Running Diary: August 8, 2020/2nd MAF Test


I became lazy for the past days and I just stopped running since last July 30 and that makes 9 days of no running. Three days ago, I came up with a video on my You Tube Channel and the topic “What Happens To You After One Week Of No Running?”. Aside from my personal observations and feelings, I posted a survey question on Facebook about the same question. I got a lot of comments/answers from my friends and from the Public and those comments are mentioned in the said video/episode.

Starting today, I resumed my running and I decided to post my running workout for the day in my blog. This will be a daily routine for me in this blog. Actually, three days ago, I decided to have a run in my Backyard Loop to conduct my 2nd MAF (Maximum Aerobic Function) Test for the month of July. However, on my 3rd mile, my Suunto Watch HR Monitor just stopped and stuck to 113 BPM as average and it could no longer go down even if I was already walking. In a few minutes, I found out that the HR Monitor Belt has no longer have a signal to my Watch. I just stopped and I was able to run and hike for 4 miles.

Today, I did a one mile easy jog as my warm-up with the thought that I am going to do my 2nd MAF Test. My HR Monitor was working and I started with 85 bpm and it registered 112 bpm as soon as I finished my warm-up of one mile. Since I have reached my lowest HR within my range of 112-122 bpm, I decided to start my MAF Test. After my first mile, my HR registered at 121 bpm with a time of 14:25 minutes. I rested for 30 seconds by walking and then I started my 2nd mile. I have slowed at the middle of the mile when my watch registered at 122 bpm and tried to maintain it until I finished the 2nd mile in 16:30 minutes. I rested again for 30 seconds before I started my 3rd mile. When I saw my bpm at 121, I started my 3rd mile and had my pace a little faster. I was able to maintain my average bpm at 122 until I finished my 3rd mile in 14:55 minutes. Having confident of my bpm at 122, I started my 4th mile after resting for 30 seconds. After finishing 2 loops of my Backyard Loop which is equivalent to 0.60 miles, my HR registered at 122 and I was on a “auto-mode” in my run. For the last loop, I was running through perceived effort and I was confident that I was not going more than my 122 BPM. When I finished my 4th mile, I saw my watch registered a time of 12:39 minutes and I was surprised that my time was so fast. But when I looked at my Average BPM, I saw that my HR registered at 123 bmp. I might have run at a faster pace when I was thinking that I was running easy on my perceived effort.

Because of this, I rested for one minute instead of 30 seconds just to be sure my HR will go down at 122 bpm. My rest for 1 minute brought down my average bpm to 122 and I started my 5th and last mile. My 5th mile registered with a time of 15:05 minutes. I just walked for another 300 meters before I did my stretching exercises. In summary, I was able to run a distance of 6.2 miles or 10 kilometers for 1:40+hours.

The rolling is the summary of my 2nd MAF Test (July 2020)

1st Mile—-14:25 minutes                  4th Mile—-12:39 minutes

2nd Mile—16:30 minutes                  5th Mile—-15:05 minutes

3rd Mile—-14:55 minutes

Tomorrow, we will find out if I have improved or not from my 1st MAF Test as we will be able to compare it and come up with an assessment. For the meantime, this is the video that I have posted on my You Tube Channel on what happens when you rest for one week with NO Running. Thanks for watching and please subscribe for more videos on running.

 

 

 

1st MAF Test Of The Year (2020)


After running for six weeks on MAF training, easy running using my Heart Rate Monitor, following the MAF Formula where my beats per minute range would be from 112 to 122 beats per minute must be maintained while I was on my running workout. As a review, Maximum Aerobic Function (MAF) Formula is 180 minus my age of of 68 plus 10 bpm being a runner of more than 65 years old and had never been “sidelined” from running due to injury. My MAF bpm is 122 and my range of MAF Beats Per Minute during my running workout should be 112 to 122. For the past 6 weeks, I was not supposed to breach the maximum bpm of 122 during my easy/recovery runs. However, with my training schedule being a CTS athlete for the past weeks, I have to follow my training schedule and workout as prescribed by my Coach. However, what I have observed was that I was not fatigued in my tempo runs and I could easily recover after a day of hard training.

