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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Shin Splints!!!

Over the past 2 weeks I have done 2 of my first 5k's. I've been training injury free for over six weeks. I have taken it slow and made sure I didn't over doing it with speed or distance to prevent injury. However, competing in a race is completely different in the final stretch... it feels great to stretch out and pass as many people as you can before you cross the finish line! Unfortunately for my shins that is what I did in both races. And that is what has caused the pain in my shins...

Now, I need to recover for a week or so. I am trying to read about shin splints and how to recover from the mild case I think I have and how to prevent it from happening in the future. I have found some good sites that explain it all pretty well like... and reasons warm up and stretching is so important at

I read about trying to run without landing on your heel or "heel striking" and landing more on your fore foot. I started out training with this in mind and am pretty sure it has helped me prevent injury so far. But in my sprint to the finish, I'm sure all went out the window. I haven't trained going that fast and I didn't even think about my "form". Here is a video that talks about barefoot running, but it shows the difference between landing on your heel and landing on your fore foot.

I am also curious about Chi running. It is running tilted forward a little and letting your legs do less work... or something like that...

Lastly I hear a lot about compression socks. I'm not real sure what benefit this could have. I thought those were more about circulation... but I have seen people recommend them for shin splints several times. I may give them a try along with icing and stretching and see how it goes.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Training Archive | Complete Running Network

Training Archive | Complete Running Network

Here is a full page of training and tips that I will be reading through

100 Beginner Running Tips | Complete Running Network

100 Beginner Running Tips | Complete Running Network

I just read the first list of tips and it looks like plenty more info for beginners... check it out.

First 5K

Well, my first 5K was this past Saturday. I didn't know what to expect but it went smoothly. I started out with the crowd at a faster pace than usual... which I have been told is easy to do and a not so smart thing to do. I got a little winded and slowed down to pace. Felt good by the end and was able to sprint to the finish and pass a few people along the way. I was able to set a personal record on the pace and distance and even surpass my goal time.

I look forward to completing the 5k 101 program and being able to run the whole 3 miles without walking. I must say that I am impressed with the program so far. It has definitely built up my endurance. Once completed I want to start working on speed. I'm not sure where to start with speed training... I will try to find a good program for that as well.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Running for Beginners

When starting out I realized real quick that I needed a running plan. Having never run before I thought you just went out there and started running and if you could go fast it would be even better. Not only can you get injured quickly, you also get discouraged by looking at the 10th of a mile you just ran and think "There is no way..."

I found a plan that has been working really well. It is called 5k 101 Running Mate. It will take you from 0 to running a 5k (3.1 miles) in 8 weeks (or so). I downloaded it as a podcast on my iphone but also found the website has the streaming audio so you listen from a computer if you have it by the treadmill or just to get familiar with the format. The site is
I was able to create a workout on my Run Keeper App with the training times for each week and listen to my own music at the same time. Here is the way it breaks down if you just want to use a stopwatch.

Each of these are to be done 3 days a week. Start and end each session with a 5 minute warm up walk and 5 minute cool down walk. If you find that you can't complete, just slow down your run to a pace that is easy enough to complete. It is not about distance or speed right now, it is about training your legs and lungs to last. If you try a new week and you can't hang in there just do the previous week and try to move up the next week.

Week 1: 2 minute jog, 3 minute walk... repeat 4 more times
Week 2: 2 min 30sec jog, 2 min 30sec walk... repeat 4 more times
Week 3: 3 min jog, 2 min walk... repeat 5 more times
Week 4: 4 min jog, 1 min walk... repeat 5 more times
Week 4-2 If needed: 6 min jog, 2 min walk... repeat 2 more times
Week 5: 8 min jog, 2 min walk... repeat 2 more times
Week 6: 12 min jog, 3 min walk... repeat 2 more time
Week 7: 12 min jog, 3 min walk... repeat 3 more times
Week 7-2 If needed: 20 min jog, 5 min walk... repeat 1 more time (rest if needed 30sec or so during 20)
Week 8: 30 min jog without rest

I did repeat week 4 and then moved on to week 5 the next week. We will see how it goes from here...

I run with music while I am listening to this training most of the time... But I have gotten out with no schedule or training to follow and just enjoyed getting out and jogging and walking at a comfortable pace. I surprised myself how long I could jog after doing this for a few weeks when I wasn't counting the seconds until the interval was over. Give it a try...

Sunday, March 7, 2010

DailyMileTraining Stats

I have been on DailyMile for a few weeks now. Other than having great support from people that are training and running daily... It also makes it very easy to track your progress and stats along the way. This shows my weekly mileage since I started on Feb 1st. It is so simple to use... From this page I can see my fastest time, farthest distance, how many miles I have done total, how many calories burned...
It also allows you to track equipment. Say you have 3 pairs of shoes that you like to alternate... you can keep track of mileage on each so you know when to retire a pair.

I have been on a training plan to take me from nothing to 5k in 8 weeks. This has been really nice to see where I started and where I am today. I am on week 5 and can really tell a difference. Although I am still not quite where I want to be to run the 5k's the next 2 weekends in a row... but I have to start somewhere...

So much to take advantage of and you can meet great people that are willing to give you tips and help push you along the way. Sign up and find me...

Friday, March 5, 2010

New Stuff

I got some running clothes today... The Injinji socks will take a couple of times to get used to. I'm sure when I start longer runs they will be nice to help keep blisters away. I tried out my new Brooks Launch shoes and they are really nice! Even if my wife does say they are ugly...

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Getting Started

Running has always been of interest to me... I just never had a goal in mind or anything to push me. So, I have told just about everyone I know what I am going to do... run a 1/2 marathon on December 4th in Memphis.

I really don't know if I can post much on here... I really never have had much to say. I figure training for a marathon is as good as anything to write about... So here goes...

Some friends at church are getting a team together to train for the half in Memphis and I have gotten several of my good friends to start running including my brother. I look forward to running with them from time to time... We don't all live that close together...

Not knowing where to begin (I couldn't run a quater mile) I started reading blogs and finding people that motivate me. 
First, I looked on itunes for running podcasts.  I came across "Two Gomers Run a Half Marathon".  These guys started just like me with no experience... I listened to the whole first season in a few days time.  Then I caught up with this season "Two Gomers Run a Marathon"... some of the best motivation so far... if you haven't listened to these guys you need to. You'll laugh a lot and learn a lot from their trial and error.... like don't eat Hot Pockets before your run...  Their website is

Next I found a guy on twitter @reallynotarunnr with a blog "I am really not a runner".  His story made me want to run for a reason other than for myself. He runs for a charity benefitting Childrens Hospital because one of his friends lost a daughter. He has some great stories... Find his blog at (I have found several other good blogs to read... Check out the ones I follow in my profile.)

And finally I found one of the greatest sites to help motivate and keep accountable...
It's like facebook for runners. You can post your runs or ask questions and there are tons of people training and getting in shape that will encourage you along the way.

If you have an iphone, I recommend getting Runkeeper.  I can track my runs with the GPS and it makes it so much easier to see what I am doing...

Well there's a few things that have helped me get started. Go buy some shoes and start running with me...