Why runners should include strength training

When I begin working with a new client I always ask them about the ancillary training components they are currently doing, including strength training. (Read my previous post on Ancillary Components in your run training) Most of the time, these athletes are doing very little to none.  This is a large area for improvement and it doesn’t have to be too time consuming or difficult to build in.

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As I have mentioned many times in previous posts, when you are training you are applying a stress/stimulus to the body. It is a controlled amount of micro-damage.  When the body recovers it adapts, or super-compensates so that it is stronger than before the damage occurred.  This is similar to what happens when you develop a scar.  Strength training applies a different stimulus to your body, meaning you receive a different kind of physiological benefit.  Making your training more well rounded and you a stronger and more resilient runner.

Strength training is an important component in a solid, comprehensive training plan for both injury prevention and performance reasons.  Many runners have the misconception that strength training involves bulking up, gaining weight which will then make them slower.  This is simply, misguided information.

Strength training is first, a key component to injury prevention. Think Pre-Hab verse Re-hab. Building in strength training can address improper running mechanics and muscle imbalances that could lead to injuries in a training cycle.  Running involves a lot of repetitive motion, so imbalances and weaknesses get exploited over and over again in every single run.

img_1009Strength training can also help improve speed and running economy, for many reasons.  Running is a complex repetitive motion.  A collaborative movement of muscles that involve pushing the body off the ground, through  a repetitive force applied to the ground. Simply put, the more force applied to the ground, the more the body is propelled forward. By increasing strength, you can simply increase the applied force during the running motion.

Along with the increased force, the body becomes more economical during strength training.  Meaning, the body can more effectively utilize oxygen.  An increase in running economy is a key factor for endurance training.  If you want to learn more about running economy check out my previous post, Understanding Running Economy

Many people get into running to loose weight, and strength training can be a great way to lower total body fat percentages.  Runners who rely on cutting calories and running will often see a decline in performance and other negative factors like increase illness and fatigue.  Often times, they also see little to no results toward their weight loss goal, or the weight loss only sees short term results.  Building in strength training and adequately fueling can be a much better, long term approach, to healthy weight loss.  Strength training will help with preventing muscle degradation and also help with the bodies ability to utilize fuel more efficiently.

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Adding in strength training is similar to beginning a new running plan. It doesn’t need to be complicated but should be challenging.  As you continue to improve, the training should progress so that you continue to progress in your results.  Many of my runners will start with a progression of body weight strength training components that eventually leads into more complex exercises that progresses to basic lifting exercises and then into compound lifts.

I have had the pleasure of working with some great strength coaches through my training. A couple of them had very different approaches on how to implement strength training alongside a run training plan.  My biggest take away is more is not always better. I believe strongly that ancillary training should NOT negatively impact the run training that is the foundation of your training program.  Begin slowly and utilize training that compliments, not competes with your running.

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Need a coach to help you reach your running goals?

VDot certified! I am a VDot  Certified coach with over 11 years of coaching experience! I have worked with young beginners in the middle school level, high school athletes who have gone on to compete at national Division I championships, and adults runners of all abilities.   For more information click here

Runderwear Product Review

I’ll admit, I am normally team commando when it comes to running.  However I was excited to try out underwear made specifically for running. Because running in your cotton britches from Target are a recipe for discomfort!   Below are the key selling points that had me excited to try RunderWear (Information pulled directly from Runderwear marketing)

  • CHAFE-FREE – Using all of our award winning RUNDERWEAR technology, including functional flatlock edging, results in underwear that always performs when you do – chafe-free, guaranteed.
  • BREATHABLE & MOISTURE-WICKING – Micro-perforations manage airflow to improve breathability, while technical fabric wicks moisture and sweat away from the skin fast to keep you dry and comfortable.
  • SEAMLESS, PREMIUM COMFORT – Constructed using 360° seamless technology means tag free, seamless underwear – creating less irritation and the ultimate experience in both comfort and performance.
  • ERGONOMICALLY DESIGNED – The RUNDERWEAR range is ergonomically engineered to fit your body shape and move as you move – providing you with maximum support to deliver results mile after mile.
  • LIGHTWEIGHT & DURABLE – Our fabric is colour retaining and non-fading, and innovatively designed to be lightweight and very durable so that your underwear will always go the distance with you

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My Experience

I was sent a pair of the Women’s Hipster Runderwear. I was able to try out the Runderwear on 3 different runs.  Usually, I will try a product more than that, but I did need time to wash them between runs. So, how did they feel? The short answer, nonexistent.  I though there would be some adjustment as I am normally wearing….less, on my runs.  However, the light weight materials and breath-ability lives up to its marketing.

