BRAD BROWN: Annchen Clarke back with us here on The Kona Edge. We’re going to talk about the Ironman run today. Out of the three disciplines, Annchen, when you first started, running was your strong point. It probably still is out of the three disciplines, your strongest.
You come from a running background, particularly middle distance, 800m, 1500m, do you think that’s played a massive part in your strength as a runner?
ANNCHEN CLARKE: Definitely, I love running. I can be running every day. For me it’s like a meditation set. What I’ve learnt from Raynard is the only way to run faster, is to run faster,
I think very often people think with endurance racing that you just have to put in the long slow miles. With Raynard’s training you actually would do your long Ironman run training sessions on the track. I love track sessions. Coming from a 800m, 1500m background, it’s my absolute favourite.
The danger of junk miles in your Ironman run training
BRAD BROWN: Let’s talk about some of those sessions and working where you’re doing quality as opposed to quantity. I think that’s a big mistake that a lot of people make, they just go out and do junk miles. They do big miles just for the sake of doing big miles. Talk us through a typical track session with Raynard Tissink?
ANNCHEN CLARKE: You’ll have your shorter track sessions midweek, probably Tuesday and Wednesday. Those are either 200 sets, 400 sets, 800 sets, 1000 sets or 2000 sets.
But on the weekends it’s my favourite session. Some people would shudder at them, They would be say 20 x 800’s with a 200m jog in between. We’d be keeping within all the same pace. Those sets train patience on your Ironman run.They also train pacing. You don’t want to be blasting the first five and then die on your last five of the 20 x 800m say.
BRAD BROWN: What sort of pace would you be running that, would that be sort of a lot quicker than your marathon pace, what would you typically be running those at?
ANNCHEN CLARKE: So typically if you want to be running a 3:30 marathon, you’ll be running your 800s at 3 minute 30 seconds. If you’ll be running a 3 hour marathon, you’ll be running your 800s at 3 minutes per 800.
BRAD BROWN: That’s a pretty long session and pretty tough, I’m sure, but it’s one that you absolutely thrive on. Annchen, what would you say the one thing that you’ve done as far as running goes, that’s made a big difference in helping you run faster?
The Ironman run training sessions that help you run faster
ANNCHEN CLARKE: I definitely think it’s the track sessions. I used to, before I met Raynard, when I started getting into endurance, is just go and smash every run. Where with him it’s pretty much your typical, you do do some slow, long runs, with some intervals in between, you do your tempo sessions, you do your easy runs, recovery runs. It’s not just about blasting every training session.
BRAD BROWN: Brilliant, Annchen, thank you so much for your time today on here on The Kona Edge, we look forward to catching up again soon and take care.
ANNCHEN CLARKE: Thank you so much.
Brad Brown is a 40 something age grouper that dreams of one day qualifying for and racing on the big island (He may have to outlive everyone in his age group though).
Morbidly obese in 2009, Brad clocked in at 165kgs (363lbs) at his heaviest.
He's subsequently lost a third of his body weight on the way to a half Ironman pb of 5:06 and a full Ironman pb of 12:21.
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