Threshold-above and below

Hi Marius,

Just wanted to ask a general question on threshold. (Your 100 day plan is great btw:))

"My question is:

With regards to threshold is the best way to improve it (down to 3min per km for example) by gradually running more threshold sessions in the week at a heart rate of 80-87% of max with variations of sessions long and short like in your plan but kept under the 87% of my max heart rate.


Run the sessions just below and above my threshold heart rate with great variations of length e.g 45/15 or 3min level 3, 1mins level 4...repeat etc.

Hope you understand what i mean.
What would be the main benefit of just below and just above threshold? Does it bring your level 3 pace up to your level 4 pace? Then your level 4 pace becomes faster etc.


Answer: Hi Paul and thanks for your question.

Personally I like to stay right in the low zone of the threshold (80-87%), and do the variation in that area. However, on SOME sessions you can play around and stay up and around the threshold for most of the sessions.

As an example of the first (readers, I'm getting technical here - it is just as I know this user knows what I'm taking about) would be running from a lactate level of 2.0 up to about 3.1-3.2 where I go gradually up there midway in the session and maybe stay the last half from 2.7 to 3.1-3.2.

The other model would be going right up to as close as 3.0 and then staying most from 2.8 til 3.2 in lactate.

Around 70-80 % should be model 1 and about 20-30 % model 2 in my opinion - for optimal results.

I could go into the mechanisms for this, but it would be too long to explain.

In terms of general variation - just vary the length like you do (45/15, longer etc.) and with time you'll see your performance improve. Total sessions of threshold a week ? Follow the structure of the 100 day plan and you're about right.

I wish you all the best,

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