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The four multi-pace training domains provide different physiological stimuli and subsequent adaptations that are necessary for a well-rounded distance athlete:
 
1) Aerobic Conditioning (aka 'base work' or 'conversational running')
This comprises the bulk of a distance runner's training, especially during X1 to X3 mesocycles. It is characterised by large volumes of continuous, longer-distance running. Recommended pace is 55-75% of VO2 max pace or 70-80% of maximum heart rate (to determine these parameters, scroll to the bottom of this article).
 
The goals are to improve cardiovascular performance, stimulate slow-twitch muscle fibres, and promote tendon/ligamental adaptation. Note that excessive aerobic conditioning may risk tendon or ligamental injury because they are adapt to higher loads compared to muscles. Try not to run on crowned road surfaces whereby the left and right foot strikes are at slightly different elevations.
 
2) Anaerobic Conditioning
This is typically characterised by 15-20min of medium-intensity steady runs with walking recoveries between intervals. Tempo runs are a prime example. The purpose is to run at (or slightly higher than) your anerobic threshold pace - where blood lactic acid levels start to rise more quickly. Having said that, your cardiovascular system should be developed enough (from aerobic conditioning) such that it prevents excessive lactic acid accumulation. As such there should only be marginal anerobic accumulation, making this training load reasonably well tolerated.
 
Run at 80% of VO2 max pace (or anywhere between 75-90%) or 80-90% of max heart rate. Alternatively this approximates to your 15-21km race pace. However, the best practical method for runners to detect their anaerobic threshold pace is an awareness of increased breathing, stopping of conversation, a shift of focus from simply passing time to the actual work of running - a pace which they subjectively perceive as 'comfortably hard'.

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