Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hero's of the Week


This year, like many others, we, the staff at SLRC, ventured down the Moab 1/2 marathon event over spring break. We have a great time working the expo, hanging out with people, running and mountain biking. This year was basically the same, with one exception.

During our venture home we found out that something happened to our cash box. Something serious. Like, it totally disappeared! Holding on to that thing was my responsibility and it was looking like, well, I had failed. Then a very comforting phone call came.

"My name is Dale and I live in Colorado. My wife and I were visiting Moab over the weekend and we came across something that we think belongs to you." As I listened I could not believe what I was hearing. "Yeah, we couldn't find a place to camp so we pulled over along the road to look at the map and figure out what to do, when Sally says, as she looked out the window, "There's money all over the ground." "

Anyway, to make a long story short, for 2 hours Dale and Sally gathered our missing cash from sagebrush and tumbleweeds and dumped it to their car. Because the wind had been blowing the money was literally all over the place. They worked hard and fast and I'm sure many people driving by wondered what was up and, lucky for us, nobody ever stopped to find out. Eventually, they even found our smashed flat cash box 1/4 mile down the road!

Not only did Dale and Sally find our money, they drove almost 500 miles (one way) to deliver it back to us. What a thrill is was to meet them and shake their hands and hear them tell their story. We made a great friendship and hope to see them again. In a time when the news hasn't much good to report we salute them for their honesty and diligence. And hope in the future we can pass along the favor. Thanks Dale and Sally, we are thankful and proud to know you.


Tuesday, March 24, 2009

From treadmill to road to treadmill to road to treadmill to ro...

Spring is in the air! There are some wonderfully warm days mixed in with some spring rain and snow. It is so refreshing and liberating to be able to run outside in warm weather, yet visits to the treadmill are sometimes still a necessary evil. With training as changing and variable as the weather, there is a way to make your treadmill and road workouts feel similar so it is not such a shock on your body to make those changes or that you are surprised by how much harder the pace is outside.

This really is a tricky topic because so much depends on the treadmill that is actually being used. So many people assume that the miles per hour/pace readout on the treadmill is accurate. Do not assume this! Actually, assume it is wrong! The biggest thing you are worried about on a treadmill is that you are working at the same effort as you would be outside. Here are some things you can do to make the two efforts match more closely

Workout using a heart rate monitor. This piece of technology really helps to level the playing field. Basically, if you learn what pulse rate you normally run at outside, then make sure to do that same pulse inside no matter what the treadmill numbers say. Then you will know for sure that you are getting the same cardio workout.

Consider using the incline. Sometimes it is frustrating to go outside after running on a treadmill because your legs get more tired from doing more of their own pushing. You can remedy that by using the incline button. Each machine is different, but in general, an incline of 1-2% will feel more like the work you do outside.

Be patient. There is a difference between running outside and inside when it comes to environmental influences. It takes the body time to adapt to all the weather and terrain changes outside so the reality is that it takes some consistent running outside to feel more comfortable outside. Treadmills can be boring, but at least the weather and terrain is predictable and easy to adapt to.

Over the years, I have had to make the jump many times from treadmill to road and back again. I love the warmth, consistent pacing, restroom availability, and early dark morning or dark night convenience of a treadmill. I also love the freedom, sunshine, wind in the hair and trail terrain of running outside. I appreciate and accept what both forms of running have to offer and now I know what to expect out of each one. No longer do I let the nuances of one or the other ruin a perfectly good chance TO RUN!

And finally, here is a great story to remember if you are stuck on a treadmill more than you would like to be and wonder if you can really get road fit on a treadmill.

Dr. Christine Clark works 25 to 30 hours a week as a physician and has two young children. Oh yeah, she also lives in frigid Alaska. She didn’t let these obstacles prevent her from training for the 2000 U.S. Olympic marathon trials. She did nearly all her training on a treadmill, including 15-mile runs at a 5:50 per mile pace at a room temperature of 70F. At the February 26 trials it was 70F, and Clark averaged 5:50 per mile to win in a huge upset with a time of 2:33:31, earning her a spot in the Sydney Olympics.

Now that is rockin!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Moab Half Marathon Tips from Nicole and Stacy

We’re Real Runners, or so we thought. Our expectations and results of the Moab Half Marathon last year weren’t exactly what we had imagined. After having finished the race suffering through the stomach flu, we swore we would never go back to Moab not even to see the Arch. Bibs for Moab 2009 would teach us that some things take more than one try to conquer and achieve. If we had another opportunity to run the half marathon in Moab, we’d take note of the 13.1 lessons learned.

.1 – Salt Lake Running Company is our favorite place to accessorize
13 – Training in SLC blizzard temperatures takes dedication
12 – Pack some toilet paper for the pre-race
11 – Adding five minutes to your PR is okay if you have the flu
10 – Don’t run 13.1 miles on a stress fracture
9 – Gu is good but only when taken as directed and not with Gatorade
8 – All you can eat pizza and pasta buffets are overrated
7 – Tube socks from the local True Value make the best legwarmers (SEE PIC BELOW)
6 – Don’t believe anyone who says the course is all down hill
5 – Pack your own oatmeal – the hotel’s complimentary breakfast won’t cut it
4 – Make sure you receive the bib for the half and not for the 5K before the bus
3 – Wearing matching shirts doesn’t mean you’re going to have the best run
2 – Will power can get you to the finish line, even when you’re in pain
1 – Believe you can achieve and you will

Nicole Santiago - There's nothing like feeling the sense of accomplishing a distance with only your legs and willpower to take you there. I've learned to love something I never liked before. Starting a race is exhilarating when I look around thinking how admirable it is to know the other runners trained just as hard both physically and emotionally to reach their goals and dreams. My shoes, aka my runners, travel with me around the world and encourage me to explore different routes. Hitting the pavement helps me run off my frustrations and find solutions. And last but not least, I run so I can enjoy my guilty pleasures: Cafe Rio salads and desserts.

