<![CDATA[Run Healthy, Get Stronger - Blog]]>Thu, 26 Nov 2015 13:42:25 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Skechers GoRun3 Review]]>Sun, 23 Mar 2014 16:51:13 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/skechers-gorun3-review
In my current search for my Boston Marathon shoe, I decided to go back to my faithful training/half marathon shoe brand Skechers. I will admit, I have been reluctant to run anything longer then 15 miles in Skechers because when the GoRun2 (GR2) came out, I had some terrible foot cramping and toes going numb because Skechers decided that 1/2 sizes above 12 (I wear 12.5 in running shoes) didn't make sound business sense. Albeit, I still love the brand and running anything under said dooms mileage Skechers and I were a perfect fit. Especially in the 5k-Half marathon race distance.

I first was introduced to the Skechers GoRun 3 (GR3) at the 2014 Houston Marathon. Since I had a bad experience in the GR2 (which I notified Skechers Performance division about), I was really hoping that some tweaks were made (i.e. a longer shoe last). At the Houston Marathon Expo, I tried on a pair of GR3's and was quickly reminded of why I really enjoy running in Skechers. The GR3 felt perfect. Nice cushion, a wider toe box than the GR2 and in fact, the shoe (size 12) had enough room (thumb width) for some toe splay.  So being the shoe whore that I am...I bought them! Since January, I've been taking the GR3 out on numerous training runs but nothing longer than 10 miles.  So with the dilemma of what shoe to run in for Boston, it was time to give them a go and write a full review.

No sooner that I decided to run in the GR3 I received a package from Skechers Performance

(Full Disclosure
,
I receive Running shoes from Skechers Performance Division as part of their brand ambassador program. I am not required to write a positive review. This review is based on my own personal experience).

In said package, I received the GoRun3, GoMeb Speed2 and
GoBionic Fuel (reviews in the works).  It is like Christmas in March!!! I love running shoes and since I am currently in the testing phase of a Boston Marathon shoe, it is a perfect time to receive such a gift.
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Designed with an improved upper (bright blue upper w/ dark overlays) and neon yellow laces, it’s hard not to see these baby's coming down the road. As mentioned above, the fit of this shoe is near perfect (for me). With a wider toe-box (forefoot) and an updated last (GR2 was too narrow), it would be difficult not to really like this shoe!  The shoe is light and flexible and still built on a 4mm drop. They’re fairly "minimal" (8mm with insole, 4mm without), with a SUPER cushy ride. The M-Strike technology helps promote a more mid-foot strike and most of the time in other brands, I really can't feel my proper striking pattern but in the GR3, you can feel it in every stride and truly understand and appreciate what a mid-foot strike is.

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The GR3 adds more stability to the previous version but as stated it is still lightweight, flexible and breathable. The front section of the uppers has a Power-prene mesh construction (the triangle looking panels) for breathability and allows for maximum toe splay. The side panels feature a flat lock stitching detail for seamless feel and lighter weight while a soft smooth fabric shoe lining allows for sockless barefoot wear. Which I tend to do from time to time!

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The Skechers GOrun 3 retains the same proprietary lightweight Resalyte™ injection molded midsole with memory retention that assists with impact absorption. The independent circular GOimpulse sensors offer the same flexibility and feedback for a more responsive running experience as before with no changes at all to the position or number of pods. In other words, there was not a lot of change to the outsole which is a good thing considering there was nothing ever wrong with it in the first place.

So how did the GR3 perform?

Well out of the box, I took the GR3 out on a 20 mile run. The GR3 responded very will. You really can feel the M-Strike technology working at this distance. If anytime I felt I was over striding (running on balls of feet) you could feel it in this shoe. You receive instant feedback and  in my case, I was able to fix my stride and carry on. The one thing I noticed at the end of the run was that the top of my foot never went numb like it did with the GR2.
The GR3 has a thinner tongue which helped me not tie the laces so tight which was one of my problems with the GR2 because of thicker tongue. The tongue is still stitched on to the shoe to keep it from moving around but it seems to be "Cut" to size so you don't have all the extra tongue material bunched up under the laces. Great improvement.

My feet didn't get tired nor my legs. I did run with the extra insole for added cushion and that could be the reason why but 20miles in 2 1/2 hrs...no achy feet or legs...right out of the box? I think the GR3 responded exceptionally well for this runner!

Overall?

At 6.9 ounces (men’s size 9) this shoe is light. There’s pretty much no extra “stuff” on the shoe that can keep the weight down. The price is also REALLY nice. At $80-85 for a shoe that offers as much as this one, how can you pass it up!

Kyle

Train Hard = Race Easy, Train Smart = Race Fast

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<![CDATA[Safety Rules when RunningĀ ]]>Mon, 10 Feb 2014 15:03:14 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/safety-rules-when-runningPicture
Recently, I posted some "simple" rules when running the streets or trails on my Rockwall Running Club (RRC) members only Facebook page and I wanted to share these rules to with you (and possible get more suggestions) so everyone can enjoy running.

"Being RRCA (Road Runners Club of America) coaches, Coach Barrett and myself want to make sure everyone is safe when running the streets or trails. Please make sure you all know follow some simple rules when running anytime during the day.

  • Don’t wear headphones. Use your ears to be aware of your surroundings. Your ears may help you avoid dangers your eyes may miss during evening or early morning runs.
  • Run against traffic if running on the road. If running on the sidewalk or multi-use trails, travel on the right and pass on the left.
  • Never run more than two abreast if you are running in a group. Don’t be a road or trail hog.
  • Don’t run down the middle of the road or trail.
  • If you are running an out-and-back route, don’t just make a sudden u-turn at your turn around point. Stop, step to the right to allow oncoming traffic the opportunity to pass. Ensure the road or trail is clear of oncoming traffic (runners, walkers, cyclists, etc.) then make your u-turn. Making a sudden u-turn without looking over your shoulder is a good way to get hit.
  • Alert pedestrians when you are passing them – don’t assume they are aware of their surroundings. A simple “on your left” warning will suffice.
  • Be alert on blind curves.
  • Stop at stop signs and ensure oncoming traffic yields to you before proceeding across a road. Don’t assume cars will stop if you are entering a cross walk.
  • Respect private property along your route. Don’t relieve yourself in the neighbor’s bushes.
  • Don’t litter. If you can’t find a trash can, carry your trash home.

These simple rules can keep everyone safe and even non-runners at ease."


