bunch of aerobic development obviously, but that is not all. That’s generally all people think about when they hear the words “build a base,” but we are also looking at building a base for the other aspects of running. That means building a base of pure speed/neuromuscular development. It means developing good strength and a functional stride. When I think avoiding extremes that means doing aerobic work, and some pure speed/mechanical work. Of course, some of the good old hard intervals in the middle are needed at the start of regular season, but not nearly as many as you see in track programs and not in summer for junior high and high school athletes. I believe you need smaller spices of this work and in shorter segments. That’s why it is good for a middle school and high school kid to go long periods of time (the summer for example) of doing nothing but mileage, strides, and tempo runs. Speed workouts such as intervals and ladders should be kept until regular season.
Evening runs, bike rides, or even walks can help flush out metabolic waste and free radicals left over from a hard morning session. Cold baths are also a good idea, especially after a hard or long session. The water should be around 50 to 55 degrees—cool, but not cold. Try that for 10 to 15 minutes. Another good idea is to prop up your legs, like you see in the “Legs Up the Wall” yoga pose, to help lactate and waste drain out.