WHAT WOULD YOU DO? Video goes viral of fellow runners helping one of their own make it to the finish line of the Philadelphia LOVE Half Marathon on Sunday March 26.
The participants were all coming in under the 2-hour mark when the act of kindness occurred. Two men from Pennsylvania stopped to help a woman they saw struggling toward the finish line on wobbly legs, at the end of the race. A third man was also involved. Suddenly, one of them picked her up in his arms and ran, carrying her to a point just before the line so she could cross under her own power. Then they helped her to find aid.
Competitor.com reported on the story and has a link to another piece from Fox 29.
Seeing this I wondered what I would have done. There were others nearby in the race who did not become involved. Would I overthink the situation, weighing the 'pros' and 'cons', such that the opportunity to act would come and go before I responded? Admittedly, I do not have the strength to contemplate such a bold move as swooping up another human being at the end of a 2-hour race.
But if I was going to finish such that I placed high in my age group with a chance at a medal, would I have slowed down to offer my assistance or encouragement? Or even recognized the situation while intensely focused on finishing? Would I wonder if the person would be insulted or offended at my taking control? Is it best policy to let someone collapse before interfering?
For both rescuers and rescued in this instance the outcome was as good as it could have been. The runner likely wasn’t going to finish solely under her own power, and an under-2-hour time would not have been realized. Instead of experiencing a sense of failure, she felt the selfless love of other runners helping her meet a challenge. In delaying their own finish the men insured they would not be second-guessing themselves later for passing a runner in distress. Instead of gaining seconds on their race times, they become heroes and role models.
It seems that, like running to compete in a race at a specific pace, we must persevere at practicing acts of kindness regularly, so that we are capable of automatic mental and physical responses in times of need.
100 HALF MARATHON CLUB SURVEY + Registration Opens for WINNER
The Williams ROUTE 66 2017 Marathon/Half Marathon opens registration on March 31 for its races on November 19, 2017.
RunningUSA.org recently featured this half marathon in its newsletter, noting that it swept the 100 Half Marathon Club survey awards. Included were top votes for Overall Best Top Rated Individual Events, best half marathon in the US, best medal, race shirt, volunteers, and more.
RunningUSA.com says “each year club members are encouraged” to complete a survey “recognizing their favorite half by state, theme, price, value and other criteria.”
According to the 100 Half Marathons Club website, the organization was “established to recognize and celebrate athletes that have completed 100 lifetime half marathon (or more), and to encourage and help others reach this goal.”
Haven’t yet finished 100 races of this distance? No worries. The club welcomes all persons worldwide who have completed at least 10 half marathons. Better yet, the Club doesn’t mind if you ran or walked them, where you competed, or how long it took you to cross the finish line.
The ground rules of membership may explain part of the popularity of the Williams Route 66 race in Tulsa OK amongst its voting members. Checking out the very informative website shows that marathon (and potentially and half marathon?) participants have 7.5 hours to finish and have their time recorded. There’s a caution that if moving at a pace slower than 15 minutes/mile participants could be asked by safety officers to use the sidewalk, as roads which the course uses will re-open after 6.5 hours.
Also interesting are awards called “Clydesdale” and “Athena”. These “weight class awards will be based on age-graded times following USAT guidelines” says the very complete race brochure. If you’d like to learn more about this award class there’s an article in RunnersWorld.com, “Why Do Athena/Clydesdale Categories Exist” by Susan Paul.
This race weekend seems perfect for nearly everyone wishing to compete in a longer distance race. Not considering the entertainment, support, and atmosphere, etc, the races themselves welcome runners and walkers of varying capabilities and go to an extreme to reward top efforts. In addition, this race occurs at the last part of the running year, just before Thanksgiving. There’s plenty of time to train in cool-ish, non-snowy weather.
Possibly Tulsa OK earned the Number 3 spot in ACTIVE’s Most Popular Cities Per Capita for Extremely Active Millennials in 2016, because of hosting this weekend of racing. There was a Facebook and BLOG post on this topic January 31, 2017.
This award-winning event seems to be worth a closer look and strong consideration if you’re in the market for a well-organized half marathon later this year.
