Training

"And there were questions: What did he eat? Did he believe in isometrics? Isotonics? Ice and heat? How about aerobics, est, ESP, STP? What did he have to say about yoga and yogurt? What was his pulse rate, his blood pressure, his time for 100-yard dash? What was the secret, they wanted to know; in a thousand different ways they wanted to know The Secret. And not one of them was prepared, truly prepared to believe that it had not so much to do with chemicals and zippy mental tricks as with that most unprofound and sometimes heart-rending process of removing, molecule by molecule, the very tough rubber that comprised the bottoms of his training shoes."

There are four elements to a good season's running:

  • Steady running to get you strong.
  • Hard Sessions (long reps / hills / track) to get you fast.
  • Racing to teach you how to use what you gain.
  • Rest. Muscles just can't repair and grow properly otherwise - in the long term, fatigue can ensue.

Schedule

There is a detailed schedule sent out the mailling list each week, and available here in addition. You can add it to your Google calendar!

Route Maps

We have a variety of route maps available.

Training Camp

The club's training camp, held immediately prior to Michaelmas term, is an excellent way to get to know your fellow club members in ways that you may sometimes later regret. A perfect reintroduction to running before Varsity term.

Training Articles

Current OUCCC coach Peter Thompson has produced articles on training for Athletics Weekly, some of which are available from this page:
Recovery | Interval Training
(These articles were originally published in Athletics Weekly magazine and are reproduced here with permission)

During the Vacations

A former OUCCC webgimp shares his thoughts on training during the vacations:

Come the vacation, some of us have a long break away from Uni and Uni running. You may be looking forward to reunions with friends from home, holidays and having a TV that's not black and white. However at the back of your mind may be a question: "How am I going to keep my hard earned race fitness over such a period of well-deserved sitting on my arse?"

Apart from all the training that no doubt our captains will be telling us to do, the hols are a great chance to do some local races. If, like me, you do not run for a club at home, local races are a novelty. In my area there is a collection of small-scale races run by even smaller-scale clubs that constitute a "running scene". This little publicised and (if you ask me) vaguely seedy counter-culture is hard to get into for the first time "guest" runner. Here are some tips from my limited experience.

1. Go to the newsagent and while pretending to look at porn, furtively pick out a copy of "Runner's World".

2. Look at the "classified" section for an upcoming race in your area. They sometimes have dodgy name such as the "Tameside Torture Run" or the "Eccles Toughie". Don't worry, you don't have to be a tough guy to compete.

3. Following the completely inadequate markers, you might get lost. If this is the case just follow other likely runners. These can be distinguished from non-running locals by their acres of Ronhill lycra, silly woolly hats, and flourescent clothing.

4. Lining up at the start you get a chance to survey the competition. Most of the other runners are likely to be "vets". These guys are about the same age as your parents or even your grandparents. They will be passing round the vaseline to rub on their nipples and privates to "prevent chafing". "This is going to be easy" you think to yourself....

5. By the end of the first lap, you realise that all the balding dads are sado-masochists getting up at four every morning to train. In addition to the personal embarassment of being beaten by forty-somethings, there are other joys. You might get elbowed to the ground by the overly-lairy, tattooed boxer/bouncer who runs these races to maintain his fighting fitness (it has happened to me).

6. At the end of the race, you might find yourself being invited to the pub for a friendly "drink". Beware of strangers: they are covert club recruiters. Whatever you do, don't give them your telephone number. Before you know it your new club will be ringing you every weekend to see if you can run for them. Stay loyal to the OUCCC! In all seriousness, local races are a great way to stay sharp, and are a good day out. You will feel all the better for yourself when you sit down to watch that Simpsons triple-bill.

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