The breath-ability, moisture-wicking material will be awesome in the hot and humid summer months.  The Runderwear performance was best with looser fitting shorts.  I tried them with my typical fitted/compression shorts, some loose fitting  shorts with a  liner and some shorts with no liner.  The difference with a liner and without a liner was not noticeable at all.  I think shorts that allow some breathe-ability are the key to taking advantage of the technical material.

One of the issues I did have while running in my Runderwear is the top of the Runderwear came up higher than my typical running shorts. I will admit, I prefer low-rise running shorts so the easy solution would be to try out the hipster low-rise version next time.  A plus side, however, is the seamless design.  They didn’t just work well with my running clothes, it was perfect in my work apparel too!  A great option for runners like me who have to go straight from the “office” ( or in my case, classroom) to running .

img_2617Runderwear has products for both men and women, and different styles/cuts for each. For women there are the regular hipsters that I tested, as well as a low-rise variety.  There is also thong, brief and boy short option.  They also have other undergarment items such as socks and sports bra.

Want to try Runderwear yourself? Use discount code “BIBRAVE20” for 20% off. Valid until Friday, May 31 May.

Keep up with Runderwear on social media!

IG: @TeamRunderwear

TW: @runderwear

“Disclaimer: I received an Runderwear to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!”

Weekly Discount Round up! -Friday, May 17th, 2019

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As a BibRave Pro I have the awesome opportunity to try and review running related products and races and share my experiences with readers. Along with the trial the brands and races will often provide a discount code for promotional purposes. Find all of the current BibRave Brand and BibRave Race discounts by following the links below!

Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews!

BibRave Brand Discount Codes

AfterShokz – Visit bibrave.aftershokz.com and use code “BRBUNDLE” for $50 off the Adventure Bundle.

Shady Rays – Use code “RAVE” for 50% off 2 or more pairs from the Shade Shop.

Orange Mud – Use code “BIBRAVEGVPRO” for 15% off all Orange Mud gear

Runderwear – Use code “BIBRAVE20” for 20% off. Valid until Friday 31 May.

Ultima – Use code “ULBRAVE19″ for 10% off at the amazon.com/shops/ultimareplenisher storefront

Knockaround – Use code “BIBRAVEKNOCKS2” for 20% OFF the entire order. Coupon active: 6/15 to 7/15. Limited to one use per user.

 

BibRave Race Discount Codes

May 2019

5/18/2019 – Harper’s Ferry Half Marathon – Harper’s Ferry, WV

Use code “BIBRAVE5WV” for $5 off!

 

5/18/2019 – Ogden Marathon – Ogden, UT

Use code “OGDEN19” for $10 off FULL or HALF.

 

5/19/2019 – Byline Bank Chicago Spring Half Marathon – Chicago, IL

Use code “BRCHISPRING19” for $10 off half/$5 off 10K!

 

5/25/2019 – Run Madtown presented by SSM Health – Madison, WI

Use code “RAVENSAVE” for 10% off (excludes kid’s race).

 

5/25/2019 – Soldier Field 10-miler

Use code “BRSOLDIER19” for a FREE stainless steel water bottle!

 

5/25/2019 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Liverpool – Liverpool

Use codes:

“BRPLIVMAR19” for £7 off Marathon

“BRPLIVHALF19” for £5 off Half Marathon

“BRPLIV5K19” for £2 off 5K

 

5/26/2019 – Vermont City Marathon – Burlington, VT

Use code “BibRave10” for $10 off!

June 2019

6/1-2/2019 – North Olympic Discovery Marathon – Port Angeles, WA

Use code “BibRave629” for 5% off!

 

6/1/2019 – Hospital Hill Run – Kansas City, MO

Use code “BIBRAVE19” for 10% off!

 

6/1-2/2019 – Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego – San Diego, CA

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

6/2/2019 – Run for the Zoo – Chicago, IL

Use code “BIBRAVE” for 10% off!

 

6/2/2019 – North Shore Half Classic – Chicago, IL

Use code “BRNS19” for a FREE stainless steel water bottle!

 

6/8/2019 – The Governor’s Cup – Helena, MT

Use code “GovCupRave19” for 10% off!

 

6/8-9/2019 – St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle – Seattle, WA

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

6/9/2019 –  DC Wonder Woman Run Series – Chicago – Gurnee, IL

Use code “WWBIBRAVE” – good for 10% off across all events!

 

6/22/2019 –  DC Wonder Woman Run Series – Kansas City, MO

Use code “WWBIBRAVE” – good for 10% off across all events!

 

6/22/2019 – Grandma’s Marathon – Duluth, MN

Use code “BIBRAVE10” for $10 off!

 

6/22/2019 – Big Foot Tri – Lake Geneva, WI

Use code “BRBFT19” for a FREE stainless steel water bottle!