Are you looking for an annual opportunity to run a personal race? Here’s another suggestion from the Earned Runs EVENTS list posted in the RESOURCES page:
April 2-5, 2017 (or later for first 2107 home games)
MLB OPENING DAY MASH-UP: any distance
If you’re a runner who also loves major league baseball (hey 2016 World Champion Cubs’ fans), mark the start of the season with a personal race, run, or walk using Earned Runs Bibs. Create an annual ‘ceremony’ to solemnize your team’s run at a championship this year with your own GOOD LUCK send-off effort.
If your start time is prior to when the first pitch is thrown in a night game, you can head to the favorite local team hangout afterward. Or if it’s an afternoon game, set the distance and start time to coincide with everyone’s lunch breaks. Each person can run the distance that fits their schedule, but make a point to wear gear and meet up to watch the game or commemorate the season’s start after work.
REQUEST BIBS now to have them available for a spur of the moment decision to participate in a personal event.
ATTENTION RUNNERS! AND WALKERS? Make your insights, opinions and preferences count with the US running industry. Take the 2017 National Runner Survey.
The RunningUSA organization encourages your participation. “We're collecting responses now for our latest National Runner Survey, measuring the trends, preferences and insights from thousands of runners across the country.”
Earned Runs thinks walkers might also take the survey because there are questions that list "untimed" events and distances of 1 and 2 miles as well as 5k (3.1 miles) as potential favorites for survey takers. Organizers of running events could benefit from the input of walkers, especially if they are accompanying runners.
This survey is fairly long. It gathers a relatively small amount of information about you as a person (gender, age group, ethnicity, years running, weekly mileage, income and employment). Other items seek to determine your preferences in running, training and exercising, and competing. There is interest in learning how you become aware of and select events, your use of and sharing on social media, and reliance on electronic device apps.
Race organizers and directors will be eagerly awaiting this information so that future events can be designed to draw in more participants and increase the enjoyment that comes with attending. Some questions ask for opinions on the cost of events. If you’d rather pay less for less swag, pay more for a more exciting experiences, or have other thoughts on how you’d like to spend your running event-related money here’s a chance to have an impact on what’s offered.
If you wish to influence this group, don’t leave it to everyone else! Another reason to take the survey is to learn more about yourself as a runner; it’s an exercise in self-examination as much as a survey.
FOOT CARE: PEDICURES FOR RUNNERS
I forced myself to get a pedicure last week. I had planned to wait until beach and flip-flop season in June or July to clean up my feet. However, a spur of the moment opportunity to see a beloved friend at a conference with an outdoor hotel pool caused me to consider improving the condition of my toes. What if we went swimming and their horrible appearance was revealed?
All winter (gross alert: this could be disgusting) I must have been hitting the toes of both feet against the top of the shoe box, such that repeatedly I was peeling off discolored, dead nails. The result was ugly, ugly, ugly. I seriously doubted that more than skin remained in the grungy bed of my worst nail.
The results were amazing. Okay, relatively amazing if the initial condition is considered. There was no reconstruction required. I received such a lift seeing that the situation was better than I had thought, and was re-energized knowing that running had not totally ruined my nails. I felt I had been 'cured'.*
The New York Times WELL.com blog ran an article about runners getting pedicures. The featured runner, Jackie Cartier, could have been me. Her mindset and situation matched mine almost exactly. The reason to read on is that this article and post are not about having pretty feet. It’s about foot health for running.
Last year in April a blog post discussed foot care for runners based on an article by coach Hal Higdon that included a recommendation for pedicures. This had been a shock to me, as I had always thought it would be harmful to smooth and soften skin that would need to re-form calluses.
The pedicure issue is only one component of foot health. Other issues include shoe fit, socks, keeping skin soft, fighting fungus, and strengthening toes. Scan these articles. Perhaps you are well informed and don’t need the help. Before reading about the topic last year, I thought I was.
*Note: The clear polish I chose was rejected by the pedicurist; she selected a bright color!