After two days of not running due to the inclement weather in my Playground, I was fully rested during the weekend and I decided to have my first MAF Test today, June 29, 2020. After a short stretching exercises, I started my run with a warm-up for one mile where my Heart Rate steadily increased from 90 beats per minutes to 112 after my first loop in my Backyard. Before I finished my first mile, I was able to reach 119 beats per minute. Once I finished one mile, I went on on my First Mile for my MAF Test. I finished my first mile in 16:15 minutes where I had to walk for a few seconds after my bpm reached to 123 bpm on the last 400 meter of my first mile. After the first mile, I took a picture of my GPS Watch, take a sip of cold water, and walked a few meters until 30 seconds elapsed (this ritual was repeated every time I finish a mile) and started my 2nd mile. The following is the list of my time every mile:

1st Mile——16:15 minutes                      4th Mile——14:37 minutes

2nd Mile—–15:28 minutes                      5th Mile——14:35 minutes

3rd Mile——14:31 minutes

It was only on the first mile that I breached 122 bpm to 123bpm but it was able to bring it back after a few seconds of hiking. For the rest of the miles, I was able to maintain my average of bpm within 121-122. On my last mile, I was able to maintain the whole mile with an average bpm of 122.

1st MAF Test June 29
My GPS Watch Results For Every Mile On MAF Test

Although my Backyard Loop is not the ideal venue or location for my MAF Test, I am still satisfied with the result of my test and how my body felt after the workout. My body was very relaxed and not so worn-out or fatigued. In my past MAF Tests few years back, I have been doing them on Oval Track, being faster than my time in my Backyard Loop. With the uneven ground, lots of turns, and single-track trail in my Backyard Loop, I expect that my time would be slower than running in an oval track. On the contrary, I think I am faster now as compared when I had my MAF Test in 2011.

After 4 weeks, I will be doing my second MAF Test with the hope that I will be able to lower the times as compared to the results today. I will continue to apply MAF training in my easy/recovery runs in the coming days and weeks. I know that I will be a better and smarter runner in the next months and years due to this training.

$ 2.00 Donation

 

 

 

Revisiting Maffetone’s Training Method (2020)


Sometime on the first week of August 2011, I have written on this blog about the Maffetone’s Training in Running and it was very effective then during my training days in preparation for my running races. For the whole month of August 2011, almost all my blogposts were devoted on my personal application of the MAF (Maximum Aerobic Function) Test and the Carbohydrate’s “Two-Week Test”. You can revisit and review these posts by clicking the links. All of these posts were my personal experience and application of such training method after buying the Kindle Edition of the book, Dr. Phil Maffetone’s “The Big Book On Endurance Training and Racing” which I bought then at Amazon.com.

Book Of Dr Phil Maffetone

Fast Forward. Two weeks ago, I came across, by accident, a book by Stu Mittleman entitled “Slow Burn: Burn Fat By Exercising Slower” and I recalled my past posts about the Maffetone’s Training and reviewed them again together with the Kindle Edition of Dr Phil Maffetone’s Book. On the following day, I started applying the Stu Mittleman running method and after a few days, I realized that I have to go back to the Maffetone Training Method. And that is now what I have been doing for almost 3 weeks, as I am now on my third week.

I have been following the “180 Formula” which means that to come up with a Maximum Aerobic Function (MAF), my Hear Rate should be, 180 minus my age of 68 which is 112. But since I am more than 65 years old and had been regularly running (without any injuries) for the past years, I can add 10 beats per minute to 112, making my Maximum Heart Rate to 122 beats per minute using the MAF Method. I have been using my SUUNTO Ambit 3 Peak GPS Watch as my Heart Rate Monitor.

