Thursday, August 11, 2011

Why Run...

As a distance runner with a history of various overuse injuries and over training complications, people often ask, "why do you run?"

I used say, "I love it. I love the feeling, the high, the intense speed training days, and the long runs filled with quiet time to let my mind wonder." The second most common answer is, "I run to lose weight and it's good for you."

I found that after years of distance running and maintaining a weekly training schedule of up to 90 mi/wk. I no longer had an answer for I why run. I was injured on a regular basis and never felt "good" going in to races. Running became a chore and any flexibility and I once had from  gymnastics and my agility from soccer had completely vanished. Despite what most people think, most runners are not universal fit. Don't get me wrong, I was dong enough cardiovascular exercise for everyone on my block, but I was also eating enough for everyone my block!

I've met so many fellow distance runners, experienced or not who struggle with the same problems; primarily overuse injuries, plateaued running times, and difficulties in maintaining a healthy diet while performing high weekly mileage.

But, what if we could have it all? Run farther faster, be leaner, stronger, and more flexible while taking more rest days....

Some of the most successful distance runners are learning training methods that create all around athletes. My athletes and I now train in multiple sports to include strength, agility and flexibility. We focus on whole body movements and lots of high intensity intervals in both running and cycling. As testimony to this training method I can tell you from first hand experience, I run no more than 16 mi/wk and never more than 6 mi/day. Yet I'm continuing to improve my times in distances over 10 miles and as short as 400m. Plus, I have lost nearly 10lbs and I'm leanest I have ever been since switching to this training methodology.

Answer the question for yourself, "WHY DO YOU RUN?" Consider your training it really working for you?

Please post comments, questions and feedback. Thanks,

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