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Michael Shelley, 3min reps



Michael Shelley, 3min reps

Michael Shelley may have burst to prominence in winning the Commonwealth Games marathon in Glasgow, but he’s been at the forefront of athletics in Australia for a long time. As a 20-year-old he ran 3:39.90 for 1500m and he made his first world cross country senior team in 2004. By 2008 he’d moved up in distance running 28:08.96 at Melbourne’s Zatopek meeting, and the following year he won the City to Surf in a slick 41.02. Since then road races have been more his go.

He placed 16th at the London Olympic marathon and is looking forward to running the London Marathon on the 26th of April.

Michael’s session

8 to 10 by 3-minute reps with 1min recovery. After each 3min rep, he does a slow jog recovery for a minute before returning where he came from. The main part of the session takes 35-40 minutes to complete. Obviously it is preceded by a warm-up and warm down.

The background

Michael usually does the session on Tuesday night at Coombabah nature reserve on the Gold Coast. The session was devised for Michael by coach Dick Telford and the section Michael chooses is relatively flat on a fairly even dirt trail. 

Michael says:

“It’s similar to a kilometre on the track, but it’s different scenery and I’m not running around in circles. I used to do a fair bit on the track, but now I enjoy running on trails. I try and get back to the same spot each time, which is challenging in itself, especially given you only have one-minute recovery between each one.  The distance doesn’t really matter, as long as I am getting to the same point each time. It’s a good race-pace training session. It is also a really good session to help build fitness."

Michael’s suggestion for other runners

I wouldn’t recommend doing it during the week leading into a marathon. By then you should be in taper mode. It is a session that anyone can do, but if you are moderately fit, then I suggest you work your way into it by doing 4-5 of the reps and then gradually increasing it to 8?