Tag Archives: running

Consistency And Fitting It All In : Prana Running Podcast

I was privileged to be interviewed on the new Prana Running Podcast. We cover consistency and fitting it all in.

Delving into fitting in marathon and ultramarathon training around shift work, children’s sporting commitments and everything else that comes along with life.

We cover running, nutrition, when things go wrong on race day and plenty more.

You may find some nuggets of wisdom and tips for runners at every stage of their journey.

If you’re a runner of any level I recommend you check out the other episodes. Mel takes a different approach than the most other running podcasts. She has a way of extracting usable tips and information we all can use to improve our running and health.

Running Goals: Macro Versus Micro

Are your running goals defined by times and race distances? Or do you have other criteria?

Falling short of a goal forces us to re-evaluate.

Time and distance goals are used to achieve my bigger goals in running. They are tools to chase moments where I truly feel alive. Goals can be differentiated into macro versus micro.

Micro Goals

Micro goals are simple and measurable. Examples are:

  • Run your first 5km
  • Run a sub 40 minute 10km
  • Complete 100km ultra marathon
  • Cover 80km in a training week
  • Run every day for 30 days

These goals give your something objective to aim for. Help guide your training and racing. Provide structure in what you do.

Does it matter if you hit these goals?

Reality of Running Goals

Most people don’t really care how fast your race is. That’s a good thing.

Racing 10km in 39:58 versus 40:03 may feel like a big deal to yourself. It usually doesn’t rate that much to others. Those who care about you tend to care more about what the goal means to you. Not about the specifics of the goal.

Will achieving the goal change your life?

It’s the process that can change your life. Not the goal. We can bring up exceptions to this. Such as having to run a certain to qualify for another race or gain team selection. This isn’t the case for most runners.

But don’t use this to down play the importance of setting goals.

What Are Macro Goals?

Macro goals are your ‘why

Your goal doesn’t have to be massively profound. It can be as simple as you enjoy chasing fast times in a race. Other examples can include:

  • You want to feel healthier
  • You enjoy the act of running
  • Running clears your mind
  • It just feels right
  • You chase the feeling of achievement

You can get more in depth and detailed. The important concept is this is truly why we run.

Understanding your macro goal means it’s easier to make choices. If your macro goal is about gaining a qualification time then you can choose to sacrifice some other aspects of your lifestyle. If your goal is to be healthy for your family, then you can be comfortable that running 10km is fine versus 15km. It comes back to what you really want.

My Own Macro Running Goals

I chase a certain feeling. That feeling is the moment when I feel truly alive.

Everything in my life is enhanced when I feel like this.

This feeling comes from moments. These moments occur when:

  • the noise is stripped away
  • the task feels impossible
  • time feels distorted
  • I am broken down to my core

Running provides me the opportunity to achieve this. It feels innately natural for me to use running to chase this feeling. Something special happens here. It is in this space where there is an interplay between success and failure.

This is why I run.

Not A Runner

Not a runner?

Lining Up

Thirteen years old and lining up for the school cross country. I pushed my shoe into the muddy ground. Rarely did we have the freedom to get covered in dirt at school. It was a brief thought, replaced with the worry of the race about to start.

I was not a runner.

The previous years had proven to me I was slow. This had been reinforced by the disinterest shown by my primary school physical education teacher.

It would be easier to join those who loudly didn’t care. Cut the course and walk. That way it wouldn’t matter how I went. No one else was concerned where I placed or how fast I went.

Yet I moved closer towards the front of the line up. Not in the first line. That was for the runners.

Running

Cold air had made it hard to breath at the start of the race. Now it was almost soothing. I wanted more, but couldn’t breathe in that much. A film of sweat obscured my view ahead. It was hard to make out the runners in front of me. They had started as a pack, but were now spread out in pairs or single file.

Thoughts of being slow dissipated. I wasn’t able to make my legs go faster. This didn’t seem to be a problem as I wasn’t slowing down. Some of the runners ahead of me looked like they couldn’t run anymore. A few started walking.

I kept running.

Amongst The Runners

Suddenly I was amongst the runners. This is where I stayed through to the finish. Exact placing and time didn’t matter. Mud obscured the finish line. I think I ran a little further than necessary.

