ATC 321: Core Conditioning After Kids, Nutrition and Pace Planning For Run Relays, and Periodizing for MTB Stage Races and Run PRs

November 20, 2020
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Maggie asks:

Mom of 4, Need help with core!

Hi guys, I recently started listening to your podcast the past couple weeks after I signed up for an Ironman 70.3.  I’ve always been fairly athletic but I’ve been busy with having babies and my career.  My kids are currently 10,8,4 and 2 and I had c sections with all of them.  I’ve always had pretty strong abs but I’m sure my core is pretty whacked after having kids.  After having to telework with my four kids at home during Covid, I decided I needed to do something for myself hence the jump into an Ironman.  My question is, what core exercises should I be doing to improve my running posture and swimming and how often?  After hearing Lawrence van Lingen on your podcast, I started following him and his exercises as well.  Thank you for any advice you may have!

What the coaches say:

Megan asks:

Training for SoCal Ragnar (fingers crossed it happens!)

Hi endurance planet!

I hope the fall is treating you all well! Quick ATC questions…pending Ragnar Socal 2021 occurs…what the best way to train? The leg(s) I’m expecting are 20-21 miles in total broken up into 3 runs. 34 (almost 35yo Female). Stats are basic: marathon times 3-3:10, half around 1:30, 5k 19ish, 4miler (my stronger of the short runs) around 24. I’m used to running doubles most days and peaked my MAF run volumes this fall for constant 70-80+ mile easy run weeks (rescued a Siberian husky to help!). I’m not deloading from the volume with the hopes of putting together a strong build to April 9. Suggestions? Course specific work? I live in the Cincinnati/Northern KY area – we have a lot of bridges and some hills but not anything gnarly like Colorado. Last piece is fueling- to be honest Im really fat adapted and have run several marathons 3:00-3:10 on just water and grit to finish. I can appreciate in a race like this I might benefit from a fueling strategy. I do have a jar of unopened UCAN (lol).

What the coaches say:

  • Our 2015 Ragnar Recap episode (link below) goes into detail on training, nutrition, race plan/pacing and more!
  • Fat adaptation is not a reason to not fuel for these events. Fueling benefits performance.
  • Eat the biggest portion of your food right after the run.
  • Keep hydrated.
  • Enjoy the experience!
  • Training wise: You don’t have to change anything.
  • A good 10k training program would be perfect; it would address volume and speed.
  • You might want to lean towards dropping volume and mixing in different types of intensity until ~10 weeks out.
  • The racecourse is not flat.
  • In the final 8 weeks before, brush up on steep downhill training.
  • Bring enough warm clothes.

Michael asks:

How to improve as a cyclist…. from running?

I’m a longtime fan of the show. I’ve adapted my training/racing countless times from new information and ideas discussed on the podcast. Thank you! For 2021, my focus will be racing mountain bikes with the goal “A” race being the Breck Epic Stage Race, which features six days of racing over a total of 240 miles and 40,000 feet of climbing. I’ll have several other “B” and “C” races including gravel, cyclocross, and mountain bike, but I’d also like to be able to hop into some local trail running races (mostly 10Ks). Question… How, when, and what type of runs can I incorporate into my cycling specific training plan that keeps me competitive in shorter trail runs and also benefits my overall cycling progression? My Breck Epic preparation will follow a model of Prep, Base 1-3, Build 1-2, Peak.

In general…
Mondays:  Aerobic Endurance, Weights
Tuesdays: OFF or recovery
Wednesdays: Muscular Force, Weights
Thursdays: Aerobic Endurance
Fridays: Muscular Endurance, Weights
Saturdays: OFF (family duties)
Sundays: Long Aerobic Endurance with some Race Pace
Which days of the week could I add some running? Should the runs be bricks or keep them seperate? What type of runs (hill repeats, track intervals, tempo, etc.) would have the most direct benefit to mountain biking? Do I need to reduce the running during the Build phases prior to the Breck Epic? PS I have nearly 15 years of endurance training and racing including everything from Ironman, 100-mile ultramarathons, and 200-mile bike races. Looking forward to hearing your expertise.

What the coaches say:

  • For now, your run intensity should match your bike intensity to exploit the most out of your base training.
  • 3 weight sessions a week is plenty of intensity.
  • In the prep phase, you should do easy running.
  • Tuesday could be an easy 3-mile run.
  • On Monday you could add a run before the bike (always put the run before the bike).
  • During Build 1, 2, and Peak, the running needs to shift.
  • You have a ton of time. Don’t extend the Base 1-3 out to 10 weeks each. Skew towards Base 1 or 2.
  • Thursday or Monday could be your long run day (e.g., steep hill repeats and tempos).
  • Running doesn’t directly help you be a better cyclist.
  • Weight training should include periodization as well.
  • Christopher Kelly took an all MAF approach for the BC Bike Race.
  • Have benchmarks for yourself.
  • Take a 10k program (the quality days) and mesh it into your training.
  • If you have to compromise a session, have it be your weights.
  • Do a double periodization since you have so much time.

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