Looking at running form and technique as part of my coaching course made me realise that I, like many runners who start as adults, haven’t done anything on my form or my technique!
So I’m taking the rest of the year as a little bit of a break from racing and running long distances to concentrate on becoming a better runner. Which will then leave me in better shape to work on some time and distance goals for 2017.
That means having shorter runs, incorporating drills into my warm up routine and doing strength work!
To that end I have started the 8 week workout programme from Quick Strength for Runners by Jeff Horowitz.
On Monday and Sunday this week I did workouts 1 and 2. I found them quite hard going even though the reps were low for each exercise. The leg raises were particularly hard as my hamstrings are quite tight and I can’t keep my legs straight up in the air. So I’ll also be continuing with my weekly yoga sessions from next week to make sure I’m still getting some flexibility work in.
I only ran twice this week. The first run was on Wednesday and was just a short 20 minute run (plus some time for warm up and cool down). I had a bit of a sore throat and wasn’t sure if it was going to be okay to run but the run was really good. It did take me a while get warm again once I got back home though so I think 20 minutes was my limit.
My other run was the ‘graduation run’ for the folk on the Start to Run course at my club. At the end of each course we go to a local parkrun to do a 5k run together as a group. I think this is a really good way to end the course as parkruns are low key and not as pressured as a race and you get the benefit of the very friendly and supportive parkrun volunteers.
As leaders we always tell the group that it is their parkrun and they should run it as they feel fit. If they need walking breaks they should take them. And as leaders and helpers we always make sure that there is someone at the back so nobody feels that they have been left behind.
This group wanted to be paced round the course to the pace they had done their last mid-week run, about 7 minutes per km. So that’s what we did. We chatted all around the course, distracted them when they needed distracting and encouraged them when they needed a little encouragement. Almost everyone ran the full 5k, with only one member taking a very short walking break (which to be honest was a very fast walk!), and everyone was pleased to finish in under 36 minutes. A really great time for a 5km, especially as they had only started running 7 weeks earlier.
I really love the Start to Run course. It’s fantastic to see people achieve something in such a short space of time.
I’ll be back to leading my Bridging Group from next week, which will now include many of the Start to Runners. I wonder how long it’ll be before they start thinking about their next event!
How has your week been? Do you incorporate any strength or drills into your weekly runs and workouts?