We often speak certain factors and their importance for running performance. But as often we forget the amount of these factors. Some of the training factors are not as important as others, some provide only minimal benefits or not at all, and still, we use them more than we know.
You might have seen many different division and percentages of how much you should do certain things and how important these are. Everything is based on the coaching perspective and little bit of science. But I’m pretty sure that most of the coaches make quite similar division as the below.
The base is the biggest factor, which should take 85-90% of your time. It contains recovery, basic running and strength training, mental training and an overall good mentality, technique training, healthy and diverse nutrition, will power and motivation. Consistency is the key here. Skipping base work you won’t go far.
Next is, specific training, which takes 5-8% of your time. As its name says it, specific training is all the training that doesn’t drop on the base training. Speed training, such as interval, tempo, hills and fartlek.
Extra things should take around 3-5% of your time. This includes all the recovery tools, massage, heavy lifting. If the base is considered all the basic thing, such as recovery, like sleep, here it would be things like recovery boots, sports massage.
This category is tricky, as it’s only 1-3%, but people still spend some much time, effort and money on this category. Things like supplements, shoes and other little hacks fall in here. It’s important to have proper running shoes but spending hundreds after hundreds for a pile of shoes doesn’t make you a better runner. That what it’s inside the shoe matter. Before, someone comes to say anything about Nike and other high cushion shoes, yes, they might help to get better times and give advantages. But, they do not make sub 4 hours runner sub 2:30 marathoner.
Supplements are the same thing, they might help you, but first, you should always fix base nutrition. Supplements can’t help you if your overall nutrition is not diverse and healthy. There is no magic pill, that would be way too easy.
So, focus the base and basic, and then add other factors.