Take Back Your Run

By Blake Boldon

As Christmas and New Year’s quickly approach, we runners find ourselves in the middle of the most challenging time of year to train.  The stress associated with normal work obligations, family commitments and social events is amplified by seasonal deadlines, holiday celebrations and travel.  Adding insult to injury, days are nauseatingly short and the characteristically brutal weather conditions can send even the insanely brave among us scampering for the nearest treadmill.

Winter Running Tips

Winter Running Tips

By Rod Koborsi

As a Houston native, I never ran indoors, never ran in pants, and wouldn’t dare be seen in tights. Then again, I had never seen more than three inches of snow. As I ventured into the world  and experienced winter training in Washington, DC and Colorado Springs, I realized that my stubborn ways had to change or I would risk injury or illness that could have been easily prevented.

Running Advice Articles From Run SMART Coaches

For the past eight weeks Run SMART coaches have been contributing original content to our blog on all sorts of running-related topics. Our goal is to share a new article from one of our esteemed coaches on a different running topic each week. This is a great opportunity to learn more about the sport from the insightful viewpoints of our elite coaching staff.

So far we’ve posted Learning How To Concentrate and the Three Most Important Tips For Beginners by Mike Smith. Dr. Jack Daniels, via Flotrack and Saucony, shared his thoughts on cross training for runners. Blake Boldon wrote about what he believes to be the Three Fundamental Principles of Running. Vince Sherry covered When to Get New Running Shoes. Brian Rosetti brought us Learning How To Recover Properly.

Learning How To Concentrate Can Improve Your Running

“Staying on Task”

By Mike Smith

Fall 1998, I am a freshman, about two months into Division I collegiate running.  It’s a whole new world and I’m getting a hard introduction. My team is one of the best in the country and I am trying my hardest to hang on in yet another brutal practice. A dark fall day, the older runners pull away again, leaving me behind in another interval session. What am I doing here? I feel like I am trying so hard but I just keep getting dropped. Every workout.

When To Get New Running Shoes

Question:  Should I get new running shoes for the marathon, and if so – when?

Run SMART Coach Vince Sherry:  This question is a good one (as well as a common one) that marathoners often ask me about one week before the big day. It is most often part of the final pre-marathon panic. In the quest to make sure everything is perfect for race day, runners will look to their shoes at some point. Unfortunately, it’s often when the race is right around the corner, which leads me to my first tip; never purchase running shoes in a pressured state. A rushed decision is not usually a very good one. Try to plan ahead and get your marathon race-day shoes at least two weeks prior to the race. You should be lining up with around 20 to 40 miles on your trainers (less if your wearing racing flats).

If you’re fairly certain that your running shoes have more than 150 miles on them I would recommend getting a fresh pair. It’s not that your current shoes are shot at that point (in fact that’s about half the mileage a modest pair of trainers would give you), they’re just not 100%. The marathon will likely be the toughest event you run all season. You should give your feet as much cushioning as possible on race day. You will likely finish with less wear and tear and recover faster as a result. If you do end up purchasing a new pair a couple of weeks out make sure they are the same model as the shoes you’ve been running in for the current training period. This is not a time to try something new (unless the shoe you’ve been in has been giving you serious trouble).

Read Vince’s complete response at NYDailyNews.com

Dr. Jack Daniels On Cross Training

The latest Thirsty Thursday edition with Dr. Jack Daniels brought to you by Flotrack and Saucony is a dandy. Jack discusses the advantages and dangers of incorporating cross training into your running routine. He also makes a wonderful point about not adding in new stress over the last 3-4 weeks before your goal race.

Track and Field Videos on Flotrack

Learning How To Recover Properly

Learning How To Recover Properly

By Brian Rosetti

Based on my experience as an athlete and a coach, one of the most overlooked components of a runner’s training plan is ‘recovery.’ Naturally, athletes are more focused on the work they must put in to reach their goals, not the time or habits necessary to recover from this work. Running is unlike any other sport in that the body needs more time to recover and bounce back than usual. If you don’t recover properly then chances are you’re going to get sick, under-perform or get injured. My first priority when working with runners is to keep them healthy, even if that means under-training them. The longer you stay healthy the more consistent you are and only after lengthy periods of consistent training is when real results come. 

Three Fundamental Principles Of Running

Three Fundamental Principles Of Running

By Blake Boldon

This summer I was asked to speak at a couple high school camps and without a specific knowledge of everything covered at the camp, my challenge was developing a relevant subject.  I thought about what lessons are universally applicable to all track and field athletes and distance runners no matter their competitive level or age.  After reflecting on my years as a coach and as an athlete I found three fundamental principles.

Altitude Training By Dr. Jack Daniels, Part III

Part III of Jack’s Altitude Training Series focuses on, “What is the best altitude for living and training high?”

Any altitude at which you can perform quality training is useful, but moderate altitudes, in the range of 1600-2600 meters (5000-8500 feet), are felt to be ideal. Flagstaff’s 2134 meter (7000 feet) elevation is certainly in the middle of that range. At this altitude there are seldom any problems with altitude sickness and normal amounts and relative intensities of training are generally easy to maintain.

Next week we’ll post “How much improvement will take place with acclimatization?”

Is A Training Plan Essential?

Is A Training Plan Essential?

By Rod Koborsi

As runners, we ask numerous questions to help us feel better, train harder and run faster. These questions vary from whether minimalist footwear is all the hype to how far should I run be before a marathon. While these questions (and everything in between) may be good ones to ask, they sometimes forget one of the most important questions, “Is a training plan essential?”