WEEK 11 HALF MARATHON + ‘SAINTS DAYS’ TRAINING PLAN STARTS
You should be settling into a rhythm by now. One recovery walk + 1 hill repeats session + 2 shorter distance runs + long run, each week. The types of shorter distance runs have not been specified up to this point and will remain so. However, their non-specific nature also allows runners to individualize one or both sessions at this point in the plan as work becomes focused on the half marathon.
Remember, this plan is for beginners or those getting back into running races who did not have one available to them for this distance. Advanced runners who wished to increase their speed to a faster pace and finish with an improved time will have scanned this plan and likely realized it was not going to help with that. They will have used a plan provided by event organizers if formally registered for a race, or found one online that promised to prepare runners for their “best finish time ever.”
So, for beginners there are 3 options for running the shorter distance sessions. #1 is for runners who only wish to “finish” the 13.1K distance and are not concerned with time. #2 is for those who wish to finish strong but aren’t focused on gaining speed. #3 is for runners who wish to push their limits a bit more, and test themselves in the upcoming event.
Jenny Hadfield offers 4 tempo runs for runners who are new to them in an article for Runnersworld.com, “Four Tempo Workouts for Runners”. Included are warm-ups and cool-downs, which are a must! You are roughly running 2-4 miles, because the exact distance will vary by running pace. With increased running intensity in certain segments, the swap with a 3 or 4 mile run would be fine, and suitable for the Thursday 3 mile run, or a 4 mile run especially if you're not running hill repeats.
If you are new to racing, the “high-five” tempo workout listed first might help you deal with one aspect of competition, the speed-ups and slow-downs normally experienced in a race. If you’re not a leader at the head of the pack. For example, you occasionally might wish to speed up and pass a group that has slowed down in front of you, then dial it back a bit after the harder work. Or tackle a long, low hill that requires more effort ,after which you take a little breather by easing up.
When you are training by yourself or with friends you control the pace. In a competition you will not always be in control, and if you’re not ready for it mentally and physically it could throw you off your race plan.
Have fun experimenting with these shorter runs soon. There’s enough time now, before the race, to try the negative split, the tempo run, or both, and revert to the old comfortable routine if the change-up doesn’t work for you.
SUGGESTED USE FOR EARNED RUNS BIBS COMING SOON.
If you haven't been able to register for an organized race this spring there are still many opportunities to energize your running season. When you cannot seem to muster the effort to train for a specific race or distance there are other ways to motivate yourself and others in the same rut. Here's a suggestion form Earned Runs. Pull your bib from the drawer, Write down the event and date. Pin it on or fold it in a pocket. Get out the door.
APRIL FOOL’S DAY NO FOOLING 50 (any distance)
Demonstrate that you’re no fool. Get out on this day and test your resolve not to be silly about health. Run a serious 50 MINUTE Fartlek.
Swedish for "speed play", this workout alternates running speeds/efforts. "Unlike tempo and interval work, fartlek is unstructured and alternates moderate-to-hard efforts with easy throughout. After a warmup, you play with speed by running at faster efforts for short periods of time (to that tree, to the sign) followed by easy-effort running to recover" says Runner's World.
Walkers can mix-up their effort as well in a fartlek.
Don't have bibs yet? Request FREE Earned Runs bibsRequest Bibs/Contact, and do it!
SCIENTIFIC ARGUMENT FOR CROSS TRAINING? The results of a scientific study performed using health data from more than 80,000 persons in England and Scotland were released in November 2016. The findings indicate that “significant reductions in all-cause mortality were observed for participation in” cycling, swimming, racquet sports and aerobics. Similar significant reductions were not found for participation in football (known as soccer in the US) and running.
CNN reported in detail on findings of this study in late November, describing how it was designed and carried out, as well as providing additional comments from the author and lead investigator, Dr. Pekkar Oja. It’s makes for very good reading if you wish to use exercise to improve health long term and remain an injury-free runner.
The article, "Swimming, Racquet Sports, and Aerobics Slash Risk of Death, Study Says" written by Hailey Middlebrook for CNN.com states, “If participants were active, no matter how, they reduced their risk of death by 28%.” Which means that runners were shown to obtain the health effects of being active in general, but not at the level of participants of three other types of sports. It was shown that “in particular -- swimming, aerobics and racquet sports- - were linked to even stronger decreases in risk of death from both heart disease and other causes”.
