101 Greatest Running Tips- Part 2

Here is part two of a five part series of 101 Training Tips By Mark Will-Weber

21. Dare to be different (but not dumb) “In training, don’t be afraid to be an oddball, eccentric, or extremist. Only by daring to go against tradition can new ways of training be learned. The trick is recognizing quickly when a new approach is counterproductive.” –Benji Durden, 1980 U.S. Olympic marathoner

22. Reach for fast, low-fat fuel “Energy bars are good portable food for runners. Look for bars with 4 grams of fat or fewer per 230 calories. Fat slows down digestion.” –Liz Applegate, Ph.D., sports nutritionist

23. Go for the goal “I believe in using races as motivators. It’s hard to keep on an exercise program if you don’t have a significant goal in sight.” –Bob Greene, personal trainer of Oprah Winfrey

24. Think big…but carry a small eraser “Brainstorm your training goals first, then write them down. Do this in pencil, so you can change some specifics when reality sets in.” –Jeff Galloway, Olympic runner/author/coach

25. Show some horse sense “During long, slow distance training, you should think of yourself as a thoroughbred disguised as a plow horse. No need to give yourself away by running fast.” –Marty Liquori, running commentator and former world-class miler

26. Build with care “If you put down a good solid foundation, you can then build one room after another and pretty soon you have a house. After your base mileage, add hills, pace work, speedwork, and finally race strategy.” –Rod Dixon, New Zealand Olympian and 1983 New York City Marathon champ

27. Look at the big picture “Whether one shall run on his heels or his toes is hardly worth discussing. The main thing in distance running is endurance–and how to get it.” –Clarence DeMar, seven-time Boston Marathon champion and U.S. Olympic marathoner

28. Toss out the clutter “Throw away your 10-function chronometer, heart-rate monitor with the computer printout, training log, high-tech underwear, pace charts, and laboratory-rat-tested-air-injected-gel-lined-mo-tion-control-top-of-the-line footwear. Run with your own imagination.” –Lorraine Moller, 1992 Olympic marathon bronze medallist

29. Listen to your body (yes, again!) “Your body is always trying to tell you where you are. Beware when you become tired and listless, when you lose interest in workouts and approach them as a chore rather than a pleasure.” –Dr. George Sheehan

30. Go steady “Day to day consistency is more important than big mileage. Then you’re never shot the next day.” –John Campbell, former masters running star from New Zealand

31. Find the right proportion “If you run 30 miles a week, then about 7 of those–or approximately one-quarter–should be quality miles. Quality miles will boost your aerobic capacity.” –Owen Anderson, Ph.D., running writer

32. Stay above bored “A 40-minute run punctuated with a half-dozen 30-second pace pickups (not all-out sprints) can really jazz up an otherwise boring training run.” –Amby Burfoot, Runner’s World editor and 1968 Boston Marathon champ

33. Be a “cross-eater” “Like cross-training, ‘cross-eating’ adds needed variety to your diet–and life. Expand your nutritional repertoire by trying one new food each week.” –Liz Applegate, Ph.D.

34. Ease it back “After a run, don’t rush back into life. Take a few minutes to walk, stretch, relax, meditate.” –Runner’s World editor

35. Don’t force the tissue “Overly aggressive stretching can actually increase your injury risk.” –Tim Noakes, M.D., author of Lore of Running

36. Think globally, act locally “We wrote our workout schedules in 3-week blocks. My coach and I knew what my immediate goal was–what I was trying to accomplish in the next 3 weeks. But in the back of my mind was the ultimate goal: what I wanted to do months away.” –Bob Kennedy, U.S. record holder for 5000 meters

37. Go with mind over grind “Any idiot can train himself into the ground; the trick is doing the training that makes you gradually stronger.” –Keith Brantly, U.S. Olympic marathoner

38. Have fun on your easy runs “I make sure I have some really enjoyable training runs, remembering to ‘smell the roses’ along the way. That way I don’t become caught up in the training-is-everything syndrome.” –Sue Stricklin, top masters runner from the 1970s

39. Have fun on your hard runs “Do tough workouts that you enjoy. Mile repeats and quarters are more fun for me than fartlek. [“Fartlek” is Swedish for variable-paced, up-tempo running.] I feel better about my running when I do the workouts I enjoy and that I know I benefit from.” –Dan Cloeter, two-time Chicago Marathon winner

40. Stay open-minded “When you try a new type of training, think like a beginner. Just because you can run 20 miles every Sunday doesn’t mean you can survive 10 x 400 meters on the track at a fast pace.” –Jack Daniels, Ph.D., exercise physiologist, coach, and former world-class pentathlete

