ALL YOU 5K 2023 Turkey Trotters who wish to run a New Year’s Eve 5k or a Resolution 5k Run on New Year’s Day and who would like a bit of STRUCTURE to get them pointed in the right direction to prepare for another fun event, this is for you. It’s adapted from earlier Earned Runs “On to the New Year” plans offered after Thanksgiving Day for those who followed an abbreviated 3 to 4 -week plan to get ready for their Turkey Trot. It will be posted on the Resources page.
You had nearly a week to recover from the Thanksgiving Day 3.1 mile run and mentally rest up. The general rule is to avoid intense workouts for a length of time determined by the race distance: 1 day for every 1 mile of race. Thus after a Thanksgiving Day 3.1 mile (5K) race you would take 3 days to rest, with only easy short runs, cross-training sessions, or walking. This plan starts November 29, today, at about the level of intensity scheduled just before Thanksgiving Day..
OR you can devise your own plan to prepare for an event roughly 4 weeks later. Either way, think about using the past several months’ training effort to position yourself for a vigorous end to the year 2023 or confidence boosting beginning to the year 2024.
RUN AND MOVE HAPPY
GOOD LUCK TO ALL THE TURKEY TROT participants who will be lining up for an event tomorrow. If you’re running by yourself or need to find a mental exercise to help get you past the rough spots on the route, check out this article by Kara Cutruzzula on SHAPE.com. "Why You Should Go On A Gratitude Run". It must be a classic as it was published in an earlier year and updated in 2020.
If on your own for a holiday run or walk, what better Thanksgiving Day “exercise” than an outdoor session spent reflecting on the good things in life worthy of thanks?
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
AFTER RUN STRETCHES, FOAM ROLLING, AND DEAD BUGS for Earned Runs Turkey Trot Preparation Plan 2023 The details of Earned Runs’ 22-Day Turkey Trot Preparation Plan include preparing for your walk-run sessions with MYRTLs, then following up with stretches, and intermittently performing a foam rolling routine and dead bug exercise.
MYRTLs were discussed in the previous post. This post will provide a link with information about post-run stretches and how to perform them, and other links to demonstrate foam rolling and dead bugs.
Andrea Gaini wrote a piece for RunnersWorld.com that demonstrates commonly prescribed moves. THESE ARE STATIC STRETCHES. The broader topic of stretching is very complex. If you care to read an in-depth discussion about static versus dynamic stretches and when to perform them check out a previous ER post (https://www.earned-runs.com/blog/science-friday-static-stretching).*
Bob and Brad are physical therapists that together offer solid advice on musculoskeletal issues of importance to runners and walkers as well as just about anyone. They are the first source I look to for safe and practical ways to accomplish training goals or fix problems that require exercises or other PT moves. Check out their version of the routine if you’re new to this post-exercise or pre-exercise warm-up technique. See another link below or check out the RESOURCES page for more links. Michael Easter has a piece on how foam rolling works that is referenced in a previous ER post.
Urban Kick YouTube
The DB exercise strengthens your CORE - abdomen and lower back. I learned this move using a stability/Swiss ball. The Juniper Physical Therapy video shows how to perform the DB with a ball. The Crossfit demonstration shows how to make the exercise easier then progressively more difficult, and using a block. I learned using a ball held in place by one leg and opposite hand and holding the position of one leg/one arm down for a count of 3-5! Read a previous RESOURCES page article for more discussion on the importance of core stability.
(The image above reflects the discussion in the RESOURCES article about the importance to running of having a strong body chassis like an automobile https://strengthrunning.com/2011/11/dont-let-your-engine-outpace-your-chassis-how-to-build-a-strong-body/)
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
*My personal approach to stretching is to perform several passive (referred to here as post-run) stretches before getting out of bed most mornings to help with overall flexibility and mobility as an older high mileage runner, and to help prevent plantar fasciitis, which I am prone to develop. I usually run more than an hour after performing them, and except rarely, will not be focused on performance in a race. Dynamic stretches are done just as I'm heading out to run.
Bob and Brad Physical Therapists Foam Roll Routine
Michael Easter for MensHealth.com
Juniper Physical Therapy & Fitness
Monica Ksel: Dead Bug with Stability ball
CrossFit Lakeland Dead Bug Progression
(easy - difficult)
NeckandBack.ca Beginner Dead Bug without ball
Robert Gillanders Dead Bug Progression; legs only to legs plus arms
Earned Runs Core strength BLOG post (updated 11/14, 2023)
The 22-day Earned Runs 2023 Thanksgiving Turkey Trot Preparation Plan is a day-by-day schedule designed to help last minute participants train to cross a finish line injury free on November 24. It’s not a traditional 12, 10, or 8-week long program that promises to turn “couch potatoes” into runners.