Staci Basilius - I run because I love the way I feel after I've finished a long run, there's nothing that compares with that high...it's addicting. Running makes me appreciate my body, I'm always amazed by how I can push it and I know it will respond. And I especially love those weekday mornings when I've woken up at 5am to run 10 miles I stroll into work feeling invigorated and my co-workers have barely rolled out of bed. I'm lucky enough to have a great running partner, who pushes me when my mind isn't in it and who helps the time fly by with great conversation (except when we're running up hill, then the conversation has to wait).

Monday, March 9, 2009

Your Story--Bill and Traci Clark

Traci and Bill, you guys are fabulous! The most amazing thing is not just that you gave a bad habit, but replaced it with something that was hard! Running is fun, but still challenging and sometimes downright painful nonetheless. So, great job on your change of lifestyle! And, we will all cross our fingers for you Traci.

This is my (our) story. My name is Traci Clark my husband is Bill Clark we took up running 3 years ago after I gained a few (20) pounds. We were both smokers for about 20 years, and decided one day we had spent enough money killing ourselves. I quit around my 40th Birthday and Bill was 42. We both ran a local 5K and thought we were pretty cool, Yeah we just finished a 5K! Then, Bill ran Salt Lake City Marathon 2007 and qualified for Boston. He ran SL Marathon 2008 and qualified again. He really inspires me! I ran the Salt Lake half for 2 years and finished around 2 ½ hours in 2007 and 2:02 in 2008.

I will be running the SL Marathon this year and my goal is to qualify. We are both are signed up for the Grand Slam this year. Whew! I’m a little scared but this will give me 5 chances to try and qualify for Boston so we can both go.

Bill is so sweet and says he will wait for me. He is truly the love of my life always pushing me when we run together, which is not very often. He’s too fast. That’s why I married him on Valentines Day. The last couple of years running have truly been the happiest years of my marriage. WE ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT! And are very addicted.

Monday, March 2, 2009

How fast can you run your marathon?

Have you ever wondered how fast you can run a marathon? A marathon is long enough that it can be hard to figure out what kind of goal time to shoot for. There is a cool little workout called Yasso 800’s that can give you a pretty good idea of what kind of time to aim for as your marathon finish time. The Yasso 800’s are named after Bart Yasso, the race services manager for Runner’s World for over 30 years. Here is what Bart had to say about using them in training,

"I've been doing this particular workout for about 15 years," he continued, "and it always seems to work for me. If I can get my 800s down to 2 minutes 50 seconds, I'm in 2:50 marathon shape. If I can get down to 2:40 (minuses), I can run a 2:40 marathon. I'm shooting for a 2:37 marathon right now, so I'm running my 800s in 2:37."

Before discussing the pro’s and con’s of this workout, here is how to actually do the Yasso 800’s. The full workout is 10X800 at goal marathon pace with EQUAL amount of walk/jog rest in between. So if you want to run a 3:30 marathon then you should be able to do 10 X800 in 3:30 with that much walk/jog rest in between. But do you do all 10 every time? No! If you want to know approximately where you are at to begin with then do the whole workout. Other than that, you would work up to doing 10 of those 800’s.

Here is an example. Hopefully the marathon you are getting ready for is about 10 weeks away to progress through this workout. Let’s say, that you want to know ABOUT where to begin and you have no real idea as to how fast you can run a marathon. In that case, your first time doing them should be all 10. Pace yourself so you can finish all 10 at pretty close to the same pace. At the end, if you run all 10 within about 5-10 seconds of 4:00 min per 800, then you can probably figure that you are ready to run within about 5-10 minutes of 4 hours.

Now, that you know an 800 time, you can progress through the workout by doing them once a week. You can choose to stay with the same time you got on the test workout and just try to get in shape to make that pace easier or you can pick it up 10 seconds per 800 and try 3:50. Either way, do this workout only once a week in the middle of the week and start with ONLY 4 of them at goal marathon pace. Add one more repeat each week until you reach 10 of them. The final 10 X 800 workout should land about 2 weeks out from the race.

Some people criticize the above workout by saying that it is off by 15-20 minutes and that a marathoner doesn’t need to do that kind of workout. I disagree. Any marathoner would benefit from speed work. Now there are other kinds of speed training that are indeed more fitting for marathons than this workout, but if you don’t ever do anything fast then you can give this a go because it will most certainly help you. If you are already doing tempo or lactate threshold runs, then do Yasso 800’s every other week and add 2 800’s instead of just one each time.

The other caveat to this workout actually predicting your marathon time is that you do have to get in your long runs. Doing a long run every other week may or may not be quite enough to have the aerobic base you need to apply this speed. But don’t get too excited and do too many long runs because you are overexcited to run your 800 time in a marathon race. Weekly long runs should only be done by a runner who has been running long runs 12-18 months already. Then, all that is left is that you are rested and well fueled during the marathon. If anyone out there tries it, then let us know how it goes. Did you really run your marathon in the same time as the Yasso 800’s?