 

6/22/2019 – I Love the 90’s 5K Run Chicago – Chicago, IL

Use code “BR90S” for $5 off!

 

6/28-30/2019 – Missoula Marathon – Missoula, MT

Use code “BibRave19” for $5 off!

 

6/29/2019 –  DC Wonder Woman Run Series – Fargo

Use code “WWBIBRAVE” – good for 10% off across all events!

July 2019

 

7/4/2019 – Red, White & Boom! TC Half Marathon & 5K – Minneapolis, MN

Use code “18RWBBIBRAVE” – this code is valid for 5% off the entry fee for the first 50 people to sign up with this code. This code expires on July 3 at 6:00 p.m. or after 50 uses has been reached.

 

7/13/2019 – I Love the 90’s 5K Run Grand Rapids – Grand Rapids, MI

Use code “BR90S” for $5 off!

 

7/14/2019 –  DC Wonder Woman Run Series – Denver

Use code “WWBIBRAVE” – good for 10% off across all events!

 

7/14/2019 –  San Diego Craft Classic Half Marathon & 5K – San Diego, CA

Use codes:

“BIBRAVE5” for $5 off the of the 5K

“BIBRAVE10” for $10 off the Half Marathon

 

7/20-21/2019 – New Jersey State Triathlon – West Windsor, NJ

Use code “NJSTBR10” for 15% off.

 

7/20-21/2019 – Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago – Chicago, IL

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

7/24/2019 – Downtown Westfield 5K & Pizza Extravaganza – Westfield, NJ

Use code “WESTFIELDBR19” for exclusive BibRave pricing of $32!

 

7/24/2019 – Life Time Torchlight 5K – Minneapolis, MN

Use code “RUNWITHFIRE19” for 10% off registration!

August 2019

8/10-11/2019 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Dublin

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

8/11/2019 – Oaktown Half Marathon – Oakland, CA

Use code “BROAKVIP” for 10% off.

 

8/17/2019 – Madison Mini-Marathon Half Marathon & 5K – Madison, WI

Use code “BIBRAVE5” for $5 off.

 

8/23/2019 –  I Love the 90’s 5K Run Oklahoma City – Oklahoma City, OK

Use code “BR90S” for $5 off!

 

8/24/-25/2019 – Santa Rosa Marathon – Santa Rosa, CA

Use code “SAVE10″ for 10% off!

 

8/25/2019 – Fort2Base – Fort Sheridan, IL

Use code “BRP19” for 10% off (effective 2/1)

 

8/31- 9/1/2019 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

September 2019

9/6-8/2019 – San Francisco Giant Race presented by Alaska Airlines – San Francisco, CA

Use code “WERUNSF19” for $10 off!

 

9/7/2019 –  DC Wonder Woman Run Series – Salt Lake City

Use code “WWBIBRAVE” – good for 10% off across all events!

 

9/7/2019 – Run Mag Mile – Chicago, IL

Use code “BIBRM19” for a FREE stainless steel water bottle!

 

9/14/2019- Zooma Women’s Race Series  – Great Lakes – Lake Geneva, WI

Use code “ZOOMABR15” for 15% off race events!

 

9/14-15/2019 – Nautica Malibu Triathlon –  Malibu, CA

Use code “MALIBUBR10” for 10% off.

 

9/15/2019 – Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll Philadelphia

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

9/21-22/2019 – Surf City 10 – Huntington Beach, CA

Use code “SC10BR10” for 15% off.

 

9/21-22/2019 – Oasis Rock ‘n’ Roll Montréal

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

9/28/2019 – Brewers Mini Marathon – Milwaukee, WI

Use code “BV19” for $10 off the Half Marathon or 10K!

 

9/28/2019 – I Love the 90’s 5K Run Nashville – Nashville, TN

Use code “BR90S” for $5 off!

 

9/29/2019 – Chicago Half Marathon & 5K – Chicago, IL

Use code “BRCHIHALF19” for $10 off the Half, $5 off the 5K.

 

9/29/2019- Zooma Women’s Race Series  – Cape Cod – Falmouth, MA

Use code “ZOOMABR15” for 15% off race events!

October 2019

10/5/2019 – Bellin Women’s Half Marathon – Green Bay, WI

Use code “BibRave19” for $5 off!

 

10/5-6/2019 – Michelob Ultra Rock ‘n’ Roll San Jose

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

10/6/2019 –  DC Wonder Woman Run Series – Seattle

Use code “WWBIBRAVE” – good for 10% off across all events!

 

10/6/2019 – Bucktown 5k – Chicago, IL

Use code “BRBT19” for a FREE stainless steel water bottle!

 

10/6/2019 – Freedom’s Run – Shepherdstown, WV

Use code “BIBRAVE5WV” for $5 off!

