Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Bart Yasso 800s

Yesterday evening I scheduled a Bart Yasso session. This involves running ten repeats of 800 metres. If you run ten of these 800m repeats at an average of three minutes ten seconds per interval it is an indication that you can complete a marathon in three hours and ten minutes. The recovery period between intervals should match the average time it takes to complete an interval. Hope that all makes sense!
I set out with the aim of completing the intervals in an average of three minutes, with three minutes recovery between intervals. Upon completion of the workout I found I had completed the intervals in an average of 02.55. According to the workout's premise I should be able to complete a marathon in approximately two hours and fifty-five minutes. I am very sceptical of this claim. Having trawled a forum threads and websites I found little or no consensus on Yasso 800s but most felt that a more accurate reflection of your marathon time would be to add five minutes to what a Yasso 800 session indicates. Additionally, many stated that they were reasonably accurate but only in the context of a holistic marathon programme that includes tempo runs, long slow runs and recovery runs. In short, no definitive answer but it seems prudent not to read too much into a Yasso session.

Split Time Distance Max Speed Avg HR
1 0:12:48 1.49 5:50 132
2 0:02:57 0.5 5:30 171
3 0:03:00 0.34 6:07 153
4 0:02:52 0.5 4:51 167
5 0:03:00 0.37 5:45 152
6 0:02:52 0.5 5:22 164
7 0:03:00 0.35 5:53 151
8 0:02:56 0.5 5:21 168
9 0:03:00 0.34 6:20 153
10 0:02:56 0.5 5:32 168
11 0:03:00 0.34 6:00 152
12 0:02:57 0.5 5:23 169
13 0:03:00 0.32 5:47 153
14 0:02:56 0.5 5:40 166
15 0:03:00 0.33 5:54 151
16 0:02:55 0.5 5:22 167
17 0:03:00 0.32 6:16 152
18 0:02:53 0.5 5:16 166
19 0:03:00 0.33 5:09 153
20 0:02:55 0.5 5:05 167
21 0:03:00 0.33 5:20 149
22 0:06:22 0.67 7:13 135
Summary 1:18:25 10.5 4:51 153


bricey said...

still... nice workout that suggests that sub-3 is a distinct possibility. Good luck!!

Paudie said...

Hi Westley. I included Yasso 800s into my Marathon program this year. I would find it hard to believe the predicted time it gives but it is something to mix into the training. What I tried to do was cut down the recovery in-between. Best of luck with it. You doing Dublin??


Last year I averaged 2.46 for the 800's but ran 2.53 for the marathon last year! but I remember Thomas was almost spot on with his time last year.
basically take the yasso 800's with a pinch of salt.
If you have been doing a lot of speed work [ or have fast twitch mucles] you may get a overly good result, on the other hand if you do lots of miles and long tempo run you may get a low result on the yassa, but in truth run much faster!!!

Westley said...

Interesting comments all. In short I think what I can conclude is that if you cannot do 800 repeats in three minutes a sub three hour marathon is impossible. However, doing sub three minute 800 repeats is no guarantee of a sub three hour marathon.
Paudie, cheers, yep, I am doing Dublin.


Marathon prediction time;
Over the years I've found that 2 x my half time plus 10 mins give a pretty good prediction time, ie this year I ran 1.21 for the half and did 2.51.15 at London.
If your an endurance beast you could add less but on the other hand If you always find your running out of endurance over the closing miles 15-20 mins added might be closer.
Some of the best advise I ever got was from a 2.45 marathon runner friend was to really hold back the first 2 miles then get into your natural running pace.....

Grellan said...

I heard that if you can do a marathon in 3 hours then you can do the Yasso 800's in 3 miniutes but that it doesn't necessarily work the other way round.

Westley said...

Rick, Grellan thanks for the comments. Grellan, you've said in a more succinct way what I was trying to say! I think my approach will be to go through the first half in 01:29:XX (weather permitting) and if that pace continues to feel sustainable then great. If not, I will back off to 07:10 mile splits, which should still bring me home with a very good result.

Westley said...

Rick, thanks for the advice. I reckon I am probably somewhere between what you've outlined. I'm looking forward to finding out exactly where on 26 October.