Base training gives runners a foundation of fitness in three major areas: aerobic capacity, strength, and neuromuscular coordination (or leg speed).
Aerobic capacity is built through easy mileage, long runs, and workouts like tempos, progressions, and fartleks.
Strength is also built with high mileage and long runs, but also includes strength routines and core workouts.
Neuromuscular coordination is built through strides, hill sprints, and small amounts of race-pace running.
Just like the foundation of a house can’t be built without concrete, plumbing, and reinforcements, you can’t build a running foundation without all of these ingredients. If you do, it’s not as strong as it could be.
But is the Maffetone Method effective for this phase of training? MAF as it's known has you run under your aerobic maximum heart rate at all times - which means all of your running will be quite slow.
In this discussion, Jason goes over the many priorities of base training and (hint, hint) why the Maffetone Method isn't ideal.