Learn to run faster
Running is a great sport but demands a great deal of dedication and focus to improve.
It doesn’t have to be complex but when you are new to the sport.
You really don’t know where to start. How many miles should I run?
How fast should I do this workout at?
Should you run more or less miles?
These are more than likely some of the questions you may have asked yourself.
Runners who have become competitive within the sport continue to ask the very same questions beginners ask.
I don’t know where you currently stand in your training regiment.
You could be an already seasoned runner who has runs many races of various lengths.
This could be the very first post you have read about in your quest to become a distance runner.
I know when I first started running track races in 1995 I really had no idea where to start.
I didn’t know how to run a 1600 meter race on the track.
It simply takes time, trial and error in your training to find out what works best for you.
There are countless blogs and websites online about running.
You could go anywhere on the net and find something written about long distance running. I believe experience is FAR more important.
This is something I cannot hide from.
I have run seriously for nearly 23 years and have much to share but my concern isn’t how high of website rank I have from google.
It is the visitors of this site.
I started rundreamachieve because I know there are thousands, if not millions, of people who have dealt with disappointment in their athletic pursuits and can relate to what I write.
I am thankful for those of you have subscribed to the rundreamachieve newsletter.
If you are new and would like to receive bi-monthly help and hints I will send out outside of the blog itself, I encourage you to join.
You are obviously highly motivated people and I appreciate your willingness to allow me to share my experience with you.
Well I hope there is something you can find within my posts that will help you, in some way, to make you a better distance runner.
I have always tried to read uplifting material so many times you will see me suggesting books.
I will be posting videos that I hope to make you think, possibly a few that will make you laugh.
Our days are already filled with enough stress and busyness.
A few laughs can go a long way.
My aim is to help you.
If it isn’t, than I hope you will be as honest with me as I will be with you, and tell me what you would like to see on the site.
I invite you to leave comments.
Is there something you are dealing with in your training that you can’t figure out? An injury?
Let’s talk about injuries.
This is a subject I will write extensively about.
I have had three knee surgeries and all revolved around training. I had two orthoscopic surgeries on my left knee and one on my right knee.
I am preaching to the choir here as I know many of you have dealt with something that has caused a road block in your training.
What I hope to accomplish with regular posting is to make an impact in your running.
I found a passion when I was 15 years old and that passion has never left and here I am 37 years young.
I hope with time and writing personal thoughts you will eventually know that this is someone who cares and has been where I am.
I had patellar tendinitis.
Have you ever seen those bands that are placed just below the knee on runners?
I suffered from that condition pretty much my entire senior year in high school all through my freshman year in college.
If you have an injury let’s discuss methods of getting you back on your feet or if it something that is just nagging you than let’s talk about getting you through it.
Motivation Is The Key
To have people come here and read what I have been through means a lot.
More than likely, as the statistics say, visitors will ‘skim’ over posts but I hope this will not be the case here.
You must take action with your goal because it is not going to run to you, you have to run to it and in this case, literally.
I can help you get better and I can write about ways and hows of training but it is up to you to get out the door.
I hope some of the information I send out will assist you with that.
You obviously have a passion and want to get better or you would not have stopped here or read this far into the post.
Your highly motivated so what I want to do below is write a few things that have helped me stay focused over the years.
Weather conditions, time constraints, job responsibilities all throw a wrench in our training schedules.
I watched the video below countless times in the past and still review it to get over it.
It is a very short clip of the most successful high school cross-country coach in history, Joe Newton.
His teams have won many high school national championships.
He has his high school athletes running 80-100 miles a week in high school.
This may not be your goal.
It certainly wasn’t my goal to run that much in high school and never came close to that amount of mileage that young.
Coach Newton, like the other coach’s that I have had the pleasure of knowing and have worked with, is a leader.
The type of leader you want to learn from.
What you need to do in your own training is to associate with success.
For me, that not only comes from the people I work with and have known but from reading books, watching videos…anything that will get you going when you don’t want to.
Failure is an expected milestone on the path to success. Failing does not mean you can never succeed, it just means you don’t succeed every time. When you practice anticipating and accepting failure without fear or judgment, you leave the door open for success. One way to deal with a mistake is to simply block it from your mind. In most cases one error isn’t a deal breaker, so blocking out the error and immediately refocusing attention on the next performance can keep you from blowing one slip-up out of proportion. – Mark Fenske
Don’t let a failure stop you from achieving what you want.
Think this is just another statement made that you hear constantly?
Well that may be true.
I have heard it to0.
I can surely tell you had I quit after running a 2.40 at the 2007 Grandmas Marathon (after a 1.10 first half) or starting the 2007 Chicago Marathon in 83 hitting the half way point in 1.11 and walking and jogging the last 14 miles to hobble home in 2.51.55, I would have never run 2.19 for the marathon.
It goes without saying that your motivation to succeed is the game changer for you dropping minutes off your old personal best, period.
The single greatest lesson from past ultra-achievers is not how easily things came to them, but how irrepressible and resilient they were. You have to want it, want it so bad you will never give up, so bad that you are ready to sacrifice time, money, sleep, friendships, even your reputation (people may-probably will-come to think of you as odd). You will have to adopt a particular lifestyle of ambition, not just for a few weeks or months but for years and years and years. Uncommon achievement requires an uncommon level of personal motivation and a massive amount of faith. – David Shenk
I know the above quote is true. You don’t have to have a goal of being an elite athlete. Is your goal is to run 10 miles in a week? Awesome.
If your goal is to find out what you truly can do, what your body can take, whether that is dropping weight, running a huge personal best or participating in your very first marathon than you have to take advice from experienced professionals seriously.
I know I do.
I have run just under 2.20 for the marathon.
I want to know what it takes to run 2.15, 2.10, and I continue to read everything I can get my eyes on about it.
What are those guys doing? If you have as your goal to run the 5K in 18.00.
What are they doing that you are not?
I hope to help you to that goal if that is, in fact, where you are at.
Shenk goes on to say:
Just as practitioners of judo turn an opponent’s attacking energy and momentum intro weakness, those with high ambition must constantly turn failure to opportunity.
Don’t let a disappointment override what you will can achieve. I ran marathon times of 2.40 and 2.51 before I ran 2.19.
Stay motivated regardless where you are at in your training regiment. If you are in your first week..stay motivated. Best shape of your life? No reason to let up, stay as committed as you have been and don’t let up.’
Expect failures along the way and remember you will learn far more from these than the successes. Trust me, this is true. I ran 1.07.06 for the half-marathon at the 2007 Rock and Roll Philadelphia Half-Marathon, a huge personal best at the time. I was ready to qualify for the 2008 US Olympic Trials (at least I thought) and earn the needed 2.22.00 time to do it.
What happened? I ran 2.51.55 the next month at the 2007 Chicago Marathon on a very hot day and failed miserably with my fitness. When did I reach my goal? 28 days AFTER the 2008 US Olympic Marathon Trials were held in December and broke the “A” standard time of 2.20.00 instead.
Embrace failure cause you never know what you will achieve if you keep your motivation revved up. Do I have your attention yet?
Thanks for taking the time to read this post.
Please feel free to leave a comment. I hope this was helpful.
Please send me your feedback as to what areas of training you are would like written about.
Run faster and more focused starting today.