For the past weeks, I have been diligently following the MAF Heart Rate in my easy and recovery runs where my HR Average ranges from 111 to 117 beats per minute. However, what is very unique in my application of the MAF is that I am using it in my daily runs within my Backyard Loop. My Backyard Loop is 95% single track trail with uneven ground with some feet of elevation which has a distance of 480 meters in one loop. As compared when I was doing the MAF in 2011, my runs were done on paved roads and my monthly MAF Tests were done in an Oval Track (Remy Field in Subic Freeport). I was running faster then because the conditions of the road and oval track were very ideal.

On my third week since Monday, I have been registering an Average of 112 to 117 beats per minute in my daily runs within my Backyard Loop with an Average Speed of 3.6 to 3.8 miles per hour. On the paved road, with the same average of HR, I could get an Average Speed of 4.6-5.0 miles per hour or faster.

I plan to conduct my first MAF Test using my Backyard Loop as the venue next week (4th week) instead of going to the Oval Track. Another option would be to conduct the MAF Test along the paved road where I could determine a distance of One Mile. We will see if I would be able to do two sets of MAF Tests next week, one for trail and another for the road.

If you are interested to learn more about the Maffetone Training Method, you can simply buy the book or go to the website of Dr Phil Maffetone as you can download the MAF Method for FREE. You can also get many information about everything about Nutrition and Training.

If you have a YouTube account, please visit and subscribe to my YouTube Channel as I will be posting Videos about my training using the Maffetone Method.

Thank you for reading this post. Have a good day!

 

MAF Test


It was hard for me to adjust to the Maffetone Training by following 180 Formula during the 1st week of my training. I had mentioned in my previous posts that I “cheated” on strictly following the 180 Formula where my Maximum Aerobic Function’s (MAF) Heart Rate shoud be 121 beats per minute. I started with 142-145 beats per minute for the first 2-3 days until I was able to adjust to 138 beats per minute. After a few days, I was comfortably running, slow jogging and walking at 132 beats per minute.

After another 2-3 days, I was able to bring down my maximum aerobic heart rate to 121 beats per minute. After 3 weeks of running and walking within my MAF of 121 beats per minute based from my 180 Formula, I did my first MAF Test. As suggested by Dr. Phil Maffetone, a runner must first warm-up by gradually increasing the heart rate from a resting rate to a range of maximum aerobic rate, from the lowest range of 111 beats per minute to my maximum rate of 121 beats per minute. Warm-up is being done by slow walking up to brisk walking for almost 15-16 minutes which is equivalent to 4 laps at the oval track. It is notable in my running workouts that I don’t perform any stretching exercises before and after my runs. However, a 10-minute squat after my running workout had been a “must” and later became a habit.

Once my max aerobic rate range of 111-121 bpm is reached, I start jogging/running and complete 4 laps on the oval track  which is equivalent to one mile. The time is recorded and written on a paper. After a short recovery by walking of at least 30 seconds, I do my second set of one mile run until I complete five repetitions of one mile run. The time of each mile repetition is being recorded. After the 5th mile, I have to cool-down by walking another 4 laps until my heart beat rate would gradually go down to the rate that was registered before I started my workout. After 3-4 weeks, another MAF Test has to be done.

So far, I just completed my 3rd MAF Test last week. The results are shown in a tabulation below:

JUNE JULY AUGUST
16:50 16:27 16:10
17:32 17:18 16:56
18:10 17:41 17:27
18:55 18:39 17:35
19:28 19:08 17:52

The tabulation would show that I am gaining my “aerobic speed” which means that I am getting faster with a constant HR of 121 beats per minute. When I started to strictly follow the 180 Formula, the distance (as registered by GF 305) I could cover for a hour was 5.6 kilometers. After one week of max HR of 121 bpm, I could cover 5.66 kilometers per hour. After 3 months of 180 Formula/MAF training, my distance covered for one hour is 5.88 kilometers per hour!

Sometimes I vary my method of determining my improvement. I would run/jog for a distance of 8 kilometers (5 miles) continouosly at the oval track by maintaining an average HR of 119-121 beats per minute and try to record the time elapsed to cover the distance. On my first try, I registered a time of 1:31:20 hours. After a few days, I registered a time of 1:30:04 hours. At present, I was able to register my fastest time in 1:25:48 hours for the said distance.

