The LSD weekend run

Peak trail runners

What does your normal weekend morning training consist of? For many, it is a long, slow run, often with company and it will last for an hour or more. Sunday morning normally works well for this session that is part of the runner's staple diet. We are often off work and so have time to take our time, as it were! This long run is often referred to as long slow distance or LSD and is a term present in the vocabulary of runners and cyclists training for long events.

Long slow distance running was promoted as a training method by both Arthur Lydiard and Joe Henderson in 1969. Henderson saw his approach as providing an alternative to the dominant school of training for distance running which he called “PTA school of running - the pain, torture, and agony” approach. The runbritain training wizard includes an element of LSD in the marathon training programmes although he also puts in interval work, hill training and threshold running to ensure that you train all fitness components and energy systems. However, the other types of training should also be enjoyable and rewarding. Pain, torture and agony should be temporary and should lead to enjoyment, satisfaction and reward!

So what does LSD give you?

The biggest benefit will be building your aerobic base and that includes increase in blood volume and the body becoming more economic at burning fuel. It will teach the body to use fat as an energy supply. It can help you to lose weight and will build up your endurance. Supplying teh working muscle with oxygen is often improved to via capillarisation.

Increased capillarisation is the formation of an increase in capillaries that surround a muscle. Capillaries are small blood vessels located within the body's tissues that help to transfer blood to and from the muscles. An increase in capillaries results in an increase in blood flow to the muscles.

LSD is less intense than the other types of training so, as long as you choose the correct footwear for your long runs, the chance of injury is low as there is less stress on the body during this training session.

LSD lends itself to group runs. Sunday morning pack runs are a common sight across the land as runners head out for an hour or more, chatting as they go and putting the world to right!

So - get on the phone to your friends today to start organising your Sunday morning jaunt!