The study took a control group (who maintained their current training throughout the seven week period) and an experimental group (who decreased their training volume by 50%, and replaced all training sessions with a 10-20-30 training program).
10-20-30 interval training concept:
-low (<30%), moderate (<60%), and high speed running (>90% maximal intensity)
-run for 30 seconds, 20 seconds, and 10 seconds, respectively
-run this program for 5-minute intervals, with 2-minute recovery (total of 7 minutes)
-repeat this (7 minute) program 3 or 4 times
Despite a 50% reduction in training volume, the 10-20-30 runners had the following changes:
- blood pressure was reduced
- LDL cholesterol was reduced
- performance was improved 6% (21 seconds) in the 1500 meter run
- performance was improved 4% (48 seconds--22:26 vs 23:07) in the 5K run
- VO2 max was improved 4%
The control group did not demonstrate these changes.
There is no way to translate this type of interval training to longer runs (half marathons or farther), based on their research. However, this concept of "run faster, run less" has an appeal for shorter races.