101 Greatest Running Tips-Part 1

101 Greatest Running Tips- By Mark Will-Weber

1. Accept the challenge “Everyone is an athlete. But some of us are training, and some of us are not.” –Dr. George Sheehan, runner/writer/philosopher

2. Shoot for this (at least) “Running 8 to 15 miles per week significantly increases your aerobic capacity, and positively effects many of the coronary risk factors.” –Dr. Kenneth Cooper, aerobics pioneer

3. Be a minuteman “The biggest mistake that new runners make is that they tend to think in mile increments–1 mile, 2 miles, 3 miles. Beginning runners need to think in minutes, not miles.” –Budd Coates, four-time U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier/coach

4. Wear good running shoes “Spend at least $60. A good pair of running shoes should last you 400 to 500 miles and is one of the most critical purchases you will make.” –John Hanc, author of The Essential Runner

5. Think big (and wide) Buy all shoes, street and running, slightly longer and wider than your bigger foot. Also, avoid pointed shoes. You’ll save yourself needless foot pain.” –Ted Corbitt, ultrarunner and 1952 Olympic marathoner

6. Take the “talk test” “The ‘talk test’ means running at a pace comfortable enough to converse with a training partner–but not so easy that you could hit the high notes in an Italian opera.” –Runner’s World editors

7. Listen to the rumbling “If you feel like eating, eat. Let your body tell you what it wants.” –Joan Samuelson, 1984 Olympic marathon champion

8. Relax to the max “When running, let your jaw hang loose, don’t bunch up your shoulders close to your ears, and occasionally shake out your hands and arms to stay relaxed.” –Dave Martin, Ph.D., exercise physiologist

9. Don’t crush the egg “Don’t clench your fists in a white-knuckle grip. Instead, run with a cupped hand, thumbs resting on the fingers, as if you were protecting an egg in each palm.” –Runner’s World editors

10. Make time for a quickie “If 15 minutes is all the time I have, I still run. Fifteen minutes of running is better than not running at all.” –Dr. Duncan Macdonald, former U.S. record holder at 5000 (set when he was in medical school)

11. Follow Road Rule Number One “Running against traffic allows the runner to be in command. Anyone who is alert and agile should be able to stay alive.” –Dr. George Sheehan

12. Try a “nooner” “Noontime running provides a triple benefit: daylight, a break from the workday, and a chance to avoid eating a heavy lunch.” –Joe Henderson, runner/writer

13. Warm up, then stretch “Try some light jogging or walking before you stretch, or stretch after you run. Stretching ‘cold’ muscles can cause more harm than good.” –Runner’s World editors

14. Stay “liquid” “Hydrate. Hydrate. Hydrate! In cold weather and warm. We use water to sweat, lubricate joints, tendons, and ligaments, and to carry blood efficiently to major organs. I work all day at hydrating.” –Dr. Alex Ratelle, former masters running great

15. …But be moderate “Is beer good for runners? Sure…if it’s the other guy drinking it.” –Jim Fixx, author of the running bestseller, The Complete Book of Running

16. Listen up! “You must listen to your body. Run through annoyance, but not through pain.” –Dr. George Sheehan

17. Create your own running creed “My whole teaching in one sentence is: “Run slowly, run daily, drink moderately, and don’t eat like a pig.” –Dr. Ernst van Aaken, renowned German coach

18. Come ready to play “Fitness has to be fun. If it isn’t, there will be no fitness. Play is the process. Fitness is merely the product.” –Dr. George Sheehan

19. Take what you can get “So-called ‘junk miles’–those slow miles done on easy days or during warmups–do count. They burn calories as effectively as fast miles; it just takes longer. Regardless of pace, each mile you run burns about 100 calories.” –Hal Higdon, runner/writer/coach

20. Learn from your mistakes “You find out by trial and error what the optimum level of training is. If I found I was training too hard, I would drop back for a day or so. I didn’t run for 5 days before the sub-4.” –Sir Roger Bannister, first man to break 4 minutes for the mile in 1954

My First Marathon Experience- Bitter Cold

My first marathon experience was on January 16, 1994. My husband and I where running the Great Valley Marathon in Chambersburg Pa. At the age of 24 I only had one half marathon under my belt and that was not a good experience, making me a little nervous.  Race day we woke up to a temperature of -2 degrees with a wind chill factor of -20 degrees. Crazy one might think for even thinking of running a marathon. We drove out the night before so figure we might as well run since we are here.