 

10/11-13/2019 –  jetBlue Long Beach Marathon & Half Marathon – Long Beach, CA

Use code “LBMBR10” for 15% off.

 

10/13/2019 – Bank of America Chicago America – Team in Training – Chicago, IL

Use code “CHIBIBRAVE” for a free Team In Training registration ($100 value)

 

10/18-19/2019 – Runner’s World Half & Festival – Bethlehem, PA

Use code “RWHALFBIBRAVE19” for 15% off any race distance.

 

10/19/2019 – Pumpkins in the Park – Chicago, IL

Use code “BRP19” for a FREE stainless steel water bottle!

 

10/19-20/2019 – Urban Bourbon Half Marathon presented by Jim Beam – Louisville, KY

Use code “BourbonRave2019” for 10% off (starting Feb. 1)!

 

10/19-20/2019- Zooma Women’s Race Series  – Amelia Island – Amelia Island, FL

Use code “ZOOMABR15” for 15% off race events!

 

10/19-20/2019 – Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll Denver

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

10/19-20/2019 – Detroit Free Press/Chemical Bank Marathon – Detroit, MI

Use code “2019DETROCKS” for 10% off!

 

10/19/2019 – Kansas City Marathon – Kansas City, MO

Use code “BIBRAVE2019KCM” for 15% off!

 

10/20/2019 – Bull City Race Fest and Food Truck Rodeo – Durham, NC

Use code “BCRFBR10” for 10% off.

 

10/20/2019 – First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon – Sarasota, FL

Use code “BRSARASOTA19” for $10 off half and relay and $5 off 10K!

 

10/20/2019 – IMT Des Moines Marathon – Des Moines, IA

Use code “dmmbibrave2019” for $10 discount on the following races: IMT Des Moines Marathon, IMT Des Moines Half Marathon, 5-Mile Run + Marathon, 5-Mile Run + Half Marathon.

 

10/26/2019 – Healdsburg Wine Country Half Marathon (Destination Races) – Geyserville, CA

Use code “HEALDSBR10” for 10% off!

 

10/27/2019 – Marine Corps Marathon & MCM 10K – Team in Training- Washington, DC

Use code “MCMBIBRAVE” for a free Team In Training registration ($100 value)

 

November 2019

11/2/2019 – Mushroom Cap Half Marathon – Kennett Square, PA

Use code “brmushroom19” for $10 off!

 

11/1-2/2019- Zooma Women’s Race Series  – Texas Wine Country – Fredericksburg, TX

Use code “ZOOMABR15” for 15% off race events!

 

11/2-3/2019 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Savannah

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

11/3/2019 – TCS New York City Marathon – Team in Training Campaign – NYC, NY

Use code “NYCBIBRAVE” for a free Team In Training registration ($100 value)

 

11/10/2019 – Madison Marathon – Madison, WI

Use code “BRMSN19” for 10% off the half or full marathon!

 

11/10/2019 – Honor Run – Florence, KY

Use code “BibRave15” for $15 off any event!

 

11/16-17/2019 – Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

11/28/2019 – North Shore Turkey Trot – Highland Park, IL

Use code “BRNSTT19” for a FREE stainless steel water bottle!

 

11/28/2019 – Art Van Turkey Trot Chicago- Chicago, IL

Use code “TURKEY2019” for 10% off!

 

11/28/2019 – Turkey Day 5K Minneapolis – Minneapolis, MN

Use code “TURKEY2019” for 10% off!

December 2019

 

12/7-8/2019 – Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll San Antonio

Use code “19RNRBRP16” for $16 off half/marathon.

Use code “19RNRBRP6” for $6 off shorter distances.

 

12/8/19 – Honolulu Marathon – Honolulu, HI

Use code “BIBHNL19” for 10% off!

 

January 2020

 

1/18-1/19/2020 – Marathon Bahamas (Sunshine Insurance Race Weekend) – Bahamas

Use code “MBSPECIAL” for 10% off!

 

1/19/20 – Key West Half Marathon & 5K – Key West, FL

Use code “BIBRAVE20” for 20% off half marathon.

What is BibRave?

BibRave is a running community that connects runners with the best races. It’s the place to research races you’re considering signing up for, and a place to leave feedback on races you’ve completed. BibRave is also a way for races and running brands to connect with socially savvy runners – through our popular weekly Twitter chat, #BibChat, and our large ambassador network – BibRave Pros. The list below captures all of the current active BibRave partner brand discount codes. Use the codes below to receive discounts on products from our partner brands. Visit https://www.bibrave.com/ for more information and contact info@bibrave.com with any questions!

What are strides, and why you should be including them in your run training.

In my previous post Ancillary Components in your run training, I discussed little things you can add to your run training program that make a big difference. One of those things I feel all healthy runners can include in their training program is strides.

