Can you complete/compete at the 140.6 distance w/ only 10 hrs of training per week?

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

How to Run and...

The other day as I was playing with my 5 year old son and he called me out. We were just finishing up a high quality 'rough up session' (I recently broke the frame of our bed - no joke - per roughing up) and were dancing wildly to the theme song of "Crazy Town". Grace, our 18 month old, took part in the excitment and bounced her head just as wildly against the sofa cushions while holding a 'criss cross applesauce'. All of this is a sight to be seen for sure.

Sorry, I am talking 'kid code' and may have lost the attention of a few riders in the process.

Luke says to me, "Come on Daddy, run like you mean it!". I was left to wonder where he heard that one from ;). Its awesome how spongelike kids are. Its even more awesome to see how influential you can be to a little guy or girl. It appears that I am drilling it into Luke that if you are going to do something do it well and put your all into it. Its a true joy to do life with Luke.

Are you running like you mean it? When given the opportunity to run do you run with purpose? Do you put yourself out there and challenge your current self imposed ceiling? What is holding you back from 'running like you mean it'?

As a slight tangent I must digress to Luke on two 12 inch wheels. Luke knows to 'own it' and to 'take it' when ascending a hill. To see him come out of the saddle and attack a hill is simply priceless. Too cool.

The video below captures my son riding his bike for the second time. You can't help but love the enthusiasm and focus.

I urge you today to be passionate and to train like you mean it. There is no other way to train and to do life.

Live life like you mean it,

Saturday, January 21, 2012

New Thresholds Found

Lactate threshold, anaerobic threshold, aerobic threshold, etc. Most of us have heard of these thresholds before. They are thrown around by many, but each exercise phsyiologist will have a different spin on what they actually mean. For this post I will shift our attention toward the ever changing mental threshold or pain threshold.

Today as I observed each of my athletes at TRX Strength Phase 2 I could see each of them dealing with pain and discomfort. Some wore it on their face more then others. Some groaned, some turned a slight green and looked poised to fill a garbage can, while others had to simply tap out.

What I stressed to my people today was that each of us must face discomfort and pain and learn from it. To take it another step further I believe one needs to become good friends with pain that is brought on from training. Let me clarify here. I am not saying that if you just broke your knee or femur while competing or training you should suck it up and work through it. What I am referring to specifically is that threshold of discomfort that makes quitting so much more appealing and inviting. I am referring to that threshold where your mind starts to talk...

"...lets stop at 3 reps vs. push for 6..."

"...your legs really feel heavy because of the pace your pushing...slow down!..."

"...I like to be comfortable and this is starting to bother me..."

This is not an exhaustive list of conversations your mind has. A part of you wants to fight, but the other side wants to be submissive to the discomfort.

[Side note: take the ear buds out of your ears so you can deal with the pain friends and not get lost in music. When racing you'll need to face these voices head on.]

You see, we can increase our lactate threshold with sound training methods. We can also nudge our VO2Max upward to some extent (not as much as your lactate threshold due to genetic ceilings). However, one thing that I think we overlook is working on our pain threshold.

I think all of us can work on fighting through some discomfort. I also think some are born to fight better then others. For me, I actually seek out the discomfort and find joy in dealing with heavy legs that become non-responsive, a breathing rate that literally burns your airway, and intensity that allows you to hear your pulse resonating within your ear canal. Can anyone relate with that last one? I like that place. Not everyone is like that, however.

I would encourage you to find that place where the pain seems unbearable. It is at that exact moment that I'd recommend you take a deep breath, blow out the pain, and face it head on. Learn to work through the discomfort one rep at a time, one minute at a time, one workout at a time, and one race at a time.

We can all get tougher. I challenge you to find a new pain threshold in the coming weeks, months, and year. By doing so you will begin to find the athlete that is screaming to come out of you.

Deep breath, face it, own it,

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


"I contstantly remind myself that resting takes confidence. Anyone can train like a mad man but to embrace rest and to allow all the hard training to come out takes mental strength" - Ryan Hall

When I read this quote this morning it brought me back to the days when I used to train like a mad man. I laugh now, but back then I was convinced that I was indestructable. There were periods of time where I'd train 21+ days straight with no rest day. The only thing that could stop me then was a broken leg. This was when I was in my early 20s.

Since then I have come to know my body and to listen to it. Instead of 'pushing through' and training with swollen glands I have opted to rest. When green mucus is rolling out of my nose I opt to rest. When my resting pulse is 15 beats higher then normal I see this as red flag worthy of my attention. When I feel medial heel pain presenting itself I foam roll the anterior and posterior tibialis (and surrounding muscle groups) to ward of plantar fasciitis. You get the idea.

In the months to come I hope to present a very new and promising training tool that I am currently 'test driving'. I believe it is a tool that could revolutionize how we train AND recover. I have been testing this tool for over 2 weeks and have found it to be very helpful in validating the stress/recovery phenomenon.

My hope for each of you that is reading this today is simple. You will take your recovery days as seriously as your traning days.

Train smart, listen to your body, and reach your potential,
Coach L