The race director met with all the runners at the starting line for an important pre-race meeting. He told us to be careful while running the race. If you have any trouble out on the course , or want to stop, look for a car with there flashers on and they will drive you back to the warm building. He also said If you’d prefer not to start the race to see him and he would gladly refund all of your registration money. No one took him up on the refund offer. I have never been to a race that they would give you your money back but then it was freezing.

The race was a quick start literally line up and GO! I made it through 20 miles in 2:35 (pace to run 3:25). Shortly after 20 miles I started to hit the wall and started walking. The race volunteers where quick to tell us to run or get in the car for fear of runners getting hypothermia. At mile 22 I got into a car depressed that I was not going to finish  for the first time in my running career. Something positive came out of me DNF (didn’t finish) as the car pulled into the finish area I heard on the walkie-talkie the winner was approaching and it was my husband. I got to see the last 1/4 miles of his marathon win.

As I watched the runners finished I saw several men finish with beards that had icicles forming down. One guy had about a dozen icicles on his beard and each where several inches long. I wish I had my camera to take pictures because if you told others they would laugh.

The race had 105 runners register and only 70 show up to start the race. There where 64 finishers.  This is a good reason to pick a marathon not in the winter. Well unless it is in a place that would be a little warmer.  I was glad I had my gore-tex jacket on.  I had only bought it the month before and almost didn’t get one.

How to Pick the Right Marathon for You

By Patrick McCrann- Marathon Nation for Active.com

Here are a few things to think about when you pick your marathon race in 2011.

The challenge of running and racing a marathon is a singular pursuit. Before you even start, you know that you’ll have highs and lows, obstacles to overcome, and inevitable suffering–followed by euphoria–on race day. With all of this ahead of you, it makes sense to pick the right marathon. No 26.2 miles is the same, and not all races are created equal. Some are big, others are small. Some are epic tests, others are (literally) a “walk” in the park. Finding the right race that syncs with your goals, abilities, and geographical location can go a long way towards ensuring you are able to run to your potential.

The Four Factors

Before we even get to your particular goals, it helps to take a macro level review of where you stand. Here are the four key areas we suggest you consider when picking your next race:

#1 — Timing: The ideal marathon will give you at least three months of good outdoor running prior to race day. It will fall on a quiet time of year for you, either personally or professionally. There will be options for half marathons and other local running events that will keep you motivated and on track. You will have had at least 4 if not 8 weeks of downtime from your previous big race, so residual fatigue isn’t an issue.

#2 — Terrain: You might love the punishment of steep hills and oxygen-starved air; perhaps your crave epic scenery or the taste of travel to another part of the world. Or maybe you just want to drag race the whole way. Whatever you chose, make sure the race you pick has the terrain that matches your goals for the event. Watching total marathon newbies suffer on challenging courses because they didn’t know what they were in for isn’t fun…and it can be avoided if you do your homework.

#3 — Conditions: Make sure to research the weather on / around the race date of choice. Do a web search for race reports and forum posts about the event to learn what others have said. A race in Florida in January sounds great, for example, until you realize it’s been in the 30s at the start for the past few years. Knowing that the sun beats down on you later in the day, or that the temperature plummets on the other side of the mountain pass will make you a much more informed racer…and lead you to a better overall experience.

#4 — Logistics: Traveling to your next race sounds cool and exciting until you realize it means passports, international flights, a new language, and random dietary changes pre-race. Don’t get me wrong, I am all about adventure. I just want folks to consider just how much bandwidth they have before they pull the trigger on a race that could just be challenging enough so as to suck all the fun out of it.

Picking A Race By Goal Orientation

Now that we have covered the basics, we can afford to look more closely at your overall motivation for the race. Nuturing this passion is critical if you want to train and race to your potential. Despite the higher price tag, you still have a lot to do on your own. Knowing that your race “fits” you will go a long way to making the training both more bearable and effective.

Goal: First Timer
If you are out to pick your first marathon, ever, then I suggest you pick a relatively flat marathon course that will give you plenty of nice warm weather to train in. Warm weather training means more folks on the roads when you are, as well as a higher potential for group training options. It also means less gear to manage and more time to focus on your fitness and overall well being. The course doesn’t have to be 100 percent flat, but it should be straightforward. A nice loop course will mean more spectators to keep you going over those last few critical miles.

Goal: Boston Qualification
If your sole focus is on earning your right to try and sign up for the Boston Marathon, your selection process starts with terrain. You’ll want a flat and simple course, ideally with two loops. This will allow you so manage your time and effort appropriately and allow you to identify trouble areas before lap two hits.

