Hi Eric

I have done all my prep work, working on strength and form and changing to zero drop minimalistic shoes. I have completed the sugar and processed food detox, and I cant wait to get started. I did my tests this week and am a bit confused. The heart rate zones seem so low! Do other people feel this way or did I perhaps not try hard enough in the test? I am a very average (at best) runner who has been running more on than off for many years. I have done loads of half marathons with my average finishing time between 2 and 2.10 hours. I have done a couple marathons finishing between 4.10 and 4.20. I would really like to improve on these times. My ave heart rate over the 20 minute test was 153. The heart rate zones for this result seem so low....please advise. I do generally have a low resting heart rate, not sure what it is at the moment but doctors are always quite shocked when they check it.  

Would appreciate your thoughts....in the mean time.....here I go!

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For comparison, I'm still very much a beginner and my average heart rate during my 20 minute test was 163 (with a max of 173).  During my 1-mile test, my average was 171 and my max was 180.

My heart rate tends to be a bit high for my age (37 years), so your 153 sounds reasonable to me.  For instance, I ran/walked my first half-marathon in January in 2h:55m with an average heart rate of 173 and a max of 198.

Thanks Jacob. Is great to hear from others. I live in South Africa and am doing this program completely on my own. Is good to have this blog to communicate with others. Thanks for the comparison. How far along are you? How is it going for you?

I'm on my own too here in central Florida.  I'm on day 5 of phase 1 week 1, so it's a little early to say how it's going.  I skipped the optional workout on day 4, so I'm looking forward to today's run.  (I run after dark to avoid the heat of the Florida summer sun.)

Cool. Hope you had a good run. I start this week. Will take monday and possibly friday as my rest days as I work, so find longer runs easier on the weekends. I run super early, around 4 or 4.30 am cause I have to be at work by 7 and after work its supper, kiddies homework etc! Am a bit worried cause I did a 30 km trail run today so am not starting this exactly rested. It was one I just couldnt miss. Good luck for week 2!

Hi Candice

When I did my first test back in February before starting the strategic running foundation. my average HR was 169 with a max of 174 when I retested after the end of phase 1 I had an average HR of 159 and a max of 166. Based upon what you have told us it sounds about right to me too and don't forget Eric says during the 1.6km (1 mile) test you don't want to be completely spent at the end.

Hope this helps.

Thanks Robert, it does for sure. How did you find the program? Have you had the results you hoped for? I am so excited to get going! 

Hi Candice, The Strategic Running Foundation is a fantastic program and fun too. I couldn't wait for the next days training after completing the one I was doing. I didn't quite finish Phase 2 as I purchased Eric's 20 week Marathon program stating it at week 8 so that it concludes as I run the Melbourne Marathon on the 12th of October.

Upon stating Eric's foundation program I had never trained 5-6 days a week before but if your strict and follow the program using a heart rate monitor the training is so targeted that you won't over train. Couple this with an improved form that you constantly are working on within the program and injury caused by the program is, in my opinion, non existant.


Hi Candice,
The heart rates seem right to me. I have a resting HR in the low 40s with stints into the 30s overnight. I always have to let my docs know that I have a low resting HR before they check. On a brief stay at the hospital I was constantly setting off the alarms and the nurses kept getting worried.
I just finished Phase 2 and my Average HR was in the low to mid 160s for the 3 times I did the 20 minute test. Just try to remember that zone 2 is MUCH slower than you are used to going. To give you an idea, when I started the program, my 20 minute average pace was around 7:44 per mile or so. When I was starting the program and running in zone 2, I was going a little over 10 minutes per mile. Don't worry, it is normal to go much slower than you are used to. My first couple runs, I felt frustrated at the pace but got used to it.
I absolutely loved the program. Due to family life (my wife had a baby as I concluded Phase 1) and a hectic work schedule I was only able to run consistently 4 days a week instead of the ideal 6. I still felt I had great improvement. I posted my 1 mile time trial results and 20 minute test results for the 3 times in another post if you want to see my progress. The program definitely helped me improve. I noticed the biggest gains when I started to do the foot exercises religiously.
Best of luck!

Thanks so much for the feedback Mike. Well done on completing the program with a new baby in the house. The slower pace really does take some getting used to but I am looking forqard to reaping the rewads! 


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