My typical weekly workout would consist of “doubles” during the day—1.5 hours in the morning and another 1.5 hours in the late afternoon. Such workout would include 15 minutes of warm-up, 15 minutes of cool-down, and running for one hour at an average HR of 121 bpm. On the next day, I do 2.5 hours with 2 hours of actual running and the rest for my warm-up and cool down. I do this kind of workout in the morning only which is also considered as my “heat training” under the sun as I start my workout at 8:00 or 9:00 AM. On the next day, I go back to my daily “doubles”. And the cycle continues throughout the week. My long runs during weekends would last up to 3 hours of running & walking, making sure that my average HR would not be more than 121 bpm. The last MILO Elimination Run was my longest LSD for almost 6 hours, covering a distance of 32 kilometers.

It is very evident that I measure my running workouts by the TIME that my feet are on the ground! The distance covered during these timed workouts is just a data that provides a good feedback and evaluation of my improvement in this kind of training. At least, the minimum of hours per week in my training is 12 hours.

It is worthy to note that within this 3-month of strictly following the max aerobic HR of 121 bpm, I was able to try and complete my “Two-Week Test” to determine my carbohydrate intolerance, a situation when the body has more carbohydrates stored in the body system. This “Test” greatly improved my resting HR, lowering and sustaining my MAF’s max aerobic HR to 121 bpm during my workouts, reduced my weight to 135 pounds, and no longer have sleepy feeling after lunch or after a heavy meal. The best result is that I can control my urge to eat foods rich in carbohydrates.

I hope there would be good results in my endurance capabilities as soon I start my anaerobic/speed training in the weeks to come.

180 Formula


Click on the link below on the article by Dr Phil Maffetone on his Maximum Aerobic Function (MAF) which is a detailed explanation on his training philosophy following one’s Heart Rate and the use of a Heart Rate Monitor.

Want_Speed_Slow_Down_2007

Lately, one of my “friends” from Facebook who had been a triathlete for 17 years had called my attention when he read one of my posts that I am presently training using the Heart Rate Monitor. After his retirement from triathlon, he is pursuing his first ultra marathon run this coming December as he thinks that ultra running is “deeper” and more challenging than his past triathlon feats. I am sure this guy is a “purist” IRONMAN and one of the bests in the 90s or in his younger years. He even predicted that if I continued my plans to get into triathlon in the mid-80s, I could be a sure podium winner in my age category. (Note: I could be fighting it out with my brother Retired General Samuel and Retired Colonel Brigilio Balaba of the Philippine Constabulary for the top honors for our age group).

In one of his e-mails, he shared to me the following updated version of the MAF’s 180 Formula.

Here is the formula:

1. Take 180

2. Subtract your age

3. Take this number and correct it by the following:

-If you do not workout, subtract another 5 beats.

-If you workout only 1-2 days a week, only subtract 2 or 3 beats.

-If you workout 3-4 times a week keep the number where it is.

-If you workout 5-6 times a week keep the number where it is.

-If you workout 7 or more times a week and have done so for over a year, add 5 beats to the number.

-If you are over about 55 years old or younger than about 25 years old, add another 5 beats to whatever number you now have.

-If you are about 60 years old or older OR if you are about 20 years old or younger, add an additional 5 beats to the corrected number you now  have.

You now have your maximum aerobic heart rate, which again is the maximum heart rate that you can workout at and still burn  mostly fat for fuel. Now go out and do ALL of your cardiovascular  training at or below this heart rate and see how your pace improves.  After just a few weeks you should start to see a dramatic improvement in the speed you can go at these lower heart rates.

The details of his e-mail is properly explained in the link below:

http://www.markallenonline.com/maoArticles.aspx?AID=2

Based from the updated version, my Maximum Aerobic Function’s Heart Rate is supposed to be 126 beats per minute (180-59 = 121 + 5 for being above 55 years old). However, since I’ve started with my first MAF Test with a Maximum Aerobic Heart Rate of 121 beats per minute, I will maintain 121 bpm as my training’s MAF heart rate.

