Hi,

Love the book and am enjoying the experience!  I was a cross country and track runner all through high school and college, but after shortly after college I tried to become a triathlete and I succumbed to knee injuries and tight IT bands and have really never been able to run much in the last 15 years.  Every time I have tried to train (even conservatively) I developed knee issues and end up giving up and then trying again a year or two later making all the same mistakes.  I was delighted when I read 'born to run' and 'cool impossible' and it has been a wonderful experience.  My most recent knee injury was last summer while trying to train for a marathon and I ended up stopping completely and doing 3 months of physical therapy which was not helping my knee pain.  MRI showed grade 1 medial meniscus signal change which means surgery is not indicated.  I got the CI book this January and after just 10 days of doing the slant board exercises my knee pain went away!  It was quite a miracle.  I have been extremely nervous about more injuries so I have been taking it very slow.  I ditched my old shoes immediately and got zero drop shoes.   So I am in my 12th week of the transition program and I am finally ready to start phase 1. 

My question is how hard to take the 1 mile test and if anybody experienced problems with the sudden burst of speed.  I know Eric says don't go all out but I'm just concerned about injury from a big change in effort and speed.  I've been running my 30 minute runs much slower than I have ever run (to keep heart rate down and use good form) and I know that I am capable of running a mile much faster.

I am thinking of taking another week and working up to faster speeds by introducing some accelerations in my runs to make the adjustment more gradual. 

Does anybody have any thoughts about this?  My assumption is that the timed tests be done in a manner where good form is still the priority and speed will come later. 

I am looking forward to getting into the real training soon and seeing if this really does work.  My main goal is to just not be injured anymore but my dream would be to one day complete a full ironman and the leadville 100.  Those goals seem pretty impossible at the moment. 

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Michael, First of all welcome to this amazing place and congratulations on never giving up on your running.

If you run your test to your capability, what ever than may be, your test result will reflect where you are. This is the beauty of Eric's plan it caters for all runners no matter their level or abilities. If once you have performed the test and you find phase 1 as structured via you results is not meeting your performance goals or you feel you could gain greater benefit from adjusting your zones you can simply retest so as to gauge and assess where you are.  However don't forget, as Eric explains in the CI, running in HR zone 2 has enormous pay offs for mitochondria production, stamina, speed, endurance and correct form.

Good luck and keep us posted on your journey.  

Thank you, Robert!  A nice reminder about running in zone 2.  I spent a long time in the transition phase but my knee pain seems to be gone and I am finally ready for my time trials.

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