As a veteran, weather and conditions aren’t as important to your decision, as odds are you’ll have the gear and the mental fortitude to suck it up should the running weather gods not be smiling on you. You’ll also want to check on the finish times for your age group and do some general research to make sure the course you are considering is legitimately a good option for qualifying.

Goal: Inspiration / Travel
If you are out to stay on track with your running but need a fun year, or a massive change of scenery, an international marathon might be just right for you. It will keep you running, but within reason as this isn’t about racing–it’s about doing. The travel to the race and few days leading up to it will have some stress, but the post-race scenery, cuisine, and culture will more than make up for it. Be sure to research by networking with other runners who have attempted the event…nothing beats the inside scoop!

Goal: Redemption
Maybe you had a bad race last year, or just not the best training buid up. Regardless of the reason, you are back to give it another go. This is both good and bad, as you know the course and what _not_ to do. But it also means you are bringing a lot of negative energy to the table; it can push you a long way but might not get you the full 26.2 miles.

And let’s face it, sometimes even the same course can seem different from year to year! To be 100 percent ready for your revenge tour, do a full 360-degree analysis to determine where things went wrong last time. Guaranteed your challenges will be very different this year, but even to have the basics covered will put you a few steps ahead.

Conclusion

There is no such thing as the perfect marathon, but with the right event, a clear set of goals, and the proper marathon training schedule, you’ll be well on your way to creating the perfect race experience for you. Good luck!

By Patrick McCrann- Marathon Nation for Active.com

26.2 Reasons To Run A Marathon

I remember  watching Joan Benoit- Samuelson run the 1984 Woman’s Olympic Marathon, after running my first season of  Jr. High school track.  I ran the mile and thought no way could I ever run that far.  After running for 17 years and having others asking why run a marathon I came up with a few reasons.  Have you ever thought about running a marathon?  If so here are 26.2 reasons to go for the challenge.

1.  Weight Loss – With all the running/training calories you will burn running, you are bound to lose weight.  That is if you also eat healthy and not all junk stuff.  If you are already at ideal weight training will help you maintain you weight especially during the Thanksgiving Christmas Holidays when you tend to eat lots of homemade goodies.

2.  Mental Freedom – Running can be your time to zone out.  When you are out running, there are no distractions, or demands being put on you.  If you have children this can be a good time for yourself.

3.  Physical Health –  You will improve your cardiovascular health which in turn will give you a longer and healthier life.

4.  Tones Legs – Running is a great way to tone your legs.

5.  Finishing Medal – you will a medal as long as you finish and only 1% of Americans have one to proudly display in your house.  Once I ran a marathon and started “hitting the wall” and thought about the medal I would get if I finished- it was a cool looking one!

6.  The T-shirt – this will be a shirt you can wear that tells the world you ran a marathon. Friends have told me when they started “hitting the wall” they remember the shirt and they didn’t want to wear it if they didn’t finish.

7.  The Photo – Most marathons have a professional photographer stationed on the course that takes pictures of all the runners.  Later you can purchase photos of yourself running to show everyone.

8.  Helping others – often marathons have a team in training program.  These programs help raise money for lots of  different organizations.  The biggest one is team in training for leukemia they help raise money to fight leukemia.  Knowing all the miles are helping someone else will help motivate you.

9.  You have something to look forward to – when you register for a marathon you have something exciting to look forward to.  As the day gets closer you will be anxious and excited. This is especially true if the marathon located some where you have never visited.

10.  Emotional release – Feeling Angry? Frustrated? Stressed? Go for a run and the problems will seem to melt away.  Long runs are great to help release stress.

11.  It’s a good conversation topic – When someone asks Monday at work what you did this weekend you can say “I ran 18 miles” This will be a lot more interesting than most people who relax and watch TV the entire weekend.

12.  Runners High – After running endorphins are released into your system giving you a “high” feeling.  You feel like you are on top of the world and nothing that comes your way will bother you.

13.  Your neighbor/ friends are not doing it – Be different from the ones you hang around with.  Less than 1% of Americans ever finish a marathon.  So if you do you will become one of  the few.

14.  You will love your body – If you have a poor body image and find everything to complain about, training for a marathon will give you a new respect for what the human body can do.

15.  Carbs are good – When you run long distance carbs  give you the  energy you need to keep running for hours at a time without stopping.  So eating then are not bad.

16.  Dieting – if you are training for a marathon you can get away with the one piece of cake for snack

17.  Boost your confidence and self-esteem – Running a marathon is an accomplishment and you will feel good about what you achieved.  It will give you confidence to tackle any other challenges that come your way.