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<![CDATA[Rockwall Running Center and Skechers Performance at Metro PCS Dallas Marathon Expo]]>Tue, 03 Dec 2013 15:58:58 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/rockwall-running-center-and-skechers-performance-at-metro-pcs-dallas-marathon-expo
It's race week here in the DFW area for the metro PCS Dallas Marathon and Half marathon and that has several area runners super excited! The race benefits Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, which has been the primary beneficiary (since 1997) of the MetroPCS Dallas Marathon.  This race has donated more than $3 million to TSRH which continues to treat children with orthopedic conditions, such as scoliosis, clubfoot, hand  disorders, hip disorders and limb length differences, as well as certain related neurological disorders and learning disorders, such as dyslexia. Admission is  open to Texas children from birth up to 18 years of age. Patients receive  treatment regardless of the family’s ability to pay. 

I am also exited to be working with the Rockwall Running Center and Skechers Performance Division at the metroPCS Dallas Marathon Expo this Friday and Saturday (Dec 6-7). RRC will be hosting the Skechers Performance line which been releasing some outstanding running shoes. So, stop by the Expo located at
 
Kay Bailey Hutchison Dallas  Convention Center:
650 S Griffin St, Dallas, TX 75202.  

In addition, if you stop by on Friday (Dec 6) US Distance running superstar Meb Keflezighi will be on hand Friday from 2-4 pm to autograph his book and take pictures.

So come on out this weekend and check the Skechers Performance line and what the Expo has to offier.
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GoRun Ride 3
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GoRun 3
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GoRun 2 Nite Owl
Kyle

Train Hard = Race Easy, Train Smart = Race Fast
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<![CDATA[My Running Family]]>Tue, 26 Nov 2013 19:46:57 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/my-running-familyPicture
In many of my posts I have mentioned the Rockwall Running Club (RRC) and the impact the group has on my running life. Yes, running is a simple exercise that you can perform anywhere and at any time, but the pure enjoyment I have running with the RRC is beyond workouts. It's the friendships and family style hoopla that makes the group strong unlike any other (IMO).  There are many occasions in life (personal, wellness, faith, friendship) that you need to surround yourself with positive people that encourage and relate to your situations. The RRC is so much more than your typical running club/group. Each member has a story, each member thrives on helping one another (no matter the scenario), each member shows how to persevere. Also, "every" member knows "No runner is left behind". This is the bond that is forged between all members (new and old) on the very first group run attended.

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This morning is a great example of the comradery or "bond" that the RRC has on one another. It's a cold 30 degree morning for us morning procrastinators (the 0500 crew), and yet...we are at track to get better, to get faster or simply to keep our mental edge for upcoming races.  As we head out to warm-up, the RRC over-achievers (the 0415 cronies) are finishing up their respective workouts on the track (great group). 

It's these moments, when you look around and see all the smiling faces of your running group that you just say "I love this group". Sure, there is always the "I want to go back to bed"  statement of the morning but being part of a running group gets you up before the sun rises and makes you accountable to better yourself every day.  

All of this is possible because of the positive influences set forth by the owner of the RRC, Coach Barrett Hopper.  Barrett has organized this group with every competitor, runner, walker, Super Mom and Dad in mind.  It's these contributors that have  established the family mindset in the RRC.  We quarrel with one another like any family member,  confided with another,  push and pull one another, laugh, cry, what-have-you and the one thing that never changes is the fact that the RRC members are always there when you need them. A lot like what families do and/or should do. 

If you are interested in starting to run, looking for a group to run with or just need a new scene. Come out to one of RRC's groups runs (Calendar can be found here) or you can find us on Facebook

Kyle

Train Hard = Race Easy, Train Smart = Race Fast

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<![CDATA[Road to Philadelphia 8K and Half - Week 9-11]]>Mon, 28 Oct 2013 19:30:52 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/road-to-philadelphia-8k-and-half-week-9-11Well it has been a few weeks since I posted on how my training is going and I apologize.  After the Rugged and Raw 10K trail race, I pretty much torched my knees. During my training runs, my knees would act up which would cause my hips to change my running gait. I have a philosophy that once my form breaks, my workout is complete. So I had to modify my training a bit and just focus on track, a short easy run, tempo and long run (if able). It’s pretty much textbook training, only difference is that I kept the distance short to avoid potential long term damage.

I still cross trained to keep my fitness up and with the help of my RRC training peeps and Coach Barrett Hopper of the Rockwall Running Center, I was able to stay focused and continue training. I can't tell you all enough how great this group is. We may be a small group compared to most but we all know one another and can truly call each other family.

So here is last weeks training.

Monday -
Cross-training day

Jump-Rope - 10mins

Superset (5 sets)
  Row - 500m
  Push-ups - 20reps
  Front Raise - 20reps
  Barbell Curl - 15 reps

Jump Rope - 10mins

Superset - 10mins
  Crunch - 1min
  Bicycle Crunch - 1min
  Leg Lift w/ thrust - 1min
  Hallow Hold - 1min
  Hanging knee ups - 1min

(repeat the above sequence one more time)

Tuesday -
Woke up refreshed and ready to take on the day and then realized it was 0600. Dang it!!! I missed my track workout. Apparently I needed my sleep so I opt'd to perform my w/o on the treadmill.

Ran at 2% incline and performed 6x1K w/ 200m recovery (90 secs).  Avg 3:50 (6:10 pace) for the 6x1Ks. Ran 7.5 miles in 60mins. Ran in Go Speed.

Wednesday -
This week my plan is to string up consecutive days of running. As I mentioned above, the past few weeks I have been recovering from the Rugged and Raw trail race where I twisted up my knees pretty good. So today is the first of hopefully several running days and I headed out to the Rockwall Running Center to run with the group for an easy 8 miler. After yesterday's workout, I felt pretty good and the knees held up nicely. A positive sign! Ran in my Saucony Kinvara 3.

After workout:

High and low rep Squats: (4 sets)
Reps - 20 (30sec rec), 5 (30sec rec)

Repeat the above reps 4x and your 30sec rest is just changing out the weight.

SuperSet: (4 sets)
Dumbbell Lunge: 12 reps
Leg Extension: 20 reps

Try and keep your recovery to 30sec or sooner between exercises. It's all about time under tension.

High and low rep stiff leg deadlift: (4sets)
Reps - 20 (30sec rec), 8 (30sec rec)

Repeat the above reps 4x and your 30sec rest is just changing out the weight.

Core: (5 sets)
Weight Crunch w/ feet off ground - 20 reps
Swimmers (small - med kicks) - 20 reps
Leg thrust - 20 reps
Side lying w/ legs elevated crunch - 20 reps per side

Perform each exercise in series then rest for 30sec and repeat for "X" amount of sets.

Thursday -
Headed out for a little shake out run. Quads and hammies  bit sore from yesterday's w/o but not too bad. Ran 4 miles in my Altra Provisions.

Morning Cross-Training:

Superset (4 sets)
.25 mile on hand bike
Dumbbell Military Press - 15 reps (30lb)
Neutral Grip Pull-Up - 10 reps

Rest 30 secs after last exercise and repeat for "X" amount of sets.

