Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
I've been charting all my runs on coolrunnings.com. Its such a cool program - there is the best graphing feature where you can graph miles, time, pace, etc. I just love charts and graphs, and have gotten a bit obsessed with the whole thing. I've been trying to increase my pace and mileage at the same time, which frankly doesn't work.
So, last night I decided to "change things up at bit". I started out running at a super slow pace. I turned my treadmill display to the one that shows a quarter-mile track. With every lap I completed on the virtual track, I increased the pace just one tenth. I felt really good. It took me almost 40 minutes to complete a 3 mile run. But I could have run longer. And I suppose, to assure that I'm not overtraining, I should always feel like I could go longer at the end of a run.
I'm still feeling intimidated by the marathon, but at least I have a plan. I also signed up for a some races during my training to check my pace. I have a local 5k in June that I plan to run. In July, I signed up for a 10k, and a half-marathon in August. I'm especially excited for the 10k and half, because both routes will be similar to the marathon. Although obviously shorter, they both start high up in the mountains and end up in the valley - which is exactly how the marathon runs. Hopefully I'll be prepared.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
A running buddy of mine criticized me for not "cooling down" after a fiveK with an easy jog. I'm fairly new at racing and don't know anything about this. What advice can you give about the "cooldown"? Rick from Flower Mound
Your friend is correct that a good cooldown is helpful after a race, as a slightly elevated heart rate helps flush accumulated lactic acid, keeps you from stiffening up, and speeds recovery. But enough of that sports physiology mumbo jumbo. There is another reason why cooling down is important, and it has to do with your persona as a runner.
Face facts. In every race there are two groups of runners: those who finished ahead of you, and those who finished behind you. Who are the runners who finished ahead of you? They're lucky people who happened to have a good race that day. They're not necessarily faster or better than you, and with a bit more training you can beat them next week.
But more important, who are the people who finished behind you?
These runners have no business being in the same race with you, and you must make sure they know it. If not, you run the risk of having them come up to you later and try to talk, tell you about their race, or in a wild act of temerity attempt to befriend you. You must put a stop to this quickly so they know their place. And the perfect way to do this is in what I call the "Pro Cooldown."
Here is what you should do immediately after a hard fiveK. Grab a water bottle and jog the entire course again, so you get another 3 miles in. But here is the key: make absolutely sure you run the course from the finish line back to the start, not the other way around. This way you run opposite the lowlifes still out on the course, as an "in your face" reminder to them that you are top dog today.
To do this well, you must adopt an air of studied indifference to the people you pass. If you pass someone you know, for heaven's sake, don't yell, "Way to go!" or the nonsensical "Woo Hoo!" Instead, a low wave, flip of the hand as you go by is sufficient, if you bother at all. Act as if fast people seldom notice anyone slower.
There is one key exception. Let's say that purely by luck, someone is in the crowd of losers who has in the past beaten you in a race or two, a key rival you hate. Now the rule changes. For this competitor you must offer banal, yet chilling words of encouragement: "Go for it Mike!" "Hang in there Henry!" "Lookin' fine Mindi!" This appears to bolster their self-esteem, in the knowledge that you permit them to share the oxygen we all require. It is all the acknowledgement they need or in fact deserve, but more importantly it will drive them insane!
Here are three more techniques that have worked well for me. First, drink often from the water bottle so it appears you are running effortlessly. "Hey, I can drink, talk and run at the same time. How you doin'?"
Second, throw in some fast strides during the cooldown, but wait until you are about even with the middle of the loser pack, so you can show to the greatest number of people that you have plenty left. This says, "Sure, I ran hard today and beat you, but if I wanted to I could still run another hard mile. This is easy."
Third, find someone of about your own speed and finish place to cool down with, and spend the whole time chatting amiably about this and that, totally ignoring the others. Laugh a lot. They'll get the idea.
If you can incorporate the "Pro Cooldown" after every race, you will not only maintain fitness, but also show others "who's your daddy". Naturally I recount these rules and advice with this degree of accuracy in full recollection of the many times they have been used on me, your fellow back-of-the-packer. Good luck. Spareribs"
Thursday, May 10, 2007
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
So, the results were posted this morning. My brother and I both got in. Whooo hoo. I went from being totally excited, because I never win anything, to being totally freaked out - I'm going to RUN A MARATHON! UGH.
I've got a lot of training to do.
Last week, I'd sat down and done a daily training schedule from now to Marathon. I'd loosely followed Hal Higdon's schedule, but ever since worried that it may just be a bit too ambitious. Its a lot more miles than I run now, and it picks up quickly. I'm worried about becoming injured. Also, the longest run on his schedule is for 20 miles. A marathon is 26.2 miles people. I really want to try and run the full mileage at least once in training.
Then, I followed a link posted in my new favorite place: the forum on Coolrunning.com. The link took me to a 3-day marathon training schedule on the Jeff Galloway website. I think his plan is much more doable. It has 2 easy days, and then Saturday is the kick-butt long run day. Not only do I feel less likely to become injured following this plan, it fits my busy schedule better. I think it would be difficult to find 5 days to run a week. I like sleeping too much. Of course the Galloway plan is merely intended to train a person to simply finish a marathon.
G: I sleeped for a really long time and then I waked up but no one had to kiss me I just waked up all by myself without being kissed. Let's go kiss daddy to wake him up too.