Adventures in Running with Maurine

August MAF Tests and Training Thoughts

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I’ve been putting off my MAF test for the month for a week or so because I was afraid to see the results.  Lately – whenever I have tried to run it seems like my heart rate exceeds my 126 maximum too quickly.  This has led to some frustration and stinkin’ thinkin’.

This morning, after delaying getting out of bed for nearly an hour, I decided to head over to the track and see what the results really were instead of stressing myself out over them.  With no further wordiness – here are my three months of results. (Note: in the future I will probably only list a maximum of four months, month 1 and the last three months).

June 2015 July 2015 August 2015
Mile 1 15:09 14:06 13:43
Mile 2 15:45 14:20 13:48
Mile 3 15:08 14:09 13:46
Mile 4 15:36 14:27 14:01

Conclusion: I am still improving, just not as fast as I want or as much as I had hoped based on the previous test.

What I did different this month:

  • A few of my long runs I did not wear the heart rate monitor and hoped that my run/walk intervals kept my heart rate below my maximum.  Some days I yell at my watch when it starts going off a lot and just didn’t want to deal with it.  Odds are – I went anaerobic and this may have had an impact on my improvement.
  • A few of my “easy walks” I also did not wear a heart rate monitor.

I’ve been reading another book by Dr. Phil Maffetone – The Endurance Handbook – and listening to several podcasts in which he is interviewed and think that I need to go back to focusing on the heart rate training on all runs and/or walks.

Experiments to try:

  • I am going to lower my maximum heart rate to 123 instead of 126 until my next test on September 14 to see what that will do.  Reasoning:  The three years of injury that provided constant setbacks may take longer to overcome than planned based on my age and fitness level.
  • Do my two “focused” runs of the week on the track to allow myself to run more consistently without having to insert walk breaks. Again – this will just be until my next MAF test.

This last weekend I did a loop on the Wasatch Crest with Leslie and Harold Peterson. I also did an out and back on Dimple Dell Parkway.  These two adventures reminded me of two things:  Nature strengthens me and also refreshes my soul.  I need to get on trail more often.  It also pointed out to me that I can do vertical under this training plan.  While my speed is still slow, my endurance and fitness were much better than I thought and I was able to walk slowly (SLOW being the operative word) up hills and still stay in my aerobic training zone.  I’ve been avoiding vertical for that reason – but no more.  Just nothing ridiculous like peak bagging.

Hopefully now that I got this test out of the way I will quit stressing myself out over nothing and get back to enjoying my training and progress.


One thought on “August MAF Tests and Training Thoughts

  1. Sounds to me lie you’re doing pretty darned well. Hang in there, girl!


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