The finding that running was not tied to greater reductions in mortality was “surprising to the researchers, as running is frequently recommended as a longevity-boosting activity”. An explanation offered by Dr. Oja was that “runners did not stick to their program for the full study period, and therefore the sport didn't affect long-term health”.
"To benefit from exercise, the most important thing is to stay injury-free," said Dr Nieca Goldberg, a cardiologist and medical director of the Joan H. Tisch NYU Langone Center for Women’s Health, who was quoted by CNN and not involved with the study. Her thoughts were that, "a well-rounded mix of exercises is the best choice”.
The CNN article additionally emphasized that 1) facts show ANY exercise is more protective than none; 2) participation may be more regular and continuous and thus protective if the activity is loved/enjoyed; 3) variety in exercise activity may prevent sidelining boredom and injury; 4) sports that engage both arms/upper and legs/lower body may push us to work at a higher level of intensity and thus receive a greater health benefit; and 5) weight-bearing exercise must be added to a program that primarily involves swimming.
Earned Runs conclusions:
Comments: All research has limitations. Relatively few participants in this UK study population identified running or football/soccer as their activity, which may have affected the findings. Swimming was most popular among surveyed women and cycling among men .
A calculation designed to show how closely the reporting of activity correlated with activity recorded by a wearable device (accelerometer) revealed it would be mediocre. There was no comment on socioeconomic status among groups, which may confer independent health risk/advantage. The cost of access to some sports and activities may be prohibitive.
But, to date it is the first study to compare different sport activities in this way, and offers insights as to how runners might boost the health benefits of their training plans/programs without necessarily jeopardizing running performance.
Personal: I started swimming and taking tennis lessons last month, partly in reaction to this study and also to broaden my exercise and social experiences. Also I thought it would enable an honest discussion on this type of 'prescription'. I hope it will lead to running improvements as well. Please comment on your own experiences.
RUN, SWIM, AND, PLAY HAPPY!
Vera Bradley Preppy Poly Triple Travel Bag for Sport/Travel/Work ($158 or less)
This is for women runners. If you have need of a ‘gym’ bag, to carry running clothes, gear and related items, consider one that may serve more than just this one purpose. Especially if you take one to work or on trips.
Last year I purchased a bag from Vera Bradley, the Preppy Polly Triple Travel Bag in black, 20” wide x 13 ½” high x 7’ deep (12” drop straps). It has 2 big exterior side pockets (one is a compartment for a laptop up to 15”), and most importantly a ‘trolley sleeve’ that allows you to carry it on the handle of a roller suitcase. All the closures are secured with a zip. The large middle compartment has 5 interior mesh slip pockets.
It looks very professional, possessing clean lines and a no-slouch construction from stylish polyester (Polly) water-repellent fabric. The bag is typical VB in that it’s lightweight, but NOT quilted, so it doesn’t have a typical VB look. I don’t know why it’s called “Preppy”.
I’ve used mine on trips to pack running and business clothes. Once at my destination it doubles as a meeting case to carry business materials; I’ve also used it as a shopper and purse. It can fold up, although a bit bulky, and be stored in my bigger piece of luggage, depending on how full I stuff that piece. In these days of restricted airline carry-on piece numbers (only 2) it very much can extend my baggage capability upon arrival. OR every day it can go with me to the gym carrying shoes, workout apparel, and dry snacks.
It’s only shortcoming (for me) is that the straps are a little long if I use the handles to carry it in my hand for an extended time rather on my shoulder. That’s only an issue because I’m a bit short.
Last year it was offered in other colors, a rose, claret, blue, and black. Online the selection is now confined to black and blue, with sale bags in a few of the other colors (Amazon only offers the claret). VB has similar newer duffel models, each with a shoulder strap and short handles (one has reinforced corners, the other a reinforced bottom section) that may be easier for toting, which come is bright pastel-ish colors.