What are strides?

Simply put, strides are controlled burst of speed that an athlete runs for about 10-30 seconds.  Sometimes measured by distances between 50 meters -150 meters  Strides are meant to be fast, but run under a controlled effort.  They are not all out sprints.  While completing strides, a runner should focus on proper running mechanics.  This is not meant to be a difficult addition to the workout and shouldn’t really add additional fatigue.img_1414

 

Why should you include strides?

Strides are simple and take a relatively short amount of time to see the benefits. The primary benefit to strides is an improvement in running economy.    They can be used to develop good running form and build strength that allows you to run faster with less effort.  This is especially true when paired with a training plan that pairs strides with form drills and strength training. (Check out my previous post on Ancillary Components in your run training )

How to run strides?

While completing strides the runner should be focused on good running mechanics. This includes good posture and running with a slight 1-2 degree lean forward.  Strides should feel controlled, avoid tensing up.  Utilize your arms to drive your leg action, pumping your arms hard to increase the speed.  Move your arms in a front to back motion, avoid crossing the mid-line and any unnecessary rotation of you trunk.  Typically, a flat surface is ideal location for strides.  Parking lots and grass fields are great choices.  My high school athletes love kicking off their shoes and getting in some barefoot strides after a run.

If you have a quality training session (speed work) try getting in a few strides as part of the warm up process. It’s a great transition from the easy warm up jog to the faster work ahead. Another option is to add in strides after easy runs, strides are a great way to change up the leg turn over with out building fatigue and continuing your active recovery.

Need a coach to help you reach your running goals?

VDot certified!I am a VDot  Certified coach with over 11 years of coaching experience! I have worked with young beginners in the middle school level, high school athletes who have gone on to compete at national Division I championships, and adult runners of all abilities.   For more information click here

Ancillary Components in your run training

Wanna know the secret to a good run training plan, hard work and consistency. Yep, that’s it. It’s not magical, there is not some top secret formula . Even with the best laid plans. The coach or plan, will not work if you don’t. No magic bullet. No secret workout. No magic number. Consistent sound training over a duration of time will allow the body to absorb new stimulus, adapt and continue to improve.  There are some solid training principals that most of your top level coaches follow along with training practices that will aid in injury prevention and sustainability. Understanding the bodies reaction to stress and how we can  apply stress to run training without overloading and causing injury is the foundation for any solid coaching plan.

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I am a student of the sport. Eager to learn and grow as both a runner and coach. As A Vdot certified coach I have taken the time to study and follow the work of legendary coach Jack Daniels. However, I try not to get stuck in a box. What works for one athlete may not have the same affect on another. I think there is value in learning from the coaches that come before him and after him. Following athletes who train under his philosophies and those training in ways different to his principals.

I just finished Running With Lydiard.  A book about a world renown coach, way before his time. Compared to the structured, time restricted philosophies of Jack Daniels, it would seem that these coaches come from completely different corners. When you really hone in on Lydiard’s training philosophies, however, it’s the same idea. He values the training stimulus.  Like Daniels, asking athletes to train at their current ability, not training toward where they are going. For him, he takes a much less structured approach, but he also worked with a clientele that is on a much more elite level. I think this understanding of perceived effort and perception of reaching the desired training stimulus that Lydiard’s book includes would be difficult for newer and younger athletes.    I also believe one of the reasons Jack Daniels training principals are so widely used, is the ease at which it can be adapted and understood by a large variety of runners . This is especially true with his later versions of the book. Again, there are definitely some distinct difference between these two widely famous coaches, the underlying principals, are still there.  Train with purpose in mind every day, for every run.  Train at your current fitness level in order to reach the fitness level you want to achieve. 

 

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Photo by Leon Martinez on Pexels.com

When designing a training plan, I like to think of the running, nutrition and recovery as the foundation of the training plan.  They are must have items.  Without that foundation the rest of the items don’t matter.  Progress will more than likely be minimal, at best.  Once the foundation is set, I begin to build in the ancillary components; strides, hill sprints, dynamic warm ups, form drills and strength.  Just like running each has a specific purpose. so do these ancillary pieces.

As a teacher, mother, wife, coach and business owner, I understand the busy life of many of my adult runners and high school athletes. When designing a training plan  and assigning ancillary training components beyond the mileage. I ask myself, is this important? Is this worth my athletes time? What am I trying to gain?   Can I gain a similar training affect more efficiently. img_2277

 

These ancillary items are  important for runners of all levels. Just like your run training, those little things add up.With consistency and a relatively short amount of additional time those other components can help make a runner stronger, faster, more economical and more injury resistant.  (Check out my post on Understanding Running Economy) Athletes who are consistent with these items can usually build mileage quicker and they can handle high quality sessions more readily.  They also recover better.  With just running, the muscular-skeletal system does not develop as quickly as the cardiovascular system.  These ancillary components address that limiting factor creating at more well rounded runner.  There is one constant; runners who are healthy, train better, are more consistent and more importantly enjoy running much more.