Now I could suck in enough cold air. It felt good. Physically tired and sore, but not exhausted. My mind bounced around ideas and realisations. The race was more than fun. Without knowing it at the time I was experiencing the euphoria of the runners high.

To many it’s just a school cross country race. Most kids have run these. For me it set the seed that grew into a running future. I didn’t know it at the time, but over the years I discovered I was made for running.

I continued to stay with the runners over the years. It was and is an amazing community.

I kept running.

If You Run

Starting out thinking I was not a runner was misguided. If you run, then you are a runner.

For a little more on this running journey check out Starting My Running Journey.

Keep running.

Redefine Your Easy: Not Just Slow Running

The body is inherently lazy. It is clever in finding ways to have you take the easy way out. When training towards big goals we need to get past this. Check your base point of training and redefine your easy.

Defining Easy

Easy is a relevant concept. I’ve written about the power of easy runs before. Those concepts still hold true. There are different ways to make runs easy. Easy may be faster than we think.

Most easy runs will occur while recovering from a harder run. Either a long run or a set of intervals. So it would be normal to expect to feel sore or heavy in the legs. Perceived exertion may be significantly higher than the intensity truly is.

After running for many years it pays to check your habits every so often. I had fallen into the habit of making my easy runs so easy they almost no longer resembled running. Instead they had become better described as a shuffle. Too far removed from the technique I was aiming for.

Is this really a problem?

It is when it pulls you away from an efficient running technique.

This leads to a challenge.

After running for many years it pays to check your habits every so often. I had fallen into the habit of making my easy runs so easy they almost no longer resembled running. Instead they had become better described as a shuffle. Too far removed from the technique I was aiming for.

How do you keep the run easy while raising the intensity to ensure better technique?

The answer is to remember intensity isn’t the only variable to determine the difficulty of a run. Keeping an easy run relatively short can allow you to up the intensity a little bit more.

My Approach

Most of my easy runs were between 8-15km. In these I kept the intensity very low. While the movement at a low intensity aided I the recovery from harder runs, it was taking away from my technique.

Now I focus on technique during my easy runs. Ensuring proper knee lift, good leg extension and push off all the way through the toes. This raises the heart and breathing rates more. I am accepting this as long as I’m not reaching my anaerobic threshold and accumulating lactic acid. To keep the run still within the easy range I am dropping the distance down to between 5-10km. The shorter distance stops the run from taking away from the next of training.

The Results

The faster running and more complete technique is a little more difficult. They highlight where I am sore from previous hard training. Here the body and brain attempt to kick in the lazy habits. More concentration is now needed to override the inherent laziness.

On the plus side I am finding I feel fresher going into the harder runs. Faster running is feeling a bit more natural and dare I say it… easier.

How do you approach your easy runs?

Let me know


Best Way To Start A Running Program

Welcome to a new year. New goals. New running program. Over the last couple of decades I’ve tried different approaches to kick starting my next training. In this post I share what I find to be my best way to start a running program.

The approach isn’t about exact mileage, paces or mix of training of sessions. Those all vary depending on upcoming goals and current fitness and health. Instead I look for an approach that sets me up hit my training consistently and hard. To get me beyond the initial burst of motivation.

Two principles make up this approach:

  1. Refresh the mind
  2. Prepare the body
Welcome to a new year. New goals. New running program. Over the last couple of decades I’ve tried different approaches to kick starting my next training. In this post I share what I find to be my best way to start a running program.

Refresh The Mind

This is not taking a break. Instead I am chasing the enjoyment. Looking to lose myself in the process of running rather than focussing on times. It is a form of moving meditation.

There are 2 aspects to refreshing my mind.

All runs are based on feel. Some structure still exists in the form of intervals or repeats. On those runs I don’t worry about any exact times. Instead I run based on feel, looking to achieve the feeling rather than any number. The times are only a by product. If they turn out faster or slower than expected then it’s irrelevant.

If I feel like changing the planned run then I will. It really doesn’t matter as long as I’m still training and enjoying it. Every so often this approach results in some runs much faster than they feel.

Supporting the more relaxed approach I aim to run in places I enjoy. This is almost always on the best trails around me. This year I did this by making the most of the spectacular trails and beach around Anglesea.

