I don't know if many have noticed, but now that the oppressive summer heat has given way to cooler and milder weather, it can only mean one thing - fall marathon season is fast approaching! As of this writing, there are only six training weeks left before "Marathon Weekend" on 10/9-10/10 commences. In honor of this occasion (and frankly because I have too much material to cover in not so much time and space), I present to you running highlights from my past week in six points:
- Running/Training Update - This was a peak week of training for me. After rocking out a tough tempo run Tuesday, track work on Thursday and a 20 mile long run today (as a pacer), I'm on my way to a 70+ mile training week, which is a new mileage PR for me. Yet despite all that, I'm still relatively healthy with minimal pain, soreness or tightness to report. I have really taken to heart the old adage of running slow runs slow so you can run the faster runs fast and it has really worked well for me. I have two hard weeks of hard training left and a 24 hour relay race in mid-September before the taper. I can hardly wait.
- Running Relays - Speaking of relays, did you know that I'm running the Reach the Beach Relay next month? I'll be running with Team Saucony as part of a 12-person team that will cover a distance of 200 miles in 24 hours. Judging from the insane fun I had at Ragnar NY back in July, I am expecting much the same in this one. And since I've had one relay race under my belt, I'll be more experienced and be more prepared to run my best in this race. I'm so excited to run with this crew. Woohoo!
- Running Podcast - A week ago, my friends Jason and Ray at "Geeks in Running Shoes" invited me on their podcast to talk running, hydration, and injuries. Apparently, it has gotten rave reviews from many so far so I wanted to make sure my bloggy friends get a chance to listen too. You can download the show from ITunes or directly from the site here. I promise lots of laughter, some nonsense and a bit of medical knowledge too! If you listen, be sure to leave some feedback for us. Thanks!
- Running Strides - As a followup to my last post where I spoke about using a faster and shorter stride to gain speed and improve running form, my friend Pete L forwarded me this article from Runner's World detailing a research study where it was confirmed that this was true. The study showed that increasing turnover and taking shorter strides does indeed lead to runners landing closer to their center of mass and reducing energy absorption on joints. As the researchers concluded from their study, "Our findings demonstrate that subtle changes in step rate can reduce the energy absorption required of the lower extremity joints, which may prove beneficial in the prevention and treatment of running injuries." (Thanks Peter!) Those who are interested in transitioning to minimalist/barefoot running and those who are looking to improve their performance should pay close attention.
- Running Shoes - Meanwhile, Pete L, the running shoe guru himself also wrote up a splendid review of the Saucony Kinvara and how the shoe resembles a gateway drug for the minimalist running. I have been running races and long runs in my Kinvaras and have felt great in them. My take on them is that although they are not strictly minimalist per se, they are by far the shoes with the lowest heel drop I've ever worn. They are lightweight (7.7 oz) and feel extremely comfortable on my feet. I am already on my second pair and will most likely run my fall marathons in them.
- Running Marathons - Speaking of marathons, I posed this question to the twitternation earlier this week - If you were to receive a full ride to run just one single marathon, which would you choose? Out of 20+ people, the top three vote-getters were London, Great Wall, and Antartica. Interesting. I'm now opening the survey up to the masses - What say you blogger people?
Have a great weekend everyone! I hope the final days of summer are kind to you and you are all rocking those workouts!