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Next week I will be follow up each day breaking down some of those key ancillary training components that I like to prescribe for my athletes.  I look forward to sharing rationale for each along with some guidance to go you start.  Be sure to subscribe so that you can follow along!

 

 

Catch up on yesterdays post! Understanding Running Economy

Need a coach to help you reach your running goals?

VDot certified! I am a VDot  Certified coach with over 11 years of coaching experience! I have worked with young beginners in the middle school level, high school athletes who have gone on to compete at national Division I championships, and adults runners of all abilities.   For more information click here

 

 

 

 

Understanding Running Economy

I’m not going to lie. I really nerd out when I get to teach my middle school kiddos concepts that I can relate to running, or exercising in some way . We have been recently learning about how our body converts food energy into a usable form of energy called adenine triphosphate, or ATP. This process is called cellular respiration.img_2269

Our body goes through two types of cellular respiration, aerobic and anaerobic. Most adults have heard of the two different types of exercises before. Aerobic respiration occurs when the body uses oxygen while anaerobic occurs without the use of  oxygen. The difference is mostly dependent on the pace and duration you are going when you are exercising.

The difference also breaks down the different types of fuel the body can use as fuel and how quickly. This can help a weight conscious runner fuel more effectively and still maintain energy through the training cycle. This can also help runners understand running economy.

What is running economy?

selective focus photography of gasoline nozzle
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

An overly simplified analogy, commonly used,to understand running economy is fuel economy of a car. Which is, how much fuel it takes to get your car to travel a specific distance. The difference is the fuel used when talking about running economy is calories and oxygen. As both are ingredients for the same aerobic process for cellular respiration they are fairly interchangeable and most often the consumption of oxygen is the primary focus. However, there can be some slight variation depending on the fuel source being used, such as carbohydrates being easier to break down than fat.  That is why endurance athletes will turn to simple sugars for mid race fuel,  because it is a more economical fuel source .

Why is it important?

Running economy is a measurable factor that plays a role in performance outcome . Essentially, the more economical a runner is at a given speed the better they become. There are of course other factors, both physiological and psychological that will play in the outcome of an athletes performance.img_1265

Running economy is often looked at alongside a runners VO2 max . Which is another measurable factor the plays a role in performance outcome. If you have two runners A&B, both having the same VO2 max, but runner B has a better running economy. Most likely, runner B will also have a better performance than runner A. The difference is seen in greater proportions in the long distance races verse middle distance.

 

Can you improve running economy?

Absolutely! Simple things like increasing a runners mileage base can improve running economy. One training aspect often neglected or even avoided by runners is strength training, which is an excellent way to improve running economy.  Greatly undervalued and non-time consuming form drills , strides and short intervals are other great ways to improve running economy.   The development of running economy can be quite simple or complex depending on the need of the individual runner.

Thank you so much for reading! Be sure to subscribe for more great information!

 

Need a coach to help you reach your running goals?

VDot certified! I am a VDot  Certified coach with over 11 years of coaching experience! I have worked with young beginners in the middle school level, high school athletes who have gone on to compete at national Division I championships, and adults runners of all abilities.   For more information click here

 

Understanding Running Economy

I’m not going to lie. I really nerd out when I get to teach my middle school kiddos concepts that I can relate to running, or exercising in some way . We have been recently learning about how our body converts food energy into a usable form of energy called adenine triphosphate, or ATP. This process is called cellular respiration.img_2269

Our body goes through two types of cellular respiration, aerobic and anaerobic. Most adults have heard of the two different types of exercises before. Aerobic respiration occurs when the body uses oxygen while anaerobic occurs without the use of  oxygen. The difference is mostly dependent on the pace and duration you are going when you are exercising.

The difference also breaks down the different types of fuel the body can use as fuel and how quickly. This can help a weight conscious runner fuel more effectively and still maintain energy through the training cycle. This can also help runners understand running economy.

What is running economy?

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An overly simplified analogy, commonly used,to understand running economy is fuel economy of a car. Which is, how much fuel it takes to get your car to travel a specific distance. The difference is the fuel used when talking about running economy is calories and oxygen. As both are ingredients for the same aerobic process for cellular respiration they are fairly interchangeable and most often the consumption of oxygen is the primary focus. However, there can be some slight variation depending on the fuel source being used, such as carbohydrates being easier to break down than fat.  That is why endurance athletes will turn to simple sugars for mid race fuel,  because it is a more economical fuel source .