Superset (4 sets)
Row - 250m
Mountain climbers - 100
Push-ups on medicine ball - 10 reps

Rest 30 secs after last exercise and repeat for "X" amount of sets.

Core Superset (4 sets)
Toe-touches - 20 reps
Leg-lift with thrust - 10 reps
Hallow Rocks - 10 reps
Straight leg Cross-crunch - 10 reps (ea. side)

Friday thru Saturday -
Life happens, so not much occurred here

Sunday -
Sunday Morning Rise and Shine workout:

Jump Rope - 5min
Push-ups -  25reps
Bodyweight (BW) Squats - 25reps
BW Lunges - 25reps (ea. leg) 
Plyo Push-ups - 25reps

(Repeat for total of 4 sets, 30 sec rest between  sets)
 
BW Shoulder Press - 25reps
Hallow-Rocks - 25reps
Swiss ball knee tucks -  25reps

(Repeat for total of 4 sets, 30 sec rest between sets)
 
Crunches - 25reps
Leg lifts w/ swiss ball - 25reps
Ab wheel - 25reps
 
(Repeat for total of 4 sets, 30 sec rest between sets)

Thank you for taking a moment out of your day and entertaining me by reading my posts. Training is difficult, if it wasn't everyone would be doing it.

Kyle

Train Hard = Race Easy, Train Smart = Race Fast
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<![CDATA[Road to Philadelphia 8K and Half - Week 8]]>Tue, 08 Oct 2013 17:15:56 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/road-to-philadelphia-8k-and-half-week-8Monday -
No Morning Run.

Afternoon Workout:
Warm-up: 2mins on hand bike.

Pull-ups (17 reps), Push-ups (70 reps), Jump Rope (7min)
Pull-ups (16 reps), Push-ups (60 reps), Jump Rope (6min)
Pull-ups (15 reps), Push-ups (50 reps), Jump Rope (5min)
Pull-ups (14 reps), Push-ups (40 reps), Jump Rope (4min)
Pull-ups (13 reps), Push-ups (30 reps), Jump Rope (3min)
Pull-ups (12 reps), Push-ups (20 reps), Jump Rope (2min)

Perform each exercise one after another, no rest.

Tuesday -
After last weeks training I really needed to get my head right. I originally had Hill Repeats planned for this morning but my legs were just not feeling right. So I spoke with Coach Barrett Monday night and discussed an alternative workout and so I headed out to the track at meet with my Rockwall Running Club (RRC) buds. Today we were running 12x400m w/ 400m recovery. This would be a controlled effort so the plan was to hit 85 secs on each 400m. My times were consistent (86, 87, 86, 87, 86, 84, 84, 83, 85, 85, 85, 84) which I couldn't have been happier with due to last weeks training. Ran in Skechers GoMeb.

Afternoon workout:
Warm-up: 1x single leg dead lifts (10 reps)

Tri-sets (5 Sets)
Double Leg Press (20 Reps), Farmers Walk (50 yds. -70lbs), Squat (15 reps)

After you complete the Tr-set, rest for 30sec-1min then move continue on until 5 sets are complete.

Tri-Set (5 sets)
Stiff-leg dead lifts (15 reps), plyo-jump lunges (20 total, 10ea. leg), Hamstring Curls on Swiss Ball (20 reps)

After you complete the Tr-set, rest for 30sec-1min then move continue on until 5 sets are complete.

Finisher: 12mins of pure awesomeness!!!

20sec of Bicycle Crunches/10sec rest/20sec of leg lifts/10sec rest/20sec of straight leg cross crunch/10sec rest

Continue the above sequence for 12mins total for a great ab w/o.

Wednesday -
Oh My!!! Today was a humid morning. I headed out to the RRC and met up with my buds Barron, Jim, Carrie, Tiffany, Brain and Momma Jo ;) for an easy 10miler. Legs felt pretty good even after yesterdays workouts but became difficult when approaching miles 6-10. Legs felt like lead! Nonetheless, kept pushing thorough and finished a warm, humid, soaking wet 10 miler. I am so appreciative of Carrie, Tiff and Momma Jo pulling me the last few miles. We all were a little sore today. Ran in my Altra Provisions.

Texas State Fair Day!!!
The Texas State Fair is the one time a year that I actually look forward to trying fried food. This year we tried, Fried Thanksgiving, Fried Cuban Roll, Fried Meat Loaf, Fried Millionaire Pie, Fired Nutella and one of the staples of the State Fair...Fletcher's Corn Dogs.

My family shares one order of each of these fried foods that way we just sample rather then indulge in a cardiac arrest meal. Also doing it this way, you don't feel bad about throwing it away if you just don't like it (which we do quite frequently). Anyway, we sample the fried foods, pet some animals and watch shows. Walk around a lot and simply have a fun day with the family.

Thursday -
Woke up a tad bit late (0415) probably because my body was in shock of what was digested yesterday. Nonetheless, didn't get to run with my RRC peeps so ran an easy 6 miles in the neighborhood. Ran in Kinvara 3.

Afternoon Workout:
Warm-up: 2min Jump Rope

Tri-Set (5 sets)
Seated Dumbbell (DB) Military Press - 15reps
Wide Grip Straight Bar Pull-Up - 10reps
Standing Push Plate - 15reps

After you complete all three (tri-set) exercises above, rest 30sec then continue with the remaining sets. After 5 sets, rest 1-2mins then move on to the next Tri-Set.

Tri-Set (5 sets)
Body weight (BW) Skull Crusher - 15reps
Seated DB Hammer Curls - 15reps
Close grip push-up - 20reps

After you complete all three (tri-set) exercises above, rest 30sec then continue with the remaining sets.

BW Skull Crushers are performed with your hands on a bench, chair or box and your feet on the floor. Lower your head down past the bench and press your way back up using your triceps. Once it gets difficult, go ahead and drop to your knees and rep out the remaining reps. If you need a more difficult version, place your feet on a bench, chair or box instead of the floor and rep out your set.

After 5 sets, rest 1-2mins then move on to the Finisher.

Finisher: 12mins of ab mayham!!!

20sec of Hallow Rocks/10sec rest/20sec of Toe-touches/10sec rest/20sec of Bicycle crunch/10sec rest

Continue the above sequence for 12mins and your only rest is the 10secs between exercises.

Friday -
Today, I woke up feeling pretty good. My running bud Tiffany came out to my neighborhood to run my workout (2x15min Threshold Run at HMP-MP) which I was very appreciative of.  We headed out for our warm-up and talked about the State Fair and what we ate, LOL and discussed the route we will be running a bit. Tiff gave out a chuckle and said, "it's funny that I am giving her directions". She is directionally challenged so I agree it was comical. After our warm-up, we got down to business. The first 15mins was not that bad I ended up running 6:43 for 2.24 miles. Everything was feeling pretty good. We had a 3min recovery period and then ran our second 15min threshold run. Pace was controlled and no real aches and pains beside the working muscles. As we approached the final minutes of our run, the working muscles were screaming and breathing did get a little out of sync (it didn't help the humidity today was hovering around 93%). I finished the second 15min run at 6:51 for2.2 miles.

