Friday, January 11, 2008


Hopefully yesterday’s post was a little thought provoking. I got a few comments that I thought I would respond to here.

I think Andrew hit the nail on the head and did a better job explaining the topic when he said that you have to do something in order to improve. I tend to think that most people don’t run enough, so I focus on increasing mileage in order to improve. Others probably think I run too much and should mix in some speed.

Kirk mentioned only running about 20 mpw throughout the winter in order to avoid burnout. Maybe I should apply his approach one of these years – especially since 80% of my racing last year occurred in the first half of the year. I’m just concerned that if I drop to 20 mpw, I’ll like it too much and I’ll never build back up. I’ve seen too many people “take a break” – only to have it be a permanent break from exercise. And as Andrew stated, it’s taken him 12 weeks just to get back to where he was. I guess I prefer to be a little closer to racing fit than that.

Kel’s “simple” solution is the standard “find what works for you.” That sounds great, but with all the various combinations of speed, distance, long runs, hills, HR zones – not to mention flexibility, nutrition, strength, etc. – it may take me forever to find what works for me. Besides, I think part of finding what works for you is seeing what other people are doing. In high school I thought 20-25 mpw was a lot because that’s what everyone around me was doing. However, if someone had mentioned that the runners at so-and-so high school were running 40 mpw (or whatever number you want), maybe it would have opened my eyes a little more.

Anonymous brought up cross training and it made me wonder how many runners out there actually do it. I can’t think of any runners that I run with that do it unless they’re injured – and I’m not talking about the triathletes I train with. They cross train because they’re triathletes.

I’ll close the week with links to new journal entries by Kristen, Chris, and Andrew.

Quote of the day;

“In the past I have found it to be a desperate battle to find my limits, while at the same time trying to believe that I don’t have any. I am to the point now where I don’t think about limits anymore.” – Andrew Carlson


crossn81 said...

We were supposed to cross-train on Sunday's during college. A group of us got together and road bikes, nothing really intense but just a nice easy ride.

I've done it some post-college to help prevent injury. I've found that biking really helps with overall leg speed and turnover. I'm just never sure how to fit it into my schedule, but I'm going to try to do more biking and swimming this year.

Love2Run said...

"Do something different" that's the key. I might be one of those guys whose doing the same thing over and over 'hoping' for a better result. My plan for Boston this year is the same but hope to add some extras like more longer pace runs that will make a difference. If only work didn't keep getting in the way...

Anonymous said...

You have to take on the most you can endure to achieve your best. You have to sacrifice certain aspects of your life for a period, or at least compromise them to breakthrough. This is much more the case when one is older.

When time is a factor, (Church, Family, Work, Volunteering, etc.) you must spend it running. There won't be time to bike or swim or do some yoga on my schedule. Not because they are not beneficial, but because I will be out running.

Running to the point where you take extreme chances. There is a huge chance you won't survive your initial enthusiasm and you'll compromise. If you continue on your crash and burn program there is a huge chance you won't be healthy at the starting line. You'll run through sickness and severe back and joint pain, but you know it's either this or another year of sameness. You'll go to sleep thinking about running and you'll get up wondering what the hell has happened to your life. When your in the car your calculating racing strategies or find yourself occasionally searching for a calculator to check what certain splits look like. You'll look at other people when they are out running and say to yourself, "I'd bury you."

I doubt it looks any other way.