Why is it important?

Running economy is a measurable factor that plays a role in performance outcome . Essentially, the more economical a runner is at a given speed the better they become. There are of course other factors, both physiological and psychological that will play in the outcome of an athletes performance.img_1265

Running economy is often looked at alongside a runners VO2 max . Which is another measurable factor the plays a role in performance outcome. If you have two runners A&B, both having the same VO2 max, but runner B has a better running economy. Most likely, runner B will also have a better performance than runner A. The difference is seen in greater proportions in the long distance races verse middle distance.

 

Can you improve running economy?

Absolutely! Simple things like increasing a runners mileage base can improve running economy. One training aspect often neglected or even avoided by runners is strength training, which is an excellent way to improve running economy.  Greatly undervalued and non-time consuming form drills , strides and short intervals are other great ways to improve running economy.   The development of running economy can be quite simple or complex depending on the need of the individual runner.

Thank you so much for reading! Be sure to subscribe for more great information!

 

Need a coach to help you reach your running goals?

VDot certified! I am a VDot  Certified coach with over 11 years of coaching experience! I have worked with young beginners in the middle school level, high school athletes who have gone on to compete at national Division I championships, and adults runners of all abilities.   For more information click here

 

Running tips for rainy weather

Yesterday I gave a super short post on the benefits of heading outside in less than ideal conditions for a training run. Train for the worst, so you can run your best!  Whether your goal race is Boston Marathon or a smaller scaled local race. You are taking time to prepare for that race and you should develop skills that make you a more well rounded runner. Practicing in the elements allows you to be prepared for a variety of race days conditions along with making you a mentally stronger runner no matter what race day brings.  So put on your big girl ( or big boy) pants and run in the rain!

Here are some tips to make running in the rain, more enjoyable.

  • Wear a slicker! A vented rain jacket that will allow air to flow through while also keeping you dry. These things can trap a lot of body heat as you get running, so don’t worry about finding one that offers any sort of warmth or insulation. You will not want that additional warmth during a warm summer rain.
  • Dress for the temperatures-  It easy to see the cooler rain and want to add an on extra layers. However, you will warm up, the rain jacket will trap in your body heat and you begin sweating, it will only make the problem worse.  Dress as you would for the weather, if it were not raining, and then add on your shell/slicker.
  • Keep your head dry!   Wear a hat with a brim to keep your head dry and water out of your eyes while you are running. If it’s raining a bit harder and you have a slicker, pull the hood up as well.
  • Be Visible!  It’s always a good idea for runners to think about visibility for safety reasons, but it is even more imperative when it is raining and visibility is lowered.  My rain jacket is bright orange, its not a fashion statement.
  • Say no to chaffing! Pre-lube/Body Glide up any areas that have caused issue in the past. Just in case, I carry a Chapstick size body lube in my flip belt when on longer runs so that I can touch up any hot spots.
  • Take care of your feet.  While shoes are usually the star of the show, in rainy weather it is all about the socks.   Avoid cotton and stick with socks that are specifically designed for running.  I absolutely love my Swiftwick socks on rainy days. They are thinner and have never caused an issue.
  • Ditch the electronics. Even the best laid plans can fail. My sweet husband put his phone in a Ziplock bag and water still managed to get in and ruin his phone.  I am pretty sure I assured him it would be fine, too.
  • Change immediately after your run. Even if you aren’t cold yet,  as your body temperature cools back down you will get cold very quickly.  A nice warm shower will do wonders, also.
  • Consider loops- On long rainy runs, I will complete shorter loops allowing me to dress or undress as the weather changes. Change socks or shoes if any blisters start creeping in and towel off my face or anything else to keep the run more comfortable.
  • Most importantly, Have fun!  Bring back the inner child and have a little bit of fun with it.  Toward the end of your run splash in a few puddles and pretend the rain drops are lemon drops and gum drops.  Choose to have a great run!

 

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What are your favorite running weather conditions? What are your least favorite conditions? Comment below!  If you enjoy the content, check out some of my other posts! Be sure to subscribe for more!

 

 

Need a coach to help you reach your running goals?

VDot certified! I am a VDot  Certified coach with over  10 years of coaching experience! I have worked with young beginners in the middle school level, high school athletes who have gone on to compete at national Division I championships, and adults runners of all abilities.   For more information about customized training plans or private coaching opportunities click here  for pricing and package check it out here

 

Train for the worst, so you can run your best!

Rain, wind, snow and yo-yo temperatures.  It seems like we experienced all four seasons in the 48 hour weekend here in KC. The only thing predictable about Midwest weather, is that it is quite unpredictable.  So while many athletes are taking it indoors.  As long as safety isn’t compromised, I encourage my athletes to head outdoors and brave the elements most of the time.   Train through the worst conditions, so on race day, you can run your best.