Tiff and I regrouped and recovered for a bit (We got to see some of our other running buds  out on their training run which was a welcomed site) then finished off with our cool-down. I ran in my Mizuno Levitas.

Afternoon workout:

The following circuits are timed, so try and beat your time every set.

Quad-Set: (5 sets) Perform each exercise one after another for one set, rest for 30secs then continue this process for remainder of sets.

Side-to-Side hops - 20reps
Prisoner Jacks - 20reps
Shuffle 20yds - 3x
Jump Rope - 100 revolutions

After completion of 5 sets, rest 2min and move on to next circuit.

Tri-Set: (5 sets) Perform each exercise one after another for one set, rest for 1min then continue this process for remainder of sets.

Row - 2min or 500m (which ever comes first)
Push-ups - 20 reps
Mountain Climbers - 100 reps

After completion of 5 sets, rest 2min and move on to next circuit.

Tri-Set: (5 sets) Perform each exercise one after another for one set, rest for 30sec then continue this process for remainder of sets.

Double leg hops up stairs - 2x (jog back down)
Sprint up stairs (jog back down)
Body Weight Squats - 25 reps

After completion of 5 sets, rest 2min and move on to final circuit.

Tri-Set: (5 sets) Perform each exercise one after another for one set, rest for 30sec then continue this process for remainder of sets.

Toe-touches - 20reps,
Swimmers (Big kicks) - 20reps
BOSU Cross-Crunch - 10reps (10 reps each side for total of 20reps)

Saturday -
Headed over to Cedar Ridge Preserve (CRP) for the Rugged and Raw 10K/20K trail run supporting the Back on My Feet organization that is dedicated to helping disadvantage people get back into a mainstream lifestyle.

I was running the 10K and thank goodness I did! CRP is a difficult course. The steep inclines and rocky terrain were something I was not expecting in the DFW area. WOW!!! This 9mile of trails is definitely one of the hardest trails I have walk/ran in my novice trail running experience. Enough about how in awe I am of this trail, lets get to the race.

I started off with the lead pack of the 10K for about the first 1/2 mile. I was looking to keep a 9:30-10:00 pace on this race (not knowing what I would encounter later on). I realized quickly that the group in front of me was going way faster then I could or wanted to keep up. The first mile I hit 9:15. It wasn't long that I started to regret not wearing a little more protection on my feet as the terrain turned from dirt to rock. I was wearing Merrell Trail Glove 2 and there is no cushion in these bad boys. So I felt every rock, stone, pebble and tree root for he next 4 miles. Ran the second mile in 9:03.

I just hit my groove in the second mile and the nearest person in front of me I could not see and there was no one behind me that I could see either. I was feeling pretty good until I was coming down a stepped embankment which leads you to a bridge crossing. I noticed a couple walking on this bridge and I was trying to figure out how to pass them when a toe grabber got a hold of me on the decline and instead of falling on my face I was able to catch myself with my other leg and in doing so, twisted it pretty good. No sharp pain but it definitely hurt my pace slowed down in the third mile to 10:43. This is the section of CRP that is freakin' hard!!!

The next mile I was climbing what seemed like a vertical wall. My quads and hammies were burning and all I was thinking about is "damn, i love this workout!" At this point I was thinking of what my Ultra Trail runner friend Nick would always mention on my trail runs, "walk the inclines and run the flats/declines" although some of the declines were extremely difficult I did what I could. Next mile I clocked at a blazing 14:30 min pace. I don't remember much of the next two miles as my knee was quite sore, I just wanted to finish :-) but I ended up finishing with a time of 1:08 for the 10K.

At the end of the race, I was hobbling a bit. Checked on my knee and there was some swelling but all in all nothing that a couple of days couldn't fix up. I waited around to see my friend and trainee Samantha come though (she was running the 20K) but I ended up missing her when I went to my truck to put on some warm clothes due to the cold front that came in. I ended up heading on home after about an hour of finishing the race because the knee was throbbing at this point. So I gathered my things, called my wife and headed home. Just so I can mow the yard :-)

Sunday -
No morning run as my knee kept buckling under me. So took it easy and tried to stay off my feet but no such luck. Since it rained yesterday, I had to mow the yard today and that wore me out because of the leg. No biggie though, I at least got a workout in!

Kyle

Train Hard = Race Easy, Train Smart = Race Fast
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<![CDATA[Road to Philadelphia 8K and Half - Week 7]]>Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:10:17 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/road-to-philadelphia-8k-and-half-week-7So last week started off great but ended with dead legs, sore body and lack of motivation. Apparently, I might have I pushed too much with training and I suffered the effects of it in the latter part of the week. My Tuesday afternoon workout session is what took me out and it was just a struggle getting out of bed to get my runs in.  So, lesson learned...maybe :) Although, I do have a 10K trail race this weekend so I might scale back the afternoon workouts a bit.

Here is my recap of last week's training.

Monday -
No Morning Run

Afternoon Workout:
(5 sets)
Jump Rope - 1min
Barbell Curls - 20 Reps
Body Weight Skull Crushers - 20 Reps
Dumbbell (DB) Lateral Raise - 20 Reps

Perform all 4 exercises in succession, that's one set. Continue with remaining sets with no rest.

(5 sets)
Jump Rope - 1min
DB Alternating Curls - 20 Reps
DB or cable machine kickbacks - 20 Reps
DB Front Raise - 20 Reps

Perform all 4 exercises in succession, that's one set. Continue with remaining sets with no rest.

(5 sets)
Jump Rope - 1min
Reverse Curls - 20 Reps
Dips - 20 Reps
Rear Delt Fly DB or Machine - 20 Reps

Perform all 4 exercises in succession, that's one set. Continue with remaining sets with no rest.

Finisher:
Push-ups - 10x10 Reps rest only 10 secs.

Tuesday -
This was a great morning for a workout! Met with the Rockwall Running Club (RRC) and Coach Barrett had some tunes kickin' before the start of our workout (w/o). All the songs were good until Destiny's Child "Survivor" came on!
RRC knows how to have fun and get the blood flowin'...well Beyonce does for sure :)

Once we were pumped, we headed out for our warm-up and performed 3x1M repeats on the track. My goal was to hit 6:00 pace for the repeats and based on my times (6:06, 5:58, 6:02) I think I survived the workout! Finished off with some cool-down mileage and then started my day.

Afternoon Workout:
Warm-up: 5x10reps w/30sec recovery stiff leg deadlifts.

