Reverse linear periodization is a method of training that gradually and progressively increases the volume and decreases the intensity over time. It is the opposite of the traditional linear periodization. Historically, linear periodization was designed to improve strength, speed, and power, with training progressing from general conditioning (volume) to specific skills (intensity), with the […]

Parts and Process

    It had been a week since Laura and I had spoken. I could tell she had been thinking about what we talked about. We were sitting in the bleachers at the track. She had just finished her workout, and the late day sun was casting an orange glow on the bleacher steps. “You […]


Periodization is a blueprint of sequential periods of focused training that guides the coach and runner in the acquisition of specific characteristics of fitness. Training periods are divided into macrocycles, mesocycles, and microcycles. Several ways to periodize your training: 1) Linear Periodization Progressing from high volume/low intensity to low volume/high intensity.   2) Reverse Linear […]


  On your first day at altitude, you go for a run, and notice within a few steps that you’re breathing heavier than usual. You wonder why, because the air still contains 20.93% oxygen, whether you’re at the Dead Sea in Israel (1,385 feet below sea level) or on top of Mount Everest in Nepal (29,029 […]


  Your maximum speed for a given duration can be determined using your maximum aerobic speed (your VO₂max pace) and your maximum anaerobic speed (the fastest speed you can run for 8 steps, or about 3 seconds). Max Race Speed = Max Aerobic Speed + (Max Anaerobic Speed – Max Aerobic Speed) Your Max Anaerobic […]

Two Doses, Not One

  Wonder why there are two doses of the COVID vaccine, separated by a few weeks? One shot in the arm would make it a lot easier, right? It’s Hans Selye’s fault. What happens if you give a mouse a toxic dose of a drug? That was the question posed by Hungarian endocrinologist Dr. Hans […]

You Look Like You’re Faster Than That

    “You look like you’re faster than that.” It was both a compliment and an insult at the same time. It was the summer of 1994, I was 21 years old, and living in Boston for an internship with the Boston Athletic Association—the event management team and host of the Boston Marathon. Every Saturday […]

Current Pace vs. Goal Pace

  I once coached a runner who ran a 19-minute 5K who told me she wanted to be trained like a 17:30 5K runner. So, I told her to run a 17:30 5K and then I’ll train her like a 17:30 5K runner. It seems logical that if you want to run a race faster, […]

Confusion vs. Habituation

  If you ever were taught how to play an instrument, did you learn how to play simple pieces before learning more complex pieces? Did your music teacher constantly change the piece and complexity of the music that you practiced, or did he or she have you practice the same piece of music until you […]

Tips for The Spectacled Runner

  Picture found at Pixabay – License CC0 I’m lucky that I never have had to wear glasses. Being able to see where you’re going when you run is pretty important. If you wear glasses, that means having to run while wearing them, which can be a bit tricky and even inconvenient. Treat Your Lenses […]
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