When you are prepared for everything, you will be scared of nothing.  Now that it is April and we are nearing Marathon Monday (Boston Marathon).  What a better example of goal races with less than ideal weather conditions.  I had a great number of friends in attendance last year many with stories of triumphs and some with stories of misery.  Ok, maybe a few whose story included both.

Some runners were prepared, mentally tough and forged through gross conditions with new PRs or remarkable stories of overcoming adverse conditions. Not to mention huge bragging rights to saying they were at the historic 2018 Boston Marathon.

It’s not a complete correlation, but athletes who are willing to go out in less than ideal conditions and avoid making excuses during training.  They will fair far better when things go wrong on race day. It’s a little bit about learning to run in those weather conditions and much more about building mental fortitude. There are races that will be hotter than ideal, raining, windy or freezing.  Prepare yourself for all possibilities and remember every chance to run is a chance to get better!

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Running in crappy weather gives you bragging rights as well! Some of the times my running friends laugh the hardest about are the crappy weather days.  My friend Ben and I ran into ice pelting us in the face, what seemed no matter what direction we ran.  With a bit of morbid sarcasm me manged through and frequently joke about our match with the ninja star snow.

Last summer I had a run, that for some reason I was absolutely dreading.  With heavy winds and rain forecasted, I wanted to do anything else but run.  It took some serious will power to get started and I reflect back on that run as a break through run for me. I ran fast and felt good after a bit of a stale period. Subsequent runs went remarkable well, also.  It may have been just the mental break from ungodly heat that I needed.

So get outside and face the challenge. When you are done, raise your head proud because you are a bad ass runner!

I have already posted tips for running in the winter. Check it out!  I plan to follow up with tips for running in the rain tomorrow, training tips for the heat later this week and then how and when to adjust your workouts when it is windy.

 

Need a coach to help you reach your running goals?

VDot certified! I am a VDot  Certified coach with over  10 years of coaching experience! I have worked with young beginners in the middle school level, high school athletes who have gone on to compete at national Division I championships, and adults runners of all abilities.   For more information about customized training plans or private coaching opportunities click here  for pricing and package check it out here

Train for the worst, so you can run your best!

Rain, wind, snow and yo-yo temperatures.  It seems like we experienced all four seasons in the 48 hour weekend here in KC. The only thing predictable about Midwest weather, is that it is quite unpredictable.  So while many athletes are taking it indoors.  As long as safety isn’t compromised, I encourage my athletes to head outdoors and brave the elements most of the time.   Train through the worst conditions, so on race day, you can run your best.

When you are prepared for everything, you will be scared of nothing.  Now that it is April and we are nearing Marathon Monday (Boston Marathon).  What a better example of goal races with less than ideal weather conditions.  I had a great number of friends in attendance last year many with stories of triumphs and some with stories of misery.  Ok, maybe a few whose story included both.

Some runners were prepared, mentally tough and forged through gross conditions with new PRs or remarkable stories of overcoming adverse conditions. Not to mention huge bragging rights to saying they were at the historic 2018 Boston Marathon.

It’s not a complete correlation, but athletes who are willing to go out in less than ideal conditions and avoid making excuses during training.  They will fair far better when things go wrong on race day. It’s a little bit about learning to run in those weather conditions and much more about building mental fortitude. There are races that will be hotter than ideal, raining, windy or freezing.  Prepare yourself for all possibilities and remember every chance to run is a chance to get better!

img_2230-1

Running in crappy weather gives you bragging rights as well! Some of the times my running friends laugh the hardest about are the crappy weather days.  My friend Ben and I ran into ice pelting us in the face, what seemed no matter what direction we ran.  With a bit of morbid sarcasm me manged through and frequently joke about our match with the ninja star snow.

Last summer I had a run, that for some reason I was absolutely dreading.  With heavy winds and rain forecasted, I wanted to do anything else but run.  It took some serious will power to get started and I reflect back on that run as a break through run for me. I ran fast and felt good after a bit of a stale period. Subsequent runs went remarkable well, also.  It may have been just the mental break from ungodly heat that I needed.

So get outside and face the challenge. When you are done, raise your head proud because you are a bad ass runner!

I have already posted tips for running in the winter. Check it out!  I plan to follow up with tips for running in the rain tomorrow, training tips for the heat later this week and then how and when to adjust your workouts when it is windy.

 

Need a coach to help you reach your running goals?

VDot certified! I am a VDot  Certified coach with over  10 years of coaching experience! I have worked with young beginners in the middle school level, high school athletes who have gone on to compete at national Division I championships, and adults runners of all abilities.   For more information about customized training plans or private coaching opportunities click here  for pricing and package check it out here

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