18.  You can race against “the stars” – every year famous people run in the big marathons, you can see their race results and race against them.  For example Oprah Winfrey ran the Marine Corps Marathon in 4:29. Ready for the challenge!

19.  You are highly motivated and committed person – training and finishing a marathon takes both.

20.  Need structure? – running a marathon takes exactly that.  You have to do the training if you want to finish.

21.  Enjoy the outdoors – you will be spending lots of time outdoors.  You will get to know your surrounding better than the neighbors.  If the marathon you decide to run is in another state you will get to see that area as well.  You may want to take pictures during the marathon because you will see lots of things.

22.  To say you did  it – You can say you ran a marathon, this could mean something different for everyone.  Some runners just want to finish and others want to qualify for Boston.

23.  Making more time for yourself – Even if you train with others you are still making time for yourself.  Getting away form the grind of everyday life/work.

24.  Time with friends – if you are training with partners you will look forward to this adult time with other runners.

25.  Crossing the finish line – You will feel like you just won a gold medal.  You will have a range of emotions all at once pride, relief, and excitement.  You will be tired but to excited to actually feel it.

26.  Doing it again – I have heard runners say it is similar to having children.  As soon as you finish you can’t imagine going through all that again.  But later you get thinking about  running one again and before you know it you have finished another marathon.

0.2  – When you pass the 26 mile marker you realize that you are only .2 from the finish and you suddenly will get this burst of adrenaline.  You may have hit the wall or had times during the race that you doubted yourself but you mad it.  Wait a few weeks and you will think about doing this all again.  It gets addictive and you will want to run faster and see new places.

Top 10 Funniest Marathon Signs

If you have ever run a marathon you will understand how  funny signs the last couple of miles will help when it really starts to hurt.    They may  help distract you for a minute and hopefully give you a good laugh when you are feeling like giving up.     The last couple of miles you really don’t want to see the ones that say  “You’re looking great!” (cause at that point you don’t) and “Almost there!” (because you have  been checking my watch every 20 seconds hoping the GPS has moved to the next mile).  At the end of a marathon sometime even the stupid signs seem funny.

1.  “Humpty Dumpty had wall issues too”

2.  “Run faster, I just farted!”

3.  “You can do it Lisa Don’t Die”

4.  “Your feet are hurting because you’re kicking so much asphalt”

5.  “We thought this was a 5K”

6. “This marathon would be fun if not for all the running”

7. “Half Marathon 35,000 runners without being chased”

8. How you feel


9.  Yea- right! They need a lot of these signs at the Boston Start



10. At the end who has the bragging rights!


The Inspiring story of Sarah Reinertsen

When Sarah Reinertsen was a kid, she was told she’d never be able to run.In 2004  Reinertsen, at the time was 29, became the first female with a prosthetic leg to enter the Hawaii Ironman-which involves a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike, and a 26.2-mile run.

Sarah was the guest speaker of the  Runners World half marathon in Allentown, Pa.  My husband was coaching a group of runners called “Strides for Hope” from the area for the half marathon.  My daughters and I went to the race to cheer for the runners.  My daughters where 7 and 3 years old and were amazed by Sarah story she told at the pre-race dinner.  They could not believe someone was going to run with a “fake leg”.  We sat on the curb about half mile from the finish looking for her.  The girls sat intently looking for her  for about 30 minutes.  She was a little slower than expected for the race but as soon as my daughters saw her they started screaming her name.  My daughters and I were at the same hotel Sarah spoke at three years later, and they both remembered her story and the race.  I think having then watch her run made then realize how lucky they are.  They both run themselves now and have made comments about how hard it really is to run with a prosthetic leg.

Sarah Story- Sarah had her  left leg was amputated above the knee when she was 7  because of a tissue deficiency. She started running when she was 11, and in 1997 she completed her first marathon. After running six more-with a PR of 5:27:04-she started competing in triathlons. In 2003, she won the female leg-amputee division of the International Triathlon Union World Championships in New Zealand. “Athletics have given me the opportunity to prove that I’m just like everyone else,” she says. Reinertsen doesn’t wear a prosthetic to swim, so she has to hop out of the water and strap on her nine-pound running prosthetic to get to the transition area. There she switches to a prosthetic that has a bike cleat bolted to it. She has to change back to the running one for the marathon. Reinertsen, who lives in Solana Beach, California, works as a program manager at Challenged Athletes Foundation. “I want to help the disabled community break down barriers,” she says. “I love my life. I wouldn’t want to be any other way.”

Sarah story just goes to prove that running is a sport that anyone can do.