However, I love/value the wide zippered opening and compartments of the model I have, which don’t seem to have been re-created in the newer version. The black color is sophisticated and can grab big city style points. A fashion-conscious, Tumi-toting, Millennial male colleague complemented the bag’s good looks!
Bottom line, think broadly when shopping for running gear if you want to stretch the use of some items. In the retail world it’s fits into the the “athleisure” trend in which athletic wear transitions to work and beyond.
WEBSITE WEDNESDAY: REQUEST BIBS
Yesterday’s post was about beginning now to plan for summer. The season doesn’t absolutely need to start on June 1, the meteorological beginning, June 21, the astrological first day, or even Memorial Day, the traditional kick-off holiday, of summer.
You decide when it should be celebrated for running purposes. If you’re finished with school classes and finals in May, the 15th might be designated as day #1 for some students, faculty, and parents. You also decide when it ends.
Whichever date you choose, be sure to consider using free Earned Runs bib to mark progress on your summer challenges. Don’t have any challenges yet? Start planning. Yesterday’s post also brought up the topic of streaking: running, walking/hiking, cycling, swimming etc. A streak can be constructed from the daily performance, without fail, of any exercise activity you love.
There will be more BLOG posts suggesting summer challenges. If you plan to idientfy an early date for the start of your ‘summer’, best to begin planning now. And request bibs.
MENTAL PLANNING FOR SUMMER RUNNING: BEGIN TODAY
Now that winter is officially over, the spring season is the time to begin planning for summer running. Remember the 4 seasons re-vamp proposed by Backpacker.com that takes maximum advantage of available daylight, featured in the BLOG on February 8, 2017 about “The Brightening”?
Here’s the description provided in the blog:
THE BRIGHTENING: would start February 4; “glorious season in which you can finally plan a trip without a triple set of headlamp batteries”
THE SHINING: should begin May 5; “the season of long days fit for big miles”
THE DIMMING: onset of August 7; “reminder to seize every weekend”
THE DARKENING: starts November 7; “perhaps plan a moonlit hike”
In accord with this daylight-based seasonal system runners, walkers, cyclists, hikers, backpackers, and all other outdoor exercise enthusiasts should work out at a least a rough draft of their hoped-for upcoming activities by May 4, in advance of the start of “The Shining” season on the next day. If you wish to take advantage of all that solar illumination, that is.
So, here’s a bit of a teaser article to start the mental process that precedes making a schedule and then taking action, on May 5.
“Should You Run Every Day?” by Megan Harrington for ACTIVE.com develops arguments both for and against daily running, also known as STREAK RUNNING. Walkers can consider themselves included in this discussion because like runners they are already mentally geared up to get on the road and moving at least several times a week, and may find this an attractive challenge.
“Streak Running” was covered at length in a blog post on May 22, last year, in advance of the 2016 summer running/walking season. On July 4, another blog post reported on the progress I was making with my streak. And a final report card assessment blog was posted after Labor Day.
There was ongoing whining about how difficult it was ... blah, blah, blah. As another summer is approaching, I seem to be looking back on my prior streaking experience with greater fondness. When viewed in hindsight, it WAS a ‘pain’ to warm-up, stretch, get ’mobile’ and out the door, but it WASN’T THAT terrible. And it did provide a DAILY sense of accomplishment a bit sweeter than that which comes from completing a day’s pre-race training session. Each run’s tally mark on my summer Earned Runs bib became part of the picture of that summer’s fun*.
Harrington starts her article by telling readers about the ending of the longest streak ever that lasted more than 52 years!!! There’s a link to another story about the Manchester, England runner, Ron Hill, who holds this record. It’s not surprising he has many other notable running-related accomplishments. Actively running streakers with 47+, 46+, and 45+ years under the belt are also mentioned. It’s interesting that none of the 4 men seem to be motivated by the record-making aspect of their daily runs. It’s more about the enjoyment.
Doesn’t this seem like a perfect activity for a summertime challenge?
Take the first step and request your bibs for streak running, walking/hiking, cycling, or swimming. Like yesterday’s post on Professor Lupin and the boggarts, it will take just 2 minutes!
