warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/bentomas_enr/ on line 34.

Easy Weeks

There comes a point in a training cycle where all the miles, intensity, and hard efforts start to take their toll. Maybe a runny nose or a cough is the result. Maybe it's sore knees, shin splints, or general aches. Or maybe the result of all the miles and stress is general irritability, lack of focus, and loss of drive.

Whatever the result, there is usually a common fix: an easy week.

Easy weeks are an important part of any training plan for many reasons.

It's Getting Hot In Here...

I would prefer running in the cold to the heat just about all the time. My attitude is this: you can always put more layers on, but you can only take so many off.

However, the reality is running at this time of year often means running in heat. Given that reality, I thought it would be a good idea to revisit some thoughts on running when it's hot.


There are some ideas that bear repeating. Whether easily forgotten, easily lost sight of, hard to learn, or just plain important, it is worth revisiting these ideas periodically.

Here is one such idea:

For things to change something has to change.

It doesn't matter whether we are referring to relationships, business, or fitness. More often than not the same actions will lead to the same results. If one is unhappy with one's results, one must change his or her actions.

Poor Workout Blues

It is easy to stay positive and optimistic when things are going well. When you're hitting your paces in workouts, getting in your miles, feeling strong, and having fun, running seems easy.

However, when a workout goes poorly, you miss a workout or mileage goal, and aches and pains start to creep in, it is easy to start to doubt, get frustrated, and stop having fun.

This past weekend I ran a target race pace workout. It was a big workout for me--the last hard one before the Bolder Boulder, and one I was hoping would be a confidence booster.

Getting On (The) Track

I love track.

I didn't always feel this way. I have always been a bigger fan of the sport of cross country than the sport of track. But, sometime in college I started to really enjoy running on a track.

Whether I was running a tactical race or a time trial, I grew to love the symmetry of the track. I loved being able to focus on my pace and my competition without worrying about tripping on a tree root, negotiating a sharp turn, or avoiding a mud hole.

For me, cross country was fun, but track was fast!

Gaining Speed Through Going Slow

It is something I have observed many times in my own running: when I get to 40 miles per week things change. It takes more to make me fatigued. I feel faster and stronger. I perform better in workouts and races.

In fact, this past November when I was training for a half marathon I wrote about my ideas on magic mileage.

Training Versus Racing

Today marks the 388th day in a row I have gone for a run. In those 388 days it seems like I have been reminded of the difference between running and training about every 45 days or so .

Over the last 388 days I came away from many of the races I have run feeling disappointed. Given my fitness I really thought I would perform better.

Winter Strength Training

Winter is a great time to focus on building strength. I have come to think of strength as coming in 2 different forms for runners.

First is running strength. Simply put, this is the strength gained from running on difficult, hilly, or often-turning routes.

Second is complimentary strength. This is the type of strength that is not as easily gained from running, but that helps us be able to run faster, farther, and avoid injury.

Winter can be a great time to work both types of strength.

Magic Mileage

Is it possible that there are mileage break points at which a runner will experience major gains in performance and fitness? What if 20 miles per week is about the same as 23, 25, or 27, but at 30 things change? Is there magic in hitting a certain mileage threshold that just doesn’t happen below that point?

These are the questions I have been asking myself this past week.

Last Sunday I went for one of the best runs I have had in recent memory. I felt amazing and was shocked by how fast I was moving and how easy it felt.

Hurdle Drills

At least twice a week I have my high school runners do a series of walking hurdle drills at the end of practice. From feedback received in our post-season evaluation it became apparent many of my runners did not understand the point of these drills. From watching the form of some of my runners as they did our hurdle drills, this honestly is not a surprise.

So, what is the reason behind these drills?

Syndicate content