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you wanted to know, questions 16-20

Posted Sep 15 2010 3:27am
When I had my 1,000 mile giveaway, a requirement for entry was to ask me a question. Any question. And I promised to answer them in a series of posts. Here are questions 16-20 ...

Monica asked, "What is your favorite P90X workout? What is your least favorite?"

If you didn't know, I completed P90X earlier this summer and LOVED it. You can check out my results HERE . (Wow. I don't look like that right now. I should probably start the program again ...)

With that said, there were parts that I loved (and hated) more than others. My two favorite workouts were Chest and Back and YogaX (which I thought was the most difficult of the set). These two workouts were killer and I still felt challenged by them at the end of the program.

On the other hand, I CANNOT STAND KenpoX. Such a horrible workout. Maybe I'm just not coordinated enough for it, but I constantly felt like I was fumbling around and barely worked up a sweat. I hated it so much that I only did it twice and then started swapping it out for CardioX and Core Synergistics.

justme asked, "What, if anything, have you done to prevent the injuries that can occur when people consistently run?"

The number one thing I do is LISTEN TO MY BODY. I try to pay attention to the signs of impending injury and halt it in its tracks. If I need a rest day, I take a rest day. If I need to slow down, I slow down. The injuries I have had in the past could have been less severe had I not tried to "push through." I know better now.

Rae asked, "What is a good pace I should run when doing long runs? I saw on a training plan that I should do over 10 minute miles. Should I be doing that? I feel if I run that "slow" I won't be able to run fast in races. What is the pace you run when not racing?"

OK. I always get this question and no one ever likes the answer.

You (and everyone else) should be running the MAJORITY (not all) of your miles at about 80% of your max speed for the distance. For most people, this equates to about 1-2 minutes slower than race pace.

For example, if you run a 10K at an 8 min/mile pace, your 6 mile training runs should be at about a 10 min/mile pace. And if you run a 10K at a 6 min/mile pace, your 6 mile training runs should be at about a 7:30 min/mile pace. Speed is relative. But the calculation is the same regardless of what your race pace may be.

This is not to say that you need to run slower ALL THE TIME. Speedwork has it's time and place and on average should make up about 10% of your weekly mileage (once you have a well-established weekly mileage base.)

Personally, I run 90% of my miles somewhere between a 9:45 and 10:45 per mile, depending on the length of the run. The other 10% is run at a 9:30 (marathon pace) or faster, depending on the workout.

Michelle asked, "As a new runner I'm trying to figure out how to incorporate tempo, speedwork and hill repeats into my training - which would you advise to start with and how often?"

For a beginning runner, I feel building your weekly mileage base is more important than speedwork. Building your base will increase your endurance, which in turn, will increase your speed.

But, once you have a solid base, speedwork can safely be added in once a week (twice for the more seasoned runner). I think that tempo runs are the easiest form of speedwork for most people and is what I recommend to my clients who are adding in speedwork for the first time.

Tempo runs, intervals (track workouts) and hill repeats are all very effective training tools. But finding the right combination really depends on the individual, their goals and the course profile of their race.

Shannon asked, "If you ran before you became a mom, did you ever have a freak out moment where you thought "omg, my life as a runner is over!?" and if so, how did you overcome that?"

Ha! I would probably say that.

But, no, that never happened. I didn't actually start running until after my second daughter was born, so this whole "mommy/runner" thing is all I have ever known. That's not to say that I haven't had those freak out moments where I thought I wouldn't be able to get it all in. If I am having one of those days, I try to BREATHE. And I try to remember that other moms and runners are out there getting it done, and so can I. And then, I schedule, schedule, schedule, until I work it all out.
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