Running with a Purpose
Running is a simple sport, right? Put on some shorts, shoes, and a shirt and head out the door; put one foot in front of the other and soon you’ll be tearing up the race course…umm, don’t we all wish. If you’ve ever done any running before, you know that this is utter nonsense. Trying to run faster can be complicated, tricky, and downright frustrating at times.
However, there is one common theme at the heart of running faster, no matter your talent level or training background…run with a purpose. Now, this doesn’t mean having a goal time or running to honor a friend (which I’ll add are good things to have, and an admirable reason to run). Instead, I am referring to having a purpose, or more specifically, something you hope to get out of each training session.
I find many runners, beginners and experts alike, filling their running schedules with “junk miles”, recovery days that are too hard, and speed sessions that don’t target their weaknesses or the specific demands of their goal race.
It’s important to remember that whenever you go out for a run – whether it be an easy day, steady run, tempo run, or speed session – it’s vital that you ask yourself the question, “what is the purpose of this workout?” before you head out the door. If you, or your coach, can’t answer that question, then I suggest you stop for a second and think about the reason for your run. Once you’ve figured out why you’re going to run the prescribed distance and pace, then you can go out and execute the purpose of that session.
This means that easy days should be easy, tempo runs should be on pace, and interval sessions should be at the right effort and recovery. Doing so will maximize the effectiveness of each training session and help keep you healthy and running faster.
The next few blog posts are going to be guided to the specifics of a few of the workouts I assign my runners, why I assign them, and some of the common issues I see when I start working with people.
So, be on the lookout for upcoming updates and a lot of great information!