Three Years Older, Three Minutes Faster

image1 (1)It’s always great to see runners improving their PRs after entering the masters division. Lawrence Bookham of Aldershot, England, set a new PR at the Maratona S.Antonio in Padua, Italy. His official time was 3:12:37 – 3 minutes faster than his previous personal best set three years ago as a 38-year-old. This was also a BQ!

Afterwards, Lawrence commented,

“I was a bit skeptical about being able to race faster with so much easy running in the plan (even Threshold runs are quite easy compared to the type of training I was doing before I started on a Run SMART plan) but nevertheless it has done the trick, so a big Thank you!”

Too many runners think “harder” is always the answer to improving. Masters runners, especially, need to be more focused on recovery and training at the right intensities.

Science on the Run: “Better Short Than Never!”

By Nikki Reiter

Do you plan your workout intensity? Does this ever deter you from your workout effort, or maybe deter you from starting the workout altogether?

Research has been published comparing rating of perceived exertion (RPE) responses before, during and after continuous and ‘high-intensity interval training’ (HIIT) exercise trials.

Apparently, RPE has been shown to change in relation to the same session, depending on ‘when’ it is asked.

Avoiding The Wall

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A common theme in feedback we’ve gotten from our spring marathoners:  ‘I avoided the wall.’ Anka Sawiec of Gaj in Poland shares her result:

Last Sunday I ran the Cracovia Marathon – first marathon in my life 🙂 It took me 3h45min!!!!

Thanks again for a good training plan. Starting the 30th km I was waiting for this mythical wall to come 🙂 But nothing happened! I had enough power to keep my pace for the entire distance and even to accelerate on the last kilometer!

 Congratulations, Anka!

Part I: How To Become A Faster Runner Through Cross Training

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By Malindi Elmore

Why do so many runners loath cross training? I know that I was firmly in the I-hate-cross-training camp for too many years. I think it is a combination of factors that result in this hatred for something that is beneficial to your running. Over the course of my 20-year career as a runner I have had more experience cross training than I care to count – 6 major injuries, pregnancy and a transition to being a multi-sport athlete has required that I sweat out hours aqua-jogging, biking, swimming, etc.

Making The Final Turn At Boston

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Juan Carlos Soto making the final turn at the Boston Marathon this past weekend in route to a new PR despite the cold, rain and wind. His official time was 2:40:40, roughly 7 minutes faster than his PR set last year in Chicago. Hats off to a really impressive performance!

“Thank you for a great training program! I managed to run right on the prediction of my VDOT O2 calendar.” – Juan Carlos

This Was My 5th Marathon And I Have Never Felt So In Control

FullSizeRender (1)The weather report at this year’s Boston Marathon was crappy:  cold, rain and wind. Apparently, no one told Rowan Jones because he went out and set a new PR by 2 minutes and 17 seconds. Not only did he PR in tough conditions he negative split Boston! His official time was 2:54:44.

This was Rowan’s third PR and second sub-3 performance while following one of our custom plans from Dr. Jack Daniels. After the race he said…

This was my 5th marathon and I have never felt so in control. No “wall”. Cruised to the beginning of the Newton Hills and then ran by perceived effort all the way to the top of Heartbreak Hill. Dropped the hammer from there and had enough left to kick to a 6:01/mi for mile 26, 5:39/mi for the final 0.2.

Science on the Run: The Maximal Footwear Debate

UntitledLinking current research to running

By Nikki Reiter

I couldn’t figure out how to respond in only 140 characters to a Run SMART reader’s tweet, ‘Say no to Hokas?’ in response to my last post about the ‘foot core system’. While I’m not an expert on Hoka shoes, I do have some reservations about it’s thick midsole. Thanks to @SaltyRuns for the tweet!

How Functional Are Your Core Strength Exercises?

By Caroline Varriale

Most runners know that having a strong core is essential to running efficiency. After all, what is connecting our legs and arms as we fly from one side to the other? Our trunk and core are perhaps the most important part of our body to strengthen and train, and running is an extremely challenging activity for the core to stabilize.

60 Years!

Credit:  Sarah Tupper Daniels

Credit: Sarah Tupper Daniels

Jack turns 82 this month. This also marks 60 years for him in the sport of running. His impact on the sport is immeasurable and he’s still running, coaching and teaching full-time.

He reflects on the last 60 years in Running Times:

In 1955 in the Army, in Korea, I entered and placed well in a military triathlon with pistol shooting, swimming and running, so that was my first-ever run, and I was pretty slow. I won the shoot and swim and got last in the run.

I transferred to San Antonio to train for modern pentathlon, which included horseback riding, fencing, pistol shooting, swimming and running. During those six years, I managed two Olympic medals and one world championship medal.

I always wanted to learn to run better, so I studied a year at a sport school in Stockholm and did my Ph.D. dissertation on the sport of running. At the University of Wisconsin, and while in Sweden, I had a couple of the world’s best exercise physiologists to learn about training from— Per-Olof Astrand and Bruno Balke.

Full article.

Science on the Run: What Are We Without Our Feet?

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Linking current research to running

By Nikki Reiter

Being injured sucks. I recently hit a setback to my post-maternity training due to some ‘stop-me-dead-in-my-tracks’ arch pain. From this stems a reminder for ‘prehab, prehab, prehab!’ This personal incident comes along with an aptly timed publication about a new paradigm concerning foot health – the ‘foot core system.’

While we traditionally associate our ‘core’ with our pelvic region (and all the muscles that insert into it), this new publication highlights that the foot also has its own core, comprising of ‘intrinsic muscles’ (meaning the muscles fully contained within the foot) that are largely ignored when it comes to the typical muscles we associate with running.