The purpose of this plan is to allow those who hope to join in the fun of this event by alternating walking and running intervals. Individuals should be actively walking at least 15 minutes in one session regularly and feel ready and able to run for a duration of 1 to 5 minutes at a time.
This plan introduces novices to warm-up (MYRTLs) and cool-down (post-run stretches) routines, a self-massage technique (foam rolling), and one core strengthening exercise (dead bug). There are many other routines, techniques, and exercises that benefit runners and walkers and improve performance. But as some followers have commented, 22 days is not enough time to comprehensively train!
A hidden plan purpose is to excite some to continue training after Thanksgiving Day, as confidence and competence is built over just these few weeks, and the process is enjoyed as much as the race. The less discomfort, the greater the ease with which each day’s workout will be accomplished, thinks Earned Runs, and the more enjoyable the experience. For this reason a few training practices are being introduced to smooth the way.
So, what’s a MYRTL and what is it doing on a training plan? “MYRTLs” is the nickname used by coaches and trainers for a series of hip-girdle mobility moves designed to loosen hips made stiff by lots of running, lots of sitting, and by lots of both!
The mechanism behind the utility of such moves, according to coaches/trainers that promote these routines, involves a process called “imbibition”. Because cartilaginous and other tissues that contribute to hip joint structures are avascular*, hydrating fluids are not delivered to them through blood vessels (like in most other body tissues) but are forced into them by movement. The tissues imbibe or “drink” the fluid which fills the joint space.
MYRTL moves enable imbibition, they say, kind of plumping and “juicing” these tissues, such that they can provide cushioning and allow smooth joint movement. Each Individual MYRTL move forces fluid in a different direction within the joint space.
I’ve yet to find scientific references that address the athletic aspects of this teaching. However, my hip movements seem to be much improved from personal experience (discussed below) with MYRTLs after a significant strain. I continue to perform MYRTLs before workouts, and after roughly 10 years, haven’t noted adverse effects. And have no problems getting on and off my fat tire bike!
The links below demonstrate how to perform a routine before you head out to train.
Enjoy mastering MYRTLs and becoming an athlete as you train.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
MRYTLs Demonstration by Wolf Creek Track Club USATF Registered Coach Brandon Wise
Runner’s World Australia and New Zealand demonstration:
*Anatomy, Cartilage (Stat Pearls)
FYI Below is part of a previous post on this topic:
“DISTANCE RUNNERS DEVELOP STIFF HIPS, AS DO PEOPLE WHO SIT A LOT. In the former group, tightness or stiffness of the hip joints is caused by the repetitive movement of endurance running combined with weak gluteal muscles, according to an article from Athletico Physical Therapy on hip flexor stiffness. The article also indicates that in people who sit a lot stiffness is, “well, caused by sitting a lot.”
I noticed my own hip stiffness after taking a new bicycle out for a long ride in the early spring years ago. Back then my weekly running mileage was the most it had ever been. I had attempted to lift and swing my right leg back and over the bike seat to dismount. The move was difficult and required my leaning the bike very close to the ground to lower the seat height enough to clear it with my leg During the dismounting motion I felt a sudden painful pull. Oh, oh!
Five months of rest was required to recover from whatever happened in my right hip area. After the injury resolved I noticed that maneuvering one leg over any low barrier, like a chain fence or wall, still required special effort. I worried about incurring another injury and decided to seek professional help. As a result, clams, leg raises, and other hip strengthening, mobility, and balance building exercises became a part of my daily/weekly routine about 10 years ago.
At the time, I was told gluteus medius strength must be addressed, as this muscle helps to stabilize the pelvis during forward running and weaknesses or imbalances can lead to knee and other joint problems. And that a mobility routine would loosen my stiff hips. “MYRTLs” is the nickname used by coaches and trainers for these hip-girdle mobility moves. Much later I learned that MYRTLs act to hydrate joint tissues, helping to prepare cartilage, ligaments, and tendons for smooth running.
Coaches and trainers commonly prescribe hip mobility routines to runners for the purpose of “juicing the joints” (in Coach Jay Johnson's words) in preparation for workouts, often combining them with exercises that build hip muscle strength.”
