April Run Challenge - Week 1 workouts

We are excited to launch our Keep Yourself From Going Crazy in April run challenge. We sat down and brainstormed about what we could contribute to our community (during such weird and unique times), and we decided on a month of challenging and fun workouts. 

We want to provide something you could rely on to get your butt out the door and on to the street or trail. A lot of people are really struggling right now, so we want to do our part to supply a bit of motivation. Here ar a few important points;
  • PLEASE keep in mind that we are not encouraging group runs for ANY of our workouts. We want you to run these workouts solo, with someone you live with, or with your adoring dog(s). 
  • Record your runs on Strava, tag us on Instagram, and chat with the community in our Facebook group. The hashtag for the month is #capra16x30
  • After your workout, head over to the spreadsheet, scroll down to find your name (alphabetical by first name) and then under the correct workout, add ONE WORD to describe how you felt.
There will likely be some terms that you may not understand, so before each workout, we will also post a short video on social media to describe the workout for the day. 

There are a few terms that I (Mike) will regularly use, so I'll give a quick description of those now;
  1. RATE of PERCEIVED EXERTION: I use an RPE scale from 1 to 10. It is an internal feeling of your own perceived effort.
  2. BASE RUN: Long and aerobic. These runs should comprise the large majority of your training miles as an endurance athlete. (RPE 2 or 3...no more)
  3. EASY: The effort that you would be doing on your base runs...or even a bit slower
  4. CRUISE or STEADY: Just above Base run pace. Feeling strong and quick, but your breathing is still under control. (RPE 5/6)
  5. HARD: This would be approximately the pace that you would run a 10km (or 40-50 minute) max effort at. It should feel tough, with heavy breathing, but really heavy acidosis shouldn't happen until near the end of this style of workout. (RPE 7/8)
  6. RECOVERY: Is included with Interval sets. It is as important as the interval itself. Without using the recovery properly, the remaining hard work could be a disaster
  7. SPRINT: as fast as you can go!
  8. STRIDES: NOT sprints. Short 10-15 second accelerations up to approximately 90% max speed. These are usually part of the warm up, so don't hammer yourself on them. They are NOT sprints and your RPE should only be 4/5.

APRIL 1- This is a YELLOW workout by Mike Murphy

Cruise Intervals (with Variations)
This workout is one of my current favourites. The quality in this workout is what I refer to as cruise intervals....but with a bit of speed-play in them (slight undulations in pace). Do this one on flatter terrain, so that it is runnable.
These intervals should not kill you. You should feel strong and quick, and be breathing hard but controlled. The RPE (rate of perceived exertion) for the quality portion of they one should be 5/10. Definitely finish this one thinking that you could do a bit more.

Warm Up:
  • 20:00 easy jog
  • 10 x 10 second strides (short accelerations, like before the start of a race)

Workout: (can do 2 intervals instead of 3)
  • 3 x (9:00 with 3:00 jogging rest between them)
  • Each 9:00 is broken down into repeating blocks of
    30 seconds steady, 15 seconds easier
  • Note: That's 12 sets, all in a row, of :30/:15, to make up 9:00 total
  • The strong should feel like a 5/10 effort, and the easy is a 3/10
Cool Down:
  • 15:00-20:00 super easy

APRIL 3- This is a RED workout by Christy Drever

The Quick and Dirty
These Intervals are meant to be ran fast. You should feel like you are working and breathing hard but controlled. The RPE (rate of perceived exertion) for the quality portion of they one should be 7/10. Start this workout conservatively, and build into it. If you go out too hard, the 1 minute recovery will bite you in the ass. 

Warm Up:
  • 20:00 easy, but slightly ramping up your effort every 5 minutes
* can do either 1 or 2 rounds of these*
  • 5 x (2:00 Hard with 1:00 Easy Jog)
  • The hard should feel like a 7/10 effort, and the easy is a 2/10
  • Take 5:00 recovery (easy jog) between rounds if you decide to do a 2nd one 
Cool Down:
  • 15:00-20:00 super easy

APRIL 5- This is a GREEN workout by Eric Carter

The Taxi - Base Run
Base runs are a critical part of any training program and should be the vast majority of your volume. Arrange with your partner or roommate to be available at a specific time of day to pick you up. Either drive to a trailhead or start your run from home and go for a point to point long run. When you're nearing 30min remaining, text your ride to meet you at the pre-arranged finish point and have them pick you up. Try exploring somewhere new - go somewhere that you haven't already seen! (This one can also be done in the opposite direction. Have your ride drop you off at the starting point, and you run home).

*We realize that not everyone has a partner or a roommate available to do this with. Given the Social Distancing that we should all be implementing, we do not recommend that you get a ride from someone whom you don't live with. If you don't have a ride option, then just go for a regular base run.

The effort on your base run should be a 2/10.  By going above this effort, you actually get less return on the workout!  SLOW DOWN

APRIL 7- This is a PURPLE challenge by Solana Green

Just with how the calendar works out, you won't be doing your first silly run until next Tuesday April 7th. However, for our first challenge, you'll need some time to prepare, so this is perfect.

Throughout the week, using supplies you have at home, you're going to make greeting cards. Take a minute to think through who needs one right now...a running friend you haven't been able to connect with lately, a neighbour who's a nurse, or someone you know that's been self isolating for weeks. To be honest, right now we all could use a little old fashioned pick-me-up.

You can make 1 card, you can make 20 cards, but as important as making your cards is, mapping out a route to deliver them on foot is just as important. If this first week of workouts has you a bit tired, only deliver 2-3 cards and do a 20 minute run. If you're feeling like a super-hero, head on out and deliver 20-30 cards throughout your neighbourhood on a 2 hour jaunt. 

If anyone is in North Burnaby (Hastings & Willingdon area), my Grandma, aka Grammy is 95, 96 in July and has been put on house arrest. If you're in the area and would like to deliver a card to her, DM me for her address.

Please wash your hands before and after making cards, don't touch your face during, and to avoid all the nasty normal sweating germs while running, consider placing each card in a ziplock bag for your run.

One last note, this is a casual, enjoyable jog, so please make sure you are able to talk and burst out in spontaneous musical numbers all over your neighhbourhood. 

1 comment

Marion Craig

As the fortunate recipient of one of the hand-made, hand-delivered cards, this was a GREAT run. Thank you for the wonderful idea. And stay safe and healthy!

Marion Craig

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