* My 2016 streak ended before the summer ended; very disappointing. This year I'll try to do better, by starting earlier and ending when intended.
TODAY IS THE FISRT DAY OF SPRING 2017. A perfect day to begin work on reaching a challenging goal that’s been put off for later, time and again. To initiate forward movement where before there was none, Niklas Goeke’s article, “How to Stop Procrastinating-A Lesson from Professor Lupin; What Harry Potter Can Teach You About Productivity" might provide a push. It was recently featured on Medium.com’s Personal Growth page.
At first glance it’s self-help lesson that has a great hook if you’re a fan of the JK Rowling book series about wizards and witches. The piece offers advice on how to stop dreaming about fulfilling ambitions and start working towards the reality. But, as with other aspects of life, this one can be applied to running or exercise training.
To clarify, there are would-be-runners who just cannot seem to take the first step toward becoming a runner. And there are runners who wish to become stronger, faster, and less prone to injury, yet each week goes by and training has not begun. Included are runners who seek to gain proficiency in a cross-training activity or another sport, but have made no moves to expand their physical capabilities and exercise interests. Each group faces the prospect of starting out on a daunting journey.
Goeke indicates that, “fortunately, the solution to dealing with daunting projects is the same as what Professor Lupin taught us about handling a boggart”. For those of you who cannot remember, a boggart is a wretched magical creature that hides in closed dark places and, when discovered, assumes the form of the entity most feared by the finder. For Ronald Weasley it was a giant hairy spider; for Neville Longbottom it was Professor Snape.
The author takes readers through the spell that helps to render a boggart harmless. First, we are instructed to laugh at the scary creature/goal, imagining it to be ridiculously un-scary and easy to defeat/achieve. Then, he says, apply the “2 Minute Rule” introduced by James Clear, which Goeke explains. Work at a task that moves you toward the goal for two minutes. He says “technically” you’re only obligated to make a solid effort for 2 short minutes. But once started you can continue working as long as you wish.
This “2-minute rule” equates to the part of the Hogwart’s professor’s spell which requires performing a specific wand motion and making the incantation “Riddikulus”.
For hope-to be-runners this task could be walking out the door and running 2 minutes. Or searching the internet for a training program, registering for a goal race, or getting fitted for running shoes at a specialty store. For just 2 minutes.
For wanna-be cross-trainers/triathletes, it might be getting on a spinner cycle at the gym, easing into the pool, or joining a swimming lesson session. For just 2 minutes. For strength trainers, it’s picking up dumbbells and going through one set of unfamiliar moves. For just 2 minutes.
Once started on the first task of the larger goal, with a limit placed on expended time, we may become caught up in the work. Laughing at the ridiculously small bit of work we carved out for this simple small effort, distracted from the boggart we feared, we can start to climb the huge mountain of accomplishments that lead to the summit dream.
I set out to expand my athletic capabilities and take up the sport of tennis early last month, in February. The thought of buying ‘gear’ (non-running shoes, unfamiliar skirt-like clothes, balls, beginner racket) was causing me to keep putting it off. Like bathing suit shopping. Not to mention I was almost paralyzed by the prospect of finding a nearby affordable club and lessons. This was going to be expensive. I had managed a call to one coach and was put off, and that experience provided an excuse to stop looking.
By chance in mid-March I drove by another club that advertised low cost lessons, turned the car around, and signed up immediately. I started lessons the next week. Each step was difficult and I had back-up reasons ready to avoid moving forward.
But the coach blocked all my wimpy worries with reassurances, said I didn’t need any gear or equipment, only to show up. And lesson slots were available throughout the day and evening. Me, laughing nervously: “I can do that!” And then I did it. Boggart gone.
I still have an available stock of excuses for avoiding each practice or lesson. But, every small step forward seems almost ridiculously easy compared to the initial one of finding a club and coach within my budget.
It took about 2 minutes to pull into the club parking lot, walk in, and ask to meet with the tennis pro. No kidding.