This warm-up is just a primer for my leg workout today. The weight does not need to be heavy on this warm-up, just heavy enough to start breaking down the muscles and get blood flow to the area.

Trirset #1: Double Leg Press (3x10reps)/Single Leg Wall Squat (30sec each leg)/500m row.

Perform each exercise in succession and rest for 1min prior to going onto the next set. Once complete, move on to the next Triset.

Triset #2: Single Leg Press (3x10reps)/Plyo-Lunges (3x20 reps)/Stairmill (1min at highest speed)

Perform each exercise in succession and rest for 1min prior to going onto the next set. Once complete, move on to the next Triset.

Triset: Single arm Farmer Walk (50yds)/Squat shuffle (15 yds. down and back = 30yds)/Jump Rope 1min.

Perform each exercise in succession and rest for 1min prior to going onto the next set (3 sets total). Once complete, move on to the Finisher.

Finisher: Frog Jumps (15 yds.)/Jump Squats (x5). Repeat 3X with no rest.

Wednesday -
Needless to say that this morning I woke up a bit sore...actually, a lot sore! My afternoon workout session torched my legs, especially my hammies. Luckily, today is an easy run so I headed (more like hobbled) to the RRC for an easy 8 miler. I found it really hard to keep form from miles 6-8 as my hammies were just not happy with me. When we finished I attempted to lift my leg and stretch my hamstring and I couldn't even straighten it out and my leg missed the half wall. I chuckled, then attempted again  with a successful leg lift and stretch.

No Afternoon Workout:
Not because I was extremely sore, but because of work...Really!!! :)

Thursday -
Last night, I was extremely tired by 1730 but my son and daughter had activities at  the same time and at different locations. So there was no time for relaxing. My wife and I shared the load and off we went to our respective activities for the kids. When I finally returned home, I was extremely tired (running on vapors) and irritable. I apologized to my wife and went to bed around 2015. When I woke up, I had some pain in my knee in which I had a hard time straightening and flexing. Apparently, I slept pretty hard and never moved so the weight of my knee on knee (I was laying on my side) caused a tender spot which I couldn't shake out. So I opted not to run.

Afternoon Workout:
After a few hours, the tender sport subsided so I went to the gym  for some HIIT.

Warm-up: 2min Hand bike

Circuit 1: TriSet 5 rounds, 20 reps each. Rest 30secs between rounds.
   Flat Bench Press
   Body Weight (BW) Row
   Push-ups

Rest 2mins and move on to next circuit.

Circuit 2: TriSet 5 rounds, rest 30secs between rounds.
   Neutral grip pull-ups (10 reps)
   Dips (20 reps)
   Straight bar chin-ups (10 reps)

This circuit you can (and should) use bands or a weight assistant machine to perform the workout. This is an endurance and strength building circuit; don't be ashamed of getting assistance from bands or weights to lift you up. You'll need it!

Rest 2mins and move to the next circuit.

Circuit 3: TriSet 5 rounds, 20 reps each. Rest 30secs between rounds.
   Swiss ball knee tucks (pikes)
   Leg lift w/ hip thrust (Swiss ball between ankles)
   Hip thrust (Swiss ball optional)

Rest 1min and move on to the finisher.

Finisher: Perform as many pushups as possible (normal position) then drop to your knees until you reach failure.

Friday -
Today I ran in my neighborhood for a 2x10min Threshold run. My knee was still sore which leads me to believe that my Wednesday easy run caused the soreness because of bad running form causing medial rotation during my stride. My hamstrings were still tight as well so this run was going to be interesting.

My warm-up miles were a little difficult as I had a hard time getting warmed up. After a few miles I went ahead and hit my first of two 10min threshold runs figuring that they will warm up eventually. The first threshold run was difficult, could never really get a good extension and toe off due to the tight hammies. So, I kept the stride compact which felt like more work but finished the first w/o at 6:16 pace.  This is a lot faster than I was shooting for (6:40 range) so I made sure to get a good recovery (approx. 3:00mins) prior to the second 10min threshold run. The temps started to rise around this point (77 degrees) and I welcomed it as it got my mind off my legs. I focused on form and kept the short compact stride and finished the next the next 10mins at 6:32 pace which I was happy with. Finished off with some cool-down miles and headed home.

No Afternoon Workout.

Saturday -
Just wasn't in the right state of mind today. Just like the two previous days, my legs are tired/shot...what have you. Headed out to the RRC in hopes for 10-12 miles to make up for some miles I have missed this week. In the end, I ended up with 8 easy miles which I am not complaining too much.

No Afternoon Workout.

Sunday -
Stayed up late last night so woke up later than normal. The weather was a little humid but beautiful! Goal to day was 12 miles in hopes that I could press for 15 just because. I had a good 8 miles until some nausea hit me out of the blue. I had to walk a bit to regain my composure but in the end, I picked up the pace for 9, 10 and 11 (avg. 7:30) and staggered into mile 12.

Time to call it a week. I need to just recover and "NOT" hit deadlift as hard as I did on Tues. It made for a bad week.

Kyle

Train Hard = Race Easy, Train Smart = Race Fast
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<![CDATA[Road to Philadelphia 8K and Half - Week 6]]>Mon, 23 Sep 2013 13:25:19 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/road-to-philadelphia-8k-and-half-week-6Last week was a fun week of training! I ended up running a local 5K to see where I am currently in my fitness and figure out where I can make adjustments. The week startred of a bit warm but finally Fall came to visit and the weekend was beautiful! Cool temps equal faster times and great training ahead...can't wait!

Here is a recap of last weeks training.

Monday -
Ran in my neighborhood and got an easy 6 miler in. Nothing to fancy on this run. Ran in Saucony Kinvara 3

No Afternoon Workout.

Tuesday -
Today met some members of the Rockwall Running Club (RRC) and Coach Barrett at the track. The workout today was fairly easy, 4x800m (3:04, 3:02, 2:59, 2:59) with 800m active recovery.   Workout was fairly consistent, ran in Skechers GoSpeed.

Afternoon Workout:
2min hand bike - forward

Superset: pull-ups/hanging toes-to-bar. 2x10 wide pull-ups/toe-to-bar, 2x10 close pull-ups/toe-to-bar, 2x10 neutral pull-up/toe-to-bar

2min hand bike - backwards

Superset: 20 push-ups/20sec plank/10 hand to shoulder taps. 3 sets

Superset: 10 Swiss ball roll out with tricep press/10 sec stir the pot on Swiss ball (left then right)

Superset: 10 plank press ups/20 toe-touches

Evening Workout:
10 minutes of plank flows.

