Q: Races are all marathon length. Specific question is: should I adjust my intervals the week before and after a race? Should I be doing Level 4 intervals the week before a race? If I had a race and don’t have another for 2 weeks, how should I adjust my intervals the week after a race? Should I do Level 4 intervals the week after a hard race?
A: Most of the time while we are in season, we are trying to manage our efforts and keep the body in a state of high work capacity. In the case of the back to back marathons, we can adjust the in week intervals to either a Level 3 intensity or a slight mix of both. When coming off a marathon, our body is most likely still in a state of recovery a few days later. Be aware of your recovery feeling going into the days with intervals and don’t be afraid to adjust to a lower intensity or even move the session to a day later. We still want to include some intensity in the week of the following race as we don’t want the body to lose the spark and high end feeling going into the next race.
In the case of having two weeks after the marathon, I would say you should back off on the Level 4 for the first week if you are in fact coming out of a 2 week block of marathons. Allow yourself to recover fully from those events and prep yourself for the later races or possibly goal race later in the season. For that goal race, the most important part is keeping things easy, getting energy levels high and doing a few short hard workouts to again get the body ready for the top end work that you will be doing.
Hopefully this helps and good luck with training going forward.
CXC Team Head Coach