Should I do it or not?

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Who is not familiar with the inner voice that says, “I’m tired, today resting would sure be nice”? But running.COACH is telling me to do a 60 minute tempo run. The dutiful runner laces up her shoes and goes out to run the workout regardless. Few others actually listen to their bodies, lie down and take the day off. Maybe those mindful runners are thinking of Alberto Salazar, the winner of the New York City and Boston marathons in 1980, 1981, and 1982. When asked the question about the key to his success, he stated, “My problem was that I was training too hard”. Thus, he built in, on a regular basis, a complete rest day that allowed him to improve his performances.

Sometimes less is more. We should take this to heart. In particular, if it is not the ‘lazy guy’who just doesn’t want to train, but the “true” inner voice. Training and relaxation go together like the tides. Only when one has recovered from a workout, is it time for the next training session. At times this can take longer than normal. Sometimes the last workout was more stressful than usual, or that last training session just was not productive, or there was little time for sleep or rest since the last workout. Whatever the reason, it’s smart to listen to your body.

Here are my tips for you:

  • Rest and recovery is also training. Resting exclusively is not training 🙂
  • When looking at today’s workout, consider your current professional or family demands, social environment, and, above all else, your internal voice.
  • After a rest day, your motivation is usually much greater than before the rest day.
  • Exercising in an alternative sport (Biking, Swimming, Nordic Skiing) adds variety and additional motivation for running.

by Valentin Belz

Broaden Your Training Base

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Two out of every three runners have to deal with some sort of orthopedic problems during the course of a year. This number is alarming, and is due in large part to the fact that running as a sport is underestimated in its complexity. We typically care only about how many miles we run and at what rate we run those miles.

Laufen sieht einfach aus, ist aber eine komplexe Sportart
Running looks simple, but it is a complex sport.

Anyone who plays golf, dances or swims, automatically focuses on his/her technique. As runners, we rarely, if ever, think about our running mechanics or technique. We feel that we learn to walk upright at the age of around 12 months, and somewhere along the line during that learning progression we figure we master the art of racing. There’s actually much more to it. Running is a complex matter that involves endurance, coordination, strength, flexibility and speed. Those who want to run quickly and avoid injuries are primarily guided by these factors. The more we invest in endurance, coordination, strength, flexibility and speed, the more stable our foundation becomes.

As runners, we are limited or constrained by the weakest of these five factors. As you plan your training calendar, you need to address a more holistic approach to training. We should be athletic and invest in endurance, coordination, strength, flexibility and speed. The goal is to enlarge your base so that your performance is rooted in a stable foundation. Exercises to help with all five of these factors can be found at running.COACH.me under “Videos” and here.

Je breiter das Fundament, desto stabiler die Leistung
The broader the base, the more stable the performance.