Wednesday -
I felt really good this morning so I headed to the RRC to get some hill repeats in. This was a solo workout as the other members were running long. So I got a 2M WU in (legs slightly heavy) and headed to one of my favorite hills in Rockwall. The hill is about a .25 mile in length and doesn't really plateau. With that said, today I planned for 8x1min hill sprints at hopefully 5K effort. It's really hard to run at your respective 5K effort on this hill (as your heart and O2 consumption will go through the roof) but in order to get stronger and faster...training like this is not suppose to be easy. Picture
As you can see from the pic, I was feeling pretty strong on the first  few repeats. Heck, I was going longer than 1min! The problem was I was never hitting what I believed to be my current 5K pace (6:00) and the longer then 1 min sprints eventually got the better of me that the strong feeling/effort was tamed by this hill. My breathing rhythm was off, my heart rate (HR) felt pretty high (well I thought it was), my legs were fatigued. Basically, I think my mind took over and that kind of pissed me off.

I'm not sure why it upsets me but when I see my max heart rate at 172bpm based on my effort in this run, I am not sure if my fitness is lacking or if it's actually I am just short changing my effort on this run. I need to compile all my data and see what makes sense.

Afternoon Workout:
Superset: 15sec jump-rope/15sec single leg jump-rope (left then right - 30sec total)/Crab Crawl 40ft/30reps Crab kick/Bear Crawl 40ft/Straight Arm, Straight leg Bear Crawl 40ft. Performed 2 sets.

SuperSet: 100 revolution Jump-Rope/2min stairmill (as fast as you can)/30reps BOSU side lunges/50 revolution jump-rope. 3 sets all for time.

SupertSet: 15reps Full Frontal Raise (hitting shoulders)/15reps Full Lateral Raise/50 revolution jump-rope. 3 sets all for time.

Superset: 12reps barbell curls/incline dumbbell curls with a twist (Perform 6 reps at the bottom twist for 5 secs and perform two more reps per arm)/incline bench reverse crunch. 3 sets, rest 1min between sets.

Supeset: 4x20 Ab Wheel/4x25 weight crunch.

Thursday -
Today, I felt surprisingly good. Legs were not too fatigued but nonetheless, I was glad I had an easy run on the schedule. Met with the RRC as they headed out for their Fartlek workout. I mentioned that I would follow the route but I'm running easy. Got in a solid easy 8 miler and felt great! Ran in Brooks Pure Cadence.

Afternoon Workout:
Superset: 30sec jump rope/agility ladder (dbl leg hops, single leg lateral hops and diagonal ladder shuffle)/30 sec jump rope. 3 sets

Superset: 30sec skiers/30sec toe BOSU touches/30sec BOSU side-to-side lunges/30sec Ali's. 3 sets

Superset: 30sec side-to-side huddle high knees/agility ladder (single leg hops and hop scotch)/15sec single leg jump rope (each, 30sec total). 3 sets

Superset: 100 (50 each side) Mountain Climbers w/BOSU/20xpush-ups/20xbicycle crunch/10xstraight leg lifts w/thrust/10xtoe-touches. 3 sets.

Friday -
I took today off because I decided I will be running a 5K tomorrow.

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Saturday -
Today, I ran a local 5K in Rockwall. I haven't ran a 5K since July 4th and that one was painful. So I really wanted to see where my fitness was at up to this point. My first goal was to hit 2 miles in 12:30 then see what I had at the end. If my first goal didn't pan out, I was going to use this race as a 3 mile tempo run since I have not been running a lot of tempos as of late.

Today was a beautiful day for a race! Fall was definitely in the air. A nice north wind, clear skies and temps hovering around 65 degrees. I ran to the race site (got in about 2 miles) and headed to the start after visiting with some  people. Met with Tiffany before the race and we both strategized what each of us planned on executing. At the start of the race, I shot off at a manageable pace and had another runner stay on my heels. At the first turn, we hit that "nice north wind" I couldn't believe  we were running into the wind, but...I sucked it up and hit mile 1 at 6:07. As we hit the turn around point, the north wind made my mouth really dry so I grabbed a cup of water which was on a slight hill. It slowed my pace down a bit but hit mile 2 at 6:24. Well I hit my first goal of 12:30...well 12:31 but not to shabby. The other runner was still on my heels which I was ok with because he really pulled me that last mile. Up to this point in my training all my track workouts have been up to 2 miles and I really haven't hit a strong tempo run in quite sometime.

Well it showed when we came up on 2.75 miles. My breathing fell out of rhythm and the runner heard it too. At that point he kicked in another gear and I hadn't fully recover yet. I lost the race at that point. I worked to try and catch him, but there was too much distance between me and now first place, mile 3 came in at 6:07. Nonetheless, I came in second and am happy to see that my fitness has improved since July. Hoping that it continues to improve as we get to Philly. Ran in Skechers GoSpeed.

Afternoon Workout:
Yard work :)

Sunday -
Met with RRC for a 15 miler. Nothing to fancy here, Nice easy run a pick up pace from 10-13 (7:16, 7:11, 6:44) then back to an easy pace (8:00) from 14-15. Ran in Inov-8 Road Extreme 178

So as I mentioned, it was another good week of training. I got a 5K race in and did particularly well. Looking at ramping up my HIIT sessions and including some tempo style workouts this coming week to find that next gear that I know is waiting to come out.

Kyle

Train Hard = Race Easy, Train Smart = Race Fast

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<![CDATA[Road to Philadelphia 8K and Half - Week 5]]>Mon, 16 Sep 2013 13:29:01 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/road-to-philadelphia-8k-and-half-week-5Picture
Well last week (read review here) I took the week off from XT and just focused on running. My body felt great by weeks end. Which re-enforces my attitude that a little pain goes a long way.

This week I get to sign up for Boston!!! I sit here thinking about how I ate, breathed, trained and slept to beat my qualifying time and get to Boston. It was "almost" all for not because of a freak injury and due to the weather we faced at the CIM marathon (where I and many of my Rockwall running group qualified), but I trusted my training and I was prepared to take on anything at that point. As far as sign up goes, I have to wait until Friday (09/13) to register since I came in 7mins under my required qualifying time of 3:10. If I am able to get in (Mon. 20min or faster sign up, Wed. 10mins or faster sign up and Fri. 5min or faster sign up) on Friday I am pretty positive that Boston will be my last road marathon. The next chapter of my running life will probably focus on the short road distances and trails.

So, let get to this weeks training:

Monday -
No running this morning.

Afternoon workout:
12mins - StairMaster, Superset Barbell curl/2-arm Dumbell (DB) tricep kickback (4x25 reps), 6mins - Jump Rope, Superset Lateral Raise/Military seated DB press (4x25 reps), 6min Jump Rope, Superset weighted crunches (4x25 reps)/Ab Wheel (4x15 reps).

Finished off with 15mins of abs/core.

