A guide to our training

Our meeting points and times

We meet in the car park at St Nicholas Park, Pilgrims Way for most of our Tuesday and Thursday evening sessions.You can easily find us by using the what3words app. Our what3words location is spray.point.bolt.

There will be times where we will meet in a different location for specific training sessions. We will keep you updated through our social media, training programme on Team Up and club diary.

Our weekday sessions on Tuesday and Thursday start at 6:45pm and on Sundays we are usually meeting at 8:30am for a 5k/4 mile run followed by our longer run of 5-8 miles at 9:15am.

 

Our training sessions

Our training sessions use a combination of traditional interval training, fartlek runs and steady/tempo training. We run a number of different types of session. They are designed so that anyone who can run at least 5km can take part. 

We use the cycleway network within Stevenage. These give us safer routes to run on and avoid cars and other traffic. Some of our training sessions, particularly on Sundays, will take advantage of the wonderful trails and countryside surrounding Stevenage.

Fartlek (group) runs  After an appropriate warm up we use a series of timed intervals (efforts) where we run harder/faster before running slowly (recovery period). During the recovery period we all re-group before starting the next effort….and so on. These sessions cover distances of between 4.5 and 7 miles depending upon the ability of the runners involved.  These sessions usually start and finish at our principal meeting point in the car park at St Nicholas Park, Pilgrims Way.  Our speed endurance sessions are run in ability/pace based groups. The groups are named after mythical birds - Griffins, Harpies and Rocs ! Each are led by at least one of our run leaders and are in safe group sizes so runners and other members of the public are not out at risk. 

Interval training. These sessions tend to focus on developing your running technique and pace. They also help your overall fitness. They tend to operate over a confined area using shorter measured periods of effort (such as 400m). Our interval training has a twist!!! Conventional interval training often uses periods of fairly static recoveries. At Stevenage Phoenix we use active ‘roll on/roll off’ recoveries. This is more beneficial and there is less risk of causing injury. 

Hill training. We use a range of different approaches to our hill training, mixing up gradients and length. Hill training improves your technique, speed end strength. Neuromuscular technique can also be improved greatly by using short bursts (sprints) on steep hills. Hill training can be strenuous so we recommend this is taken on only once you have gained enough experience of running distances of 5km or more.

Tempo sessions/steady running. We use steady and threshold runs to help to improve runners aerobic fitness. These are run in groups, often with similar abilities, where the focus is on the group understanding it’s pace and controlling that so we are using aerobic rather than aerobic energy. 

The sessions above are varied between Tuesdays and Thursdays on alternate weeks so that all of our members have access to the full range of training. 

Track sessions. During the summer months we hold fortnightly track training on the grass track at Barnwell school. These sessions focus on running technique as well as speed using running drills and a variety of workouts. 
 

Sunday. Our Sunday morning runs are a great excuse for exploring the local countryside outside of Stevenage. We vary our routes and starting points and cater for a range of distances from 5km up to 10-12 miles. We usually split the total distance into two parts so we can cater for a wider range of running ability - an early 5km run followed by a longer 5-8 mile run. Members can then decide whether they run one or both of these. The runs are at a slower pace and work on the aerobic energy system and overall endurance.   

The Team Up app

All of our training sessions are powered by the Team Up app. This gives all of our members free, easy access to our training sessions and club activities from their mobile devices.

Members simply download the app to their mobile device and then copy the URL link that is given to them when they join the club. All training and club activities can then easily be seen.

Racing

When we are not at training, you will find us at races! 

We know that races can be a little daunting for many so we help by preparing members through our training programme and also by being there with them at a variety of local races. Whilst Parkrun is not a race, it is a great way to get used to running with hundreds of other runners and the joy that can bring with running. We, therefore, encourage runners to take part in Parkrun at a variety of local venues. 
 

Moving up from 5k to marathon distance can also be part of a runner‘s objectives and our coach and run leaders have a huge range of experience of the ups and downs in racing. You can tap in to that experience to help your own running and racing.

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