NOTE: The very earliest Earned Runs blog posts were to introduce followers to the Turkey Trot tradition in America. As posts now resume after 2 years of a hiatus, it seems most appropriate to address this topic again. Turkey Trot events are so much more than competitions. The following is an update of the 2015 post
GET READY! Decide today that you’ll participate in a Turkey Trot (TT) event in 2023. Whether or not you’ve trained to run a 5k distance, there’s fun to be had joining crowds of others in an organized race or planning a custom event with a small group. You might also consider a solo outing that sets a personal first effort time or improves on an existing personal record (PR). For many years I ran my own solo race before getting to work in the kitchen preparing food for our feast later that day.
An article by Jenny McCoy for RunnersWorld.com, “How the Turkey Trot Became the Most Popular Race in America,” might inspire some to get going.
Honor an existing TT tradition or establish a new one. Regardless of what you have done on past Thanksgiving Days, change up this year’s effort to fit circumstances as needed. The pandemic has wreaked havoc on family and friend traditions for many since 2020. We now realize alternative celebrations can be meaningful and fun but require ingenuity and flexibility to pull off.
A Turkey Trot can be walked, skipped, walk-run, or run. The start and finish lines can be crossed pushing a stroller in many races Youngsters manage to successfully utilize a combination of all these moves. The 5K distance is 3.1 miles. A brisk walking pace will allow a finish in less than an hour, plenty of time to return home and eat a slice of breakfast pie!
Not excited about a 5K? Make it a fun one-mile distance, or a longer competition.
Your first step will be to identify a race near home or location of the dinner you hope to enjoy that day, if an organized event is your style and is feasible. Or request Earned Runs bibs for a custom designed solo or smaller group competition. Most simply, decide you will manage without bibs.
The next step will be to use the few weeks prior to Thanksgiving to prepare physically for the event. You may have a tried-and-true training regimen in mind. If not, an internet search can provide advice and free plans. However, most plans will be 4 or more weeks in duration and require adjustment to a 22- day schedule, if you're starting today.
Earned Runs has a plan designed to help you prepare to safely run/walk a 5k distance over just these few weeks. Check it out at the end of this post.
Before you head off to train, here’s a bit more background on the Turkey Trot in America from a 2015 blog:
Buffalo NY has a solid place in the history of the event, as it held the first TT in America in 1896, sponsored by the YMCA. It was an 8K, not the shorter 5k that is popular today. The article explains how the tradition grew and expanded.
One historical fact jumps out: women were not allowed to run the Buffalo race until 1972!!! It had not occurred to me before reading this piece that women were excluded from this (and probably other) holiday event for so many years. It makes sense that 1972 would be the year the race opened its gates to female runners; in April that year women were finally included in the Boston Marathon.
Are you fired up yet? Here's a link to a race finder site (Running in the USA) to help you locate a holiday race nearby. This post has a link to the REQUEST BIBS page.
Still need encouragement? What if you knew costumes were common and welcomed at Turkey Trot races? Read the Runners World article “10 Delightfully Weird and Wonderful Turkey Trot Costumes” for more about this race day custom.
Start planning todayl There are only 22 days before the holiday, If you will be involved in preparing dinner and don't think you can manage getting to and from an organized race, run/walk a personal customized race like I have in years past. REQUEST Earned Runs bibs to make your effort a bit more official,
RUN AND MOVE HAPPY!
2023 Earned Runs Turkey Trot 22 Day Preparation Plan
22-day Preparation Plan to run/walk a 2023 Turkey trot
to Note this plan starts today, Wednesday November 1, 2023. Each subsequent week begins on a Wednesday. Also note that on the Turkey Trot Race Day the schedule says to run/walk 30 minutes, record the distance, then walk the remaining distance.
The plan prepares you to run/walk 30 minutes so if you cross the finish line before then, you're done! If not you can continue to run/walk but the best insurance against injury is to cover the 30 minute distance at your training pace, then take it easy for any remaining distance.
It's important to try to make note of (guesstimate) the distance so that you know what you were able to accomplish in 30 minutes if not yet at the finish line.
Hopefully the thrill of competition will encourage you to continue training, commit to another race, and eventually complete a goal race fully prepared for that distance.
The purpose of this short Preparation Plan is to allow participation in a great American tradition in 2023 despite only a few weeks of training.
RUN AND MOVE HAPPY!
2023 Earned Runs Turkey Trot 22-day Preparation Plan
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. In 1978 I began participating in 10K 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 and longevity.
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