Back to Work - Time to think about your Technique:)
"Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it." - Oprah Winfrey
Coaching Advice: We are back to building again: Volume is Up! That means the number of minutes you are running is progressing, and so is the quality of your running... Time for some Technique Work! Also you need to be honest about any niggly aches or pains you may have... (hope not - but if you do then scroll down for some thoughts on taking time off impact with cross training before you return to running...)
These last 4 weeks have been about gradually finding your own natural rhythm as you work through your easy talking pace efforts and brisk efforts. While workloads are increasing you are ready now to think more about your technique. Each week I will add a new element for you to focus on.
Turnover: This week think about “turnover” – a quicker cadence – remembering it’s that nice quick swing of the arms that will set your pace and rhythm. Try to be light on your feet with less time on the ground. Listen to your steps and see if you can be “quieter” with a softer landing. When we get tired, we tend to over-stride with a strain, which is why we need to quick that stride shorter and quicker and lighter. And remember… all these things take time to develop.
Brisk 3-Minute Intervals: We are now really building focus and concentration with these 3- minute intervals as you learn more about pacing and what you can handle…It’s not easy! Imagine yourself running solidly for a 5K race. Your perceived effort over a 5K (hypothetically a 5K will take you anywhere from 20 minutes to 30 minutes or so...) would be what you are trying to hold for these 3-minute brisk intervals. So for your 3 minute brisk intervals holding that pace should not be too fast for yourself, but it’s also not slow. You are definitely above a talking pace and you should feel like you need that recovery afterwards but you are not huffin’ and puffin’ like you’ve run a sprint. It’s a solid effort that you feel you have control over, and you could run longer if you “had” to. As always, you should finish the final 5th interval feeling like you could do another one if you “had” to. Good luck! 😊
Pay attention to any aches or discomforts in your body that do not seem to be going away. Imagine a scale of 1-10, with 1 being a level of very little discomfort, and 10 being a level of extreme discomfort. Be aware of that scale whenever you run, and rate yourself on that scale with whatever you may be experiencing. A "1 or 2" on that scale is probably ok and simply your body adjusting to these new physical demands. If you have an awareness or discomfort in your body that you consider a "2", but it increases to a "4 or 5", then you will need to pay attention. If that awareness continues to increase to a "5 or 6 or higher", then it may be time to re-adjust your program. Perhaps you've missed a few days, or you need a new pair of shoes for better support, or you need to run on a softer surface. It's also possible the program is simply too much for you right now and we need you to do some cross training for awhile to remove the impact of running and allow your body to heal: Spinning on a bike, swimming or deep water running in a pool are great ways to relieve your body from the impact, augment your training, and help your body stay fit while it heals so that you can restart your program. *You can choose the LearnToRun101 Program to return carefully to running again and stay healthy.
In my life as a serious athlete, I was a pioneer in the world of cross training as a way to stay fit for running and performance and I'm happy to share my experience.
Cross Training Q & A Article here:
I have had every injury in the book throughout my career as an Olympic Runner and seen every injury in my world as a coach of athletes of all ability levels. This is not a good thing – it’s just part of the process at the high performance level when one is striving to push oneself to the limits of what is possible. These days I personally stay healthy and enjoy running 2-3 days a week, while incorporating Cross Training on other days. I share my experiences with you as your Coach so that you will have your best possible experience as you work through the program that’s right for you.
Deep Water Running ie. Staying afloat in deep water utilizing a running action:
Have a look at this article I wrote for Runner's World magazine back in the day when I was a serious athlete to help you understand how cross training and especially Deep Water Running can be very effective for healing and improving your fitness and health. This article is still passed around now as a current resource for runners and coaches. It's perhaps more detail than you need now in your new world as a runner, but you'll understand what your options are and may even think to try deep water running for yourself as a way to "run" without impact.
(If you haven't already watched it...!)
Smiles and have a great week!
Back to Building and starting to think about your Technique - Have fun!
Typically the toughest session of the week. Volume is high and this session includes your brisk interval training.
Warm-up: Walk comfortably for 5 min. with dynamic stretches. Run 4 minutes. Walk 1 minute.
Work-out: 3 minute brisk run followed by a 2 min. walk/run recovery as you feel. Do this 5 times. (Reminder for the walk/run recovery - this is personal. You may choose to walk 1 min. and shuffle 1 min. or now it may be that you only need to walk until you feel ready to shuffle again in recovery mode. The purpose is to do what you need to feel recovered before you start your next 3 minute interval and what's important is the contrast in your brisk effort interval vs the recovery interval.)
Cool-down: Walk/Run 10 min. any combination as you feel. This may mean you shuffle jog all or only part of this 10 minutes. You can walk a minute/run a minute or even walk the entire 10 minutes. It's all about how you feel. Finish with static stretches.
Total Time: 45 min.
Easiest day of the week - Stay with it! No more and no less ok?
Warm-up: Walk comfortably for 5 min. Include dynamic stretches.
Work-out: Run 27-36 min. Alternate 8 minutes of running with 1 min. walking. *We are growing those running minutes!
Cool-down: Walk comfortably for 5 min. Finish with static stretches.
Total Time: 37-46 min.
*You'll notice the option for more volume. If you are completing this program for the first time please choose the lesser volume!
Moderate Day - Remember – you should always feel like you could do more. (But don't:)
Warm-up: Walk comfortably for 5 minutes. Include dynamic stretches.
Work-out: Run 36-42 minutes alternating 5 min. of easy talking-pace running with 1 min. of walking.
Cool-down: Walk comfortably for 5 minutes. Finish with static stretches.
Total Time: 46-52 min.