Build Phase

Training during the Build Phase (which I’m in now) should start to become more like the event that you are training for. During the Base Phase, I spent lots of time in heart rate zones 1 & 2. Now, my workouts take place in zones 2, 3 & even sometimes in 4 & 5 during interval work. Here are my HR zones for running:

Zone 1 (Recovery) = 60-73% of max HR (134-153 bpm)

Zone 2 (Endurance) = 74-81% (154-162)

Zone 3 (Tempo) = 82-84% (163-168)

Zone 4 (Threshold) = 85-93% (169-180)

Zone 5 (Anaerobic Max) = 94-95% (181-183)

Zone 6 (Full Capacity) = 96-100% (184-189)

During my Base Phase runs, I would watch my HR monitor closely to make sure I was never above 162 bpm. If it was getting too high, I would slow back down to lower my heart rate. How that I’m in the Build Phase, I keep an eye on my HR, but my runs now involve focusing on my speed/tempo rather than HR. See my workout report from this morning’s run for an example.



1 mile repeats with 3 minutes rest in between
Warm-up (ran to the track) – 1.37 miles in 10:08 (Avg HR = 144) 7:23 min/mile pace
1) 6:39 (160)
2) 6:47 (162)
3) 6:46 (164)
4) 6:40 (167)
Cool-down – 1.37 miles in 10:10 (161) 7:25 min/mile pace
Total Workout: 6.74 miles in 1:02:20
I felt pretty good during these intervals. My average HR during each interval is a little misleading because during my recovery between each, my HR had time to drop back down to near resting…then it takes about 400m before it gets back into the threshold (zone 4) range, causing the average to be lower.


5 minute warm-up with some drills
1/2 mile (888 yd) at race pace done in 16:01
Total workout: 1104 yd in 21:15 (34:49 min/mile pace)



6.67 miles in 51:17 (7:41 min/mile pace)
Avg HR = 163 bpm
Max HR = 177 bpm
This was an out-and-back run. The first half (out) was done in 24:33 (7:22 pace), the second half (back) was done in 26:44 (8:00 pace). This is quite a significant difference. I was watching my HR during the run and noticed that during the first half, it was hanging out around 158-164 (zone 2-3). Then on the way back, it started to climb and stayed in the 168-172 range (zone 4). This range is tough to maintain for very long periods of time, thus the reason my speed slowed so much on the way back. This was a good little test of my threshold pace. I think the temperature may have been a factor also…as it was already 82F when I ran at 5:20am!!


5 minute warm-up with some drills
20 minutes of swimming at race pace with a few 48 yd (1 lap) speed intervals mixed in
Total Workout: 1296 yd in 25:33 (34:41 min/mile pace)

2 Responses to “Build Phase”

  1. The life of a Triathlete June 23, 2010 at 7:34 PM #

    How often do you re-check your Heart rate Training zones?

  2. Luke Powell June 27, 2010 at 3:12 PM #

    Not often enough. Usually just twice a year. Once at the beginning of the season and then again somewhere in the middle. I should probably do it every few months to make sure that I’m training in the proper zones.

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