Good luck to my ultra running “friends” and BDM “veterans” who will be competing on this weekend’s CAMSUR Cobra Ironman 70.3 Triathlon Competition. Take it “easy” on the swimming event. Make sure to get a “spot” for the KONA IRONMAN this coming October in Hawaii, USA!!! Have fun and be the best to yourself!

For those who have started to train for the 1st Taklang Damulag 100-Mile Endurance Run and for the yearly BDM Races, I highly recommend you to try the Maffetone’s Training on the use of Heart Rate Monitor/MAF Test.

Maffetone’s Training


If you ask any of the local triathletes if they know such “Maffetone’s Training” and if they tell you, NO, it’s either they are ignorant or they don’t want to share their training “secret” to you. If an average or competitive triathlete does not know about this kind of training, I guess, he/she is not training properly to develop what the training calls, “aerobic speed”! In the truer sense of the word, the “holistic approach in endurance training and racing”

I bought the Kindle version of the Dr. Phil Maffetone’s “The Big Book On Endurance Training and Racing” two months ago and started to follow his Training by adhering to the 180 Formula as my Maximum Aerobic Function by monitoring my Heart Rate. With a purchase of the simplest and most basic HR Monitor watch, I started to follow such training for the past weeks. 180 Formula would simply mean subtracting your age to 180 as your maximum aerobic heart rate during your aerobic phase workouts.

On my first week of the training, I could hardly bring down my HR to 121 beats per minute while on a slow jog. I started with 142 beats per minute on the first days of my 1st week and then gradually bringing it down to 138 bpm. Later, I could easily jog at an HR rate of 135 bpm. During the Takbo Runfest 16K and MILO Marathon Eliminations, I was able to bring my average HR to 130-132 beats per minute. This is the very reason why I am always on the tail end in the past road races. Actually, I was trying to “cheat” on the 180 Formula as my desired training HR could had been 121 beats per minute which translated to a brisk walking activity.

But on my 1st MAF Test on an oval track lately, I was able to constantly follow the desired Maximum Heart Rate of 121 beats per minute throughout the workout. And the results follow what the Maffetone Training intends to advocate. We will see what will be the result on my 2nd MAF Test after 3-4 weeks.

It is also surprising to most of the runners (in these past road races) that they observed me to be using some “wires”. Yes, I renewed my love to music during my workouts and road races by sporting an Ipod Shuffle which is light and easy to clip! Maffetone’s training includes music and some form of cadence and beats through selected kinds of music as part of one’s playlist.

What are the initial observations and benefits I got from this kind of training? First of all, I can have a workout that lasts for hours and hours without any pain or sorenes. After running for almost 5 hours at the MILO, I could walk straight and without any limp after the race, moreso, on the following day there were no pains on my legs. On the nutrition side, by following a “no carbo”diet one week before the MILO run, I did not feel hungry during the duration of the run and maintained my constant hydration through water and my Gatorade G2 mix. I did not mind getting and eating those ripe bananas in the Aid Stations. The best result? I did not have any kind of muscle cramps on any part of my legs and body! I was amazed and surprised about such result. No “bonking” and no “wall” to speak of even if my past training long runs would last for only 2 1/2 hours with an average HR of 130-132 beats per minute!

Last week, I discovered that Dr Phil Maffetone has a website which is very informative and updated as compared to the book I purchased. I am going to share his website to my readers with the hope that they will be able to follow the training and its philosophy with patience and positive attitude.

The following is the website: http://philmaffetone.com. For those who are joining the 1st BR Barefoot Run, it would be an interesting one for them to read his article “GAIT–Why Every Runner Is Different, and How You can Go Faster……, and other related running articles.

To my ultra running friends, I suggest you take a look at this training and try it. Patience and Positive attitude play a great role if you want to adhere to this kind of training philosophy.

Enjoy and have fun reading the articles and essays of Dr Phil Maffetone. Happy weekend!