WEEK 10 HALF MARATHON with SAINTS DAYS 5k and 10K Training Plan
You are officially entering the second half of the plan this week! Congratulations for making it this far. There are no more ‘tune-up’ races, after this last weekend of St. Patrick’s Day-themed events. You’ll be looking ahead toward your goal half marathon.
For those who have already completed a ‘Saints’ 10K, an 8mile long run is scheduled for Saturday, possibly your longest ever run. Wow. Remember it’s more important than ever to foam roll after or before and after this run, and perform the other warm-up and cool-down routines.
While you’re outdoors covering this distance, enjoy the first full weekend of Daylight Savings Time and Spring.
SPRING AND SUMMER SHOE GUIDES have been released recently. Two different review articles are available if you are merely curious or earnestly looking to try something new. It’s tough to decide which are best, given the wide variety of styles and design and construction features offered. One thing is certain, prices are increasing.
COMPETITOR.COM by Brian Metzler; 19 shoes reviewed
Editor’s Choice: Nike LunaEpic Low FlyKnit 2
Best Updates: ASICS Noosa FF, *Mizuno Wave Rider 20
Best Value: *Brooks, Launch 4
Best Debut: *On-Running CloudFlow, Sketchers Performance GoMeb Razor
RUNNER’S WORLD; 23 shoes; data from Show lab available, and Shoe Finder Guide
Editor’s Choice: New Balance, Fresh Foam Zante v3
Best Update: *Adidas Supernova
Best Buy: Brooks Ravenna 8
Best Debut: Reebok OSR Harmony Road
SHOES APPEARING ON BOTH GUIDES (MARKED WITH *):
*361 degrees, 361-Sensation 2
*Altra Intuition 4 (women’s) and *Instinct 4 (men’s)
*Brooks, Launch 4
*Hoka OneOne Bondi 5
*Mizuno Wave Horizon
*Mizuno Wave Rider 20
*New Balance 1080 v7
*Newton Running Gravity 6
*Saucony, Kinvara 8
*Sketchers, Performance GoRun 5
*Under Armor Speedform Gemini 3
Sometimes, just looking down and seeing bright shiny new shoes on our feet can be a boost to running attitude and performance. It's a luxury. Remember to DONATE old shoes especially if you are fortunate enough to be able to replace last year's pair before their appearance suffers horribly.
See the GENEROSITY page for donation link. (to this PDF)
MY ST. PATTY’S DAY 10K: I ran it March 14 because the Saint’s actual feast day Friday, March 17 would be a travel day for me as would the next day, Saturday. Conditions were very cold and windy, mostly crisp and clear except for several minutes in which there was a weird snow band-like white-out. The roads were icy and hard-snow covered, crunchy. If you think I am setting this up to explain a poor performance you’re wrong.
It’s a set up to an explanation of I why I changed the goal of the run.
Instead of a race against the clock/previous best 10K, it was to be a ‘just finish’ event. I was wearing 2 pairs of pants, 2 pairs of socks, 4 top layers, a knit cap, earmuffs, and a hood (some of the way). Movement was not going to be fluid and easy.
Because the footing was uncertain and slippery a good deal of the way, safety was the number one concern over performance. Going into spring running with a broken bone or soft tissue injury was not something to list under the heading of a ‘win’, so the slow going wasn’t unexpected or discouraging. I took my time.
It was early, just at sunrise. The birds, bless their feathery little bodies, were singing cheerfully. How do they do that when it’s so blustery? Some cottagers must have put up wind chimes in the great weather of the preceding month because I heard them tinkling and bonging along the way. Perhaps the chimes were always there and I had never noticed the sound before, but something made the run’s audible portion memorable. I recall thinking that a good name for this day’s goal finish of 6.25 miles would be the “Beauty of Birdsong 10k”.
The return leg of the course was into the wind. I was so happy to be finished and to have fulfilled the commitment to complete a 10k in honor of my namesake saint’s day. Strangely it was one of my slowest but most satisfying finishes, ever.
Hopefully you are not discouraged from completing your planned event, whatever you decide it will be.
BRIDGE TO PHYSICAL SELF
Running, walking, and fitness activities enable us to experience our physical selves in a world mostly accessed through use of fingers on a mobile device.
EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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