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Old 09-21-2007, 09:51 AM   #4
Alex Europa
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Waialua  HI
Posts: 1,016
Re: Running frequency & Duration with CF

I've been doing CrossFit for about 5 months now and have made amazing gains in almost all areas of fitness. My only real concern I had was maintaining the propers endurance to race upwards to 10K - 10 miles as well as triathlons (only up to Olympic distance). IN MY OPINION, this is another important aspect of fitness. Granted, training for longer distance does promote muscle loss, but TO ME it's a trade off I'm willing to make - and Crossfit provides a great balance to really avoid it. I've managed to still put on muscle and get SIGNIFICANTLY stronger mixing 8-10 hours/week of endurance training with the standard WOD's.
To me, the most important thing about the endurance training is to mix it up. LSD definately has it's place, but generally, every endurance workout should have a purpose. For example, say I run a 10-mile distance run, I will do something like 2 miles warmup, 2 miles at 1/2 marathon pace, 2 miles recovery/steady, 2 miles at 1/2 marathon pace, 2 miles recovery/steady. There are also other running workouts (4-8 miles total distance) that are important to endurance development (ie: Tempo, fartlek, etc...) that should be done regularly. The only workouts I don't typically do are intervals, because of the 400s/800s we do for the WODs. If we haven't done any of them in awhile, I'll generally sub an interval workout in place of a tempo run.

Anyways, I workout 2x per day: in the morning I do endurance training (swim/bike/run), then after work I do the WOD. I follow the WOD 3/1 and on the 1st rest day I double up the endurance (run or bike in the morning and swim in the evening). On the 2nd off day (ie: day #8), I take a full rest day.

I don't get enough sleep in this schedule, but my work days are 13-15 hours - 4on/2off. But for anyone that works a somewhat normal job, this is a fairly easy schedule to accomplish. And the WODs really do a good job of keeping me motivated and fresh (mentally NOT physically).

Doing 15 mpw with CrossFit is easy enough, I would do 4 runs (6-miler and 3 3-milers). But in keeping the the broad fitness approach of CrossFit, you may want to consider mixing up your endurance training to more of a triathlon type approach and figuring your weekly volume in hours. Either way...good luck and remember that fitness is an experiment of one - find what works for YOU.

- Alex
CrossFit Barbarian Fitness / Flickr
"Every man dies. Not every man truly lives."
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