@ellotheth @gshotts @KorbenDallas
Actually, the BarryP plan IS meant to someone who is new to running.
It worked like magic for me, despite having hypermobile joints, which means weaker than average tendons, ligaments (and even bones)…and the history of overuse injuries from sports so typical of us bendy folk.
NB There are a few big caveats to BarryP:
- your pace must be ‘so slow it’s stupid’ (his phrasing). Essentially a recovery jog pace.
- always put one of the 3 short runs between the 2 medium and 1 long run. In other words, allow your body to recover between harder efforts.
- it takes patience - you see results in months, not weeks.
My example (YMMV)
On 3x per week of running, with decent bike fitness and normal weight (40s female, 130lb, 165cm), I could never get beyond 30km/week without an injury, and many were significant: chronic achilles tendonitis and tibia stress fracture being the most notable.
WHAT PROMPTED THE SWITCH
while doing a very easy ‘return to running’ program (after my upteenth injury break) that had me run-walking 5x/week I found it enjoyable, but when I switched to running 2-3x/week I felt like crap.
At the time I had no goal aside from being able to run multiple times a week without injury.
- week of Oct 14 2019 running 10min short runs, 20 min mediums, and a 30 min long for a grand total of 60 min of running/week.
- On Oct 19 I ran the 30min long run at 6:30/km pace, avg HR 163.
(to determine starting volume, you take avg of previous 4 weeks of running. I found it easier to run by time rather than distance).
5 MONTHS LATER
- Feb 3 2020: running 30min short runs, 60 min mediums, and a 90 min long, or just over 5 hours a week, about 50km.
- This well-surpassed my previous record of 33km/week, WITHOUT ANY INJURIES.
My SHORT run was now 30 min, 6:12km/min pace, avg HR 151.
In my case, the big win was being able to handle the volume without any injuries. The bonus was having runs get slightly faster for less effort. But if you google ‘BarryP run plan’ you’ll find plenty of more robust folks who see considerably higher performance gains.
During my BarryP experiment, running was going so well that I had registered for the Paris half marathon on March 1. I had only ever run a half-marathon once before, in 2007, and I had to walk the final 3 km due to knee pain (finished in 2h20).
To prepare for the distance (I was aiming for 2hrs), in Feb every other week the long run was an ‘ultra-long’. Normally with BarryP, the long run shouldn’t be more than 3x your short run.
So on Feb 16 ran my final ultra long of 20km, 6:13/km pace, 162 avg HR.
That remains my longest run ever, since the Paris half-marathon, like everything else, got cancelled cuz of Covid. Including running outside (France had some crazy law restricting us to a 1km radius of home).
Since then I haven’t returned to running because Life Happened. However, Life has since settled and I’ve been hankering to return to running so now I’m kinda psyched…