Tuesday -
It is track day with Rockwall Running Club (RRC). Today we ran one of my favorite track outs...200m repeats! The key to this workout is to not over reach yourself. What this means is, you want to feel like your floating on the track, you're not over striding and your form is chest out/slight lean at hips and good ankle flexion. Anything else, you're just setting yourself up for the sidelines down the road. Today, I figured I would be around 40-41 secs/200m. Ran my first one off feel and used Coach Barrett of the RRC as a barometer. After a few more repeats, I was dialed in on my "effort" pace and focused on keeping myself in check. I did try a press a bit towards the end (ran a 35sec 200) and I felt that was too fast at this point of my training. So I dialed it back and finished with a solid workout. My times are below and I ran in my Skechers GoMeb.

Afternoon workout:
Started with 5x5 reps (has heavy as you can go) squats. Then followed with this wonderful HIIT workout.

5min - Stair Master/Stairmill, 1min - body weight (BW) squats (get thighs parallel to floor), 1min - crunches with knees up, 1min - pushups, 1min - hamstring curls on Swiss Ball, 1min - straight leg bicycle crunches (bent knee is fine too).  Perform each exercise one after another for 4 sets (rest 30sec - 1min between sets). If BW squats are too easy, spice it up with jump squats or plyo lunges (equal time on each leg). On hamstring curls, keep core tight and body elevated on extension. As you pull in, lift you hips higher and squeeze for a one count at the top. Again, keep core tight!

Wednesday -
Met with my RRC peeps for our mid-week long run at the Rockwall Running Center in hopes for a 10-12 miler (time permitting) of some easy running. Legs were a little sore form yesterday's w/o but I managed to run 11 miles with my peeps. Didn't realize it at first but, 11 miles was something of coincidence today as it was September 11. It took my friend Tiffany to point out that we ran 11 miles and two large hills that were parallel to one another. Even though the route was something "off the cuff",  it is humbling to get some perspective to an otherwise normal route. This route ended up meaning a little more, which in my book is pretty cool! Thanks for the perspective Tiff!

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Afternoon workout:
I call this the "Sandwich Workout"! The reason for the name is because you will perform two identical exercises in  between another or multiple. Kind of like two slices of bread, between a regular sandwich or a "Dagwood Sandwich"





Round 1:
10 pull-ups, 10 dips, 10 pushups, 100 mountain climbers, 10 pushups. Perform 4 rounds for time and try to improves every round.

Round 2:
25 toe-touches, 10 leg lifts with hip thrust, 50 large swimmer kicks (keep toes flexed and legs straight), 25 toe-touches, 100 jump rope. Perform 4 rounds for time and try to improves every round.

Round 3:
20yrd frog jumps (down and back), 20yd bear crawl (down and back), 20yrd single-leg hops (down and back) performed on each leg, 20yd frog jumps (down and back). Perform 4 rounds for time and try to improves every round.

I think I want one of those sandwiches now!

Thursday -
Today I met up with some of the RRC at the track again for some mile repeats. I am pretty sore this morning and wasn't sure what to expect form this workout. The plan was 3x1 mile repeats with 800m recovery.  I convinced myself that it was only 3 repeats so that helped a bit.

Picture
The repeats were a bit of a struggle as I could never really kick into my next gear. Tuesday and Wednesday's afternoon workouts are probably a big reason why I couldn't kick into gear but those w/o's are a necessity to keep me explosive and conditioned.

As you can see, my repeats were consistent and I did feel like I left it all on the track. So all-in-all, not a bad workout this morning.

No Afternoon workout:

Friday -
Today I some how slept in. I remember turning off my alarm (0350) then waking up to my mother in-law calling that she was at our front door (0620). Needless to say, this became a rest day.

I did register for Boston 2014 at 0900 CT. At 1500CT, I received confirmation that my application was accepted which means I will be heading to the 118th Boston Marathon! Can't wait!!!

Saturday -
Today I had a 10 mile workout planned which consisted of 4 miles of 1 min Fartlek w/ 1min jog. So I met up with the RRC and we headed out on our respective training runs. You could definitely feel Fall in the air. It was 75 and a nice cool breeze. Granted, it was still a bit sticky out but by the end of our run, the humidity had dropped which made for a nice day.

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So my warm-up lasted a little longer then planned because we were discussing A&M vs Bama football, Miley Cyrus "Wreaking Ball" video and just random things that I would imagine everyone discusses on their easy runs. After I realized my oversight, I took off on my 4 miles of Fartleks. Legs felt great through the whole w/o and even the breathing was manageable. Tried to maintain my speed on the inclines since I was only working for 1 min. Did get some sharp pains in my right shoulder which I will need to monitor but had a solid 4 mile workout.

Then I ran an easy 1 miler and finished of with some moderate pace running for my final 3 miles. The pace was controlled and I felt fine (at this point the humidity had dropped). I ended up running the final 3 miles in a cut-down fashion which wasn't planned but a pleasant surprise.

Afternoon workout:
100 push-ups, 100 toe-touches, 100 big swimmer kicks, 100 leg lifts with hip thrust, 100 ab-wheel.

Headed out to a wedding of one of my best friends. Great to see him find the woman of his dreams and one that makes him a better man. Congrats John and Lissette!

Sunday -
A missed opportunity for a morning run. The weather was almost perfect, nice breeze, a little humidity I was well rested but today, I wanted to go to church.  I miss several opportunities to go to mass with my family and for some reason I just needed to go.

Well I didn't have the most productive training week (totally my fault). Fall is in the air and I will make every opportunity not to miss another beautiful day to get my miles in. Yes, I did get some good quality training runs...but in order to succeed at distance running, you have to get the miles in. This obviously wasn't that week for quantity.

Kyle

Train Hard = Race Easy, Train Smart = Race Fast

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<![CDATA[Road to Philadelphia 8K and Half - Week 4]]>Mon, 09 Sep 2013 13:33:33 GMThttp://www.runhealthygetstronger.com/blog/road-to-philadelphia-8k-and-half-week-4This week, my plan was to take it easy from XT and simply let the body recover and just focus on running. Next week I'll head back to the gym and torture my body as much as possible.

Monday -
Well a new day and a new week to start off this Labor Day. I figured I would get in a semi long run (8-10 miles) since I did not get one in yesterday (read post here).  There was some storms in the area but I figured I could get in at least 8 if any storms popped up (it is Texas, wait 5mins and it can go from 99 degreess to 68).

I arrived at the Rockwall Running Center (RRC) to see if anybody was there. In all fairness, it was 0445 and no one was there. In fact, I was the first vehicle there! I checked the radar on my Yahoo Weather App (Best weather App around) and all was clear, so I headed out. When I hit my 3 mile split, lightning was becoming more frequent (this guy doesn't run in lightning...overly cautious) and the air quality just plummeted. So I headed on back on the same route.

** Side Note: Saw some suspicious people in some bushes and apparently I frightened them because I was coming back, I see them in the distance moving from one location to another. I approach the new location and a car is taking off. So who hides in the bushes at 0500? Hmmm.

