Monday, September 15, 2008

The THRILL of the HILL

Austin, TX is an amazing place to live and exercise. We are soooo lucky that everything here is either uphill or downhill!! I hear it all the time, How do you run those hills with a smile on your face. First of all it isn't a smile, but a grimace!!! Hills are like anything else in life, the more time you spend on them, the better you get. PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE!!! So when I tell people that I ran up Ladera Norte twice yesterday, they look at me like I'm INSANE!! There is an art to ascending and descending those Austin hills. One effective trick is to train on them regardless of what mode of exercise you choose. Hill repeats or intervals are another great trick. This will improve your form and mental toughness as well. Practice on the downhills as well. Good controlled form and body positioning can reduce the risk of injury. Body weight is a huge factor. It is no fun to pack those extra pounds up the hill, then have that extra weight pounding on your bones, tendons, and joints coming downhill. Spend time in the gym with resistance training for those legs. A strong core is a big help as well. Last but not least, Flexibility!! Stretching on a daily basis will be huge positive. So what are you waiting for? Get out and embrace those hills!! CHEERS, TRAINER TODD


HELLO ALL!! After that horrible Nike Human Race 10k, I decided to run the Casa for Kids 5k the following weekend. I'm not a big fan of competing back to back weekends, but I needed to test myself. I was looking for a little redemption. It helped that the temperature was in the low 80's at start and that it was a short race with only a few hundred competitors. I felt good and raced well. I finished second overall with time of 18:11 @ 5:50 per mile. I let a 15 yr old kid beat me. It wasn't my proudest moment. This goes to show that sometimes you will have great workouts and sometimes have bad ones in the same week or month. Stay positive and realize that you will always have a better workout or race!! The body does weird things to us throughout the year. You will have peaks and valleys. Enjoy the roller coaster and keep chipping way at it!! Quitting is easy, finishing is an accomplishment!! So walk or run that extra mile this week. Spend that extra day in the weight room, on the elliptical or yoga class. KEEP AT IT!!! Trainer Todd

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Nike Human Race Recap

WOOOOOW!! It was a long, hot 10k on Sunday night!! I made my way down to Congress Ave with fourteen thousand of my closest friends. I hopped a barricade with a few other brave souls to inch my way towards the front starting line. I looked up at the start clock as it was counting down from fifteen minutes. That seemed like forever in the hot crowd. I didn't get a chance to warm up before due to the controlled chaos. As the start approached the temperature was pushing 95 degrees. As Evil, the race announcer, introduced Lance Armstrong and Mathew McConaughey the huddled masses squeezed closer in to get a glimpse of star power. Olympic swimmer Aaron Peirsol counted us down and boom. Everyone darted across the stat line to catch up to Lance. As I passed by Mathew McConaughey, I wasn't feeling to strong. My goal was to keep Lance in sight. I hung around for the first 2 miles then lost him. I made one of the most common mistakes in a race, I started to fast plus the heat factor. This was getting ugly quick. By the half way point I had settled into a rhythm. I was getting passed by runners and I couldn't do anything about it. This was new territory for me. I'm usually the passer not the passe! At mile 4 a familiar face passed me. My old rivalry Chris. I tried to hang with him, but didn't have the legs. As I made to turn onto Congress Ave, I had the finish in my sights. With the cheers from Austin, I found that extra kick I had been waiting for. I finished with a respectable time of 39:49. A painful 6:25 mile pace. I managed 43rd overall. I made bad decisions throughout the race. It started with no warm up, to starting off to fast in the first two miles, to not consuming enough water on the course, to mentally quitting. Good lessons learned!! TRAIN SMART, RACE SMART, Trainer Todd

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