I’m feeling rather giddy about yesterday’s MAF test. (What MAF training is and why I’m doing it, see here.)
The last time I did a MAF test was in February. It went OK – I didn’t think it was indicative of my progress but you get what you get on testing days. Then I got sick, didn’t run for 2 weeks, etc., etc. I spent the last 3 weeks getting back on track. It was frustrating to say the least. My HR monitor would beep incessantly. I was running 10:00-10:30 average pace on most runs. Then, last Monday, I had a really great run (9:32 average pace). I waited a week (was it a fluke?!) and decided to do a MAF test yesterday.
MAF testing days always make me nervous. You can have a good day or a bad day and it is what it is. No redos (at least I don’t allow redos). I generally run a 3-mile warm up at well below my MAF HR (~ 130), then run 4 to 5 miles at my MAF HR (143).
Baseline MAF test from November 30th (when I started MAF training). Shown below are the MAF miles (purple) and their corresponding HR.
Month 2+ MAF test from February 8th. This was a blah run. My stomach was rumbling (note the GI issues!) and I felt that my paces were faster on other runs. There is definitely progress though.
Month 4.5(ish) MAF test from April 13th. I felt amazing yesterday and decided to add a 5th MAF mile. I got so excited about seeing 8:xx pace that my HR was a smidge high for miles 4 and 5!
I do take yesterday’s results with a (slight) grain of salt – it was a good run day. Just like February 8th was a blah run day. But you cannot deny the data! MAF training – it works, folks!
I still have 6 more weeks of MAF training. Unless I plateau…then I’ll stop MAF and start adding in speed work. Part of me will be sad to set aside the HR monitor but I’m actually looking forward to moving my legs (fast) again!