Anyway, as I was nearing the RRC (about a 1/2 mile away) there was a bright flash that lite up the sky which followed with a nice rumble about "8 Mississippi" away. My run was going to be cut short to 6 miles. This was a good thing, because the sky's opened up and the rain and lightning followed. Ran in my Mizuno EVO Levitas (you can read my show review here).

No afternoon workout just focused on some foam rolling as my legs were extremely tight.

Tuesday -
Meet up with my RRC group for Tuesday Track! My quads were pretty knotted up, probably from my Sunday workout (can be seen on my previous post) and with today's workout (4x800m w/ 400m recovery) I wasn't sure how my times would be (would like to avg 3:00). After our 2 mile warm-up, I really wasn't feeling like I was capable of today's workout. I stretched the quads and hammies by doing some light drills and pick-ups. I told myself it's only 4 and hoped that a fast run will warm up the muscles. The first 800m was tough but controlled and the next three felt a little harder. I kept telling myself "one more" and focused on breathing and leg lift. I completed the workout with the following times (3:01, 2:58, 2:57, 2:56), pretty consistent.

No afternoon workout.

Wednesday -
Today was a nice recovery run with the group. My legs are feeling pretty good but still a little tight. Something is off so I have an appointment with the crew that helped me the first half of the year get back in alignment through Functional workouts and movements. Before I get to that, ran 8 with the group in my Inov8 Road-X-Treme 178
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My afternoon session would entail some PT and functional movements that have helped rid me of my IT band and Psoas issues. The guys at Synergy Athletic Performance have helped and educated me on ways to keep me pain free and optimize my athletic potential through functional strength training movements that although may seem simple, have challenged my core and imbalances in making me stronger then before.



We first started out with some foam rolling as we discussed what's going on with my legs. Then we went right into 5 mins of full body resets which consist of McKenzie Exercises for breathing, head turns and low back, lying full body turns (harder then it sounds), Bird Dogs, dead bugs and marching.

Then the work out itself was 5 sets of partial Turkish getups w/ 35lb kettle bell (kb) and hip thrust, 1min plank with one leg up, Turkish kick outs, walking lunge with one 35lb kb in one arm in one direction the other arm coming back, 5x pull-up with 30lb sandbags.

Thursday -
Legs feel pretty good, so was a little excited of today's run with the RRC. Today was an 8 mile run with a 15min warm-up and 4 miles of 30sec Fartleks at 5k pace with 1min recovery then cool-down. I know, funny name but it's a serious workout.

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Starting off, I was feeling pretty good especially once we came out from a hill. My legs felt light and ready for some work. Once we hit 15mins I still felt like I needed a little more time but knew that the pick-ups would warm me up quickly. The first few Fartleks we ran, I was feeling good and my pace showed it (refer to pic).

We often say that the workout itself doesn't begin until you last few repeats/reps/sets. If you're feeling the workout in your first few reps, you're either over-reaching (running out of your element) or physically not prepared for the workload. Today, I was feeling this workout in our last mile of Fartleks which I knew I was running under control and at a perfect pace. Once I realized I had been running at an ideal pace (even though I had no idea what pace I was actually running during the fartlek), I felt a sensation of accomplishment that made me just push more. This was a great feeling.

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The hardest part of this run was actually the cool-down where we are jogging back to the club. I could go into why slow running is beneficial but that's another thread or you can simply Google "Advantages of slow running" and get a plethora of info for your reading pleasure. So I will say that after a hard/fast workout your muscles suffer micro-tears(hence why you get sore after workouts) and slow running allows for more blood flow/oxygen to be fed to those damaged areas. In today's case it wasn't that we were not happy to just take it easy but when you go from a 30sec on, 1min off workout to a continuous slow jog...it becomes mind numbing.

No afternoon workout.

Friday -
Typically my RRC buds and I run hills on Friday. Today, it was up for discussion as to what we were going to do. After yesterday's workout, some of us (myself included) wasn't to sure if the legs could handle hill repeats so a flat route was suggested. That suggestion was quickly turned down and hills were still on top of all of our minds since last week it was discussed that we should run my infamous route in Rockwall that many people (who have ran it) shiver at the name. It's a nice 8 mile loop I created 2 years ago that contains switchbacks, hills and more hills. It has been said, that when heading out on this route if you hate hills, you will come back loving them because of the challenge and confidence it gives you. See, I am the coach and runner who loves to run hills so this route was named after me and it's called Hemmer Hills.

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As you can see from the pic, we hit several hills or what some people in mountainous ranges would call "nice inclines". I have used this route when coaching runners for the NYC Marathon, Boston Marathon, Houston Marathon and California International Marathon. I have obviously used this route myself but we limit the use of this route as it can blow you up if you are not careful. Form is of the essence when running hills and this one has a good blend of short and long "inclines".

So Barron, Gregg, Jim, Fernando, Carrie, Jodelle, Vanessa and I headed to Hemmer Hills and ended up having a fantastic run. The RRC has some of the best people in the area and I appreciate everything that this club is and stands for.

After we came out of Hemmer Hills, Carrie and Jodelle decided to play a "joke" on us. Little did they know, that since this RRC crew is a little off its rocker, playing a joke that we are going to run a hill repeat back-fired on them. The whole crew hit one more repeat for good measure (Thanks Carrie and Jodelle) and we headed back to the club. Ran in my Inov8 Road-X-Treme 178

No afternoon workout.

Saturday -
I took an unexpected day off which I welcomed with open arms and relaxed legs.

Sunday -
Met with Luke's Locker Road Kill Runs group out at Northshore Trail in Flower Mound, Tx. This trail is home of the Rockledge Rumble held in early November. Today, my plan was to just run for 2 1/2 hrs on the trails and break up the monotony of running on the roads. The Luke's people brought out demo shoes to try on which where the Nike Terra Kiger, still a little narrow for my taste, soft feel, great upper and 4mm drop. I ran 9 mile in the shoe and it responded well in the early stages of my run but towards the end, I developed some sharp pain in the bottom of my right foot. Luckily, it was at the end of my 9 mile (1:30 time on feet) then I switched to the Skechers GoBionic Trail shoe. This shoe disappeared on my feet. Soft feel, wide toebox, luggy sole, and 4mm drop with the insole (zero drop without). I ran for another hour (got in 5 miles) and my feet were simply happy. This is a great trail shoe!

No afternoon workout. Football time!

So the week went really, really well. I listened to my body and pushed it just enough to want more. I probably should have ran on Saturday but then I may not have had such a good run on the trails. Nonetheless, recovery is a good thing no matter if you take a day off or simply run some easy miles. It's your body's way of getting stronger...you just have to be smart about which direction you choose.

Kyle

Train Hard = Race Easy, Train Smart = Race Fast

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