Prepare The Body

This is mixture between hard training and allowing recovery. A wide variety of running paces, terrain and intensity is important.

I will train hard and fast in between different versions of easy. I’ll state again I don’t care about exact paces, but am looking to have the running feel great.

One aspect of training I avoid during this process are hard, long runs that grind me down and require a few days to recover from. Those types of runs tend to be counterproductive. They rob me of the snap and spring I look for. Any over load usually comes from pushing the speed up.

I’ll expect to be a bit sore from some training for a day or 2, but shouldn’t require anything beyond that. There is room to throw in a race, but nothing beyond 12km.

Most mornings I woke just before the sun. Running through the amazing backdrop of the sunrise across the sea and beach. The loose training structure went like this:

How I Started My Year Running

Camping with family and friends put me amongst some of the best landscapes along the coast. A mixture of hills, single track, bush and beaches made for the perfect playground.

Living in a tent without setting an alarm allowed my body to follow it’s natural circadian rhythm. This is a luxury to me. Life as a shift worker makes this a rare opportunity.

Most mornings I woke just before the sun. Running through the amazing backdrop of the sunrise across the sea and beach. The loose training structure went like this:

  • VO2 Intervals 4x3min with 3min easy jog
  • Easy 10km
  • Easy 7km
  • Race: Tim Gates Classic 10km
  • Regeneration 4km
  • Easy 6km
  • Easy 10km
  • Hill Repeats 4x3min with jog back down
  • Easy 10km
  • Easy 6km

In writing it looks like a typical running program. The distances, paces and even the structure of each run isn’t very important. It is the approach that makes the difference.

I find the best way to start a running program is to take a bit of time to refresh the mind and prepare the body. How do you like to start a new running program?

Christmas Training Block: Running In The Silly Season

Struggling to train during the silly season? I find it harder. A mixture of increased demands on time, renovations, social stuff, kids not at school and all the miscellaneous extras Christmas brings makes it harder to fit it in running. Here’s my plans for the Christmas training block.

 

The Christmas training block takes me over 4 weeks from a week before Christmas through to the end of the second week of January. It is a time for friends, family, food, drink, mess, cleaning, packing, camping, holidays, food, drink, friends and family.

 

How does running fit?

Running is used to enhance my life. It helps make what is great even better. It helps me deal better with the not so great parts too. Running makes it easier to relax. I feel better generally and it is easier to be present in all moments when I get in regular running.

 

On the flip side I have the tendency to go too far. Running can be a great escape. But I have taken it too far in the past. I still chase big goals in running. Finding the balance between all aspects is often a challenge.

 

To make sure I get my running done I need to focus on my non-running commitments. It sounds counterintuitive. Procrastinating on the other areas in life means they will take more time. Which means they encroach on the running.

 

There’s no such thing as multitasking only task-switching. For me the most efficient way to get something done is to focus only on that. I’ll use this as good practice to improve my mindfulness skills.

 

Working hard on the necessities will give me more freedom for the fun stuff. Family, friends and running. I’ll block time to getting the tasks completed. This will create both the physical and mental freedom to start the following day with a training session.

 

Timeframes on the runs will be tight. Most runs will be an hour or less. The key sessions maybe a little longer plus a weekly long run of up to about 2 hours. Compared to the last few years these timeframes are short. Yet I know I will get more out of them.

 

Get More Out Of A Run

Being intentional is becoming a cliche, but it applies here. Knowing what I want to get out of a run and what it takes to achieve that is of paramount importance. By defining these two elements simplifies the run. It doesn’t make it easy.

 

All that is left is to go out and do what I need to achieve the run goal.

 

Boundaries To Stay Accountable

This creates boundaries that help keep the mind on track. No room to wander. No space to slack off for some extra recovery between repeats. No chance you get back those moments of dropping the pace.

 

Challenging is the fact the planned paces are faster than I typically have run over the last couple of years. The last 4 weeks have proven I can run those paces. Now I need to push them out and hold them for longer, more often and consistently. That is the hard part.

 

Running 7 Days A Week

Switching to a 7 day week for this training cycle has me feel somewhat like a normal person. Of course I’ll never quite get there. 

The base plan for a training week will be:

 

  • VO2 Intervals 4-5 x 3min with 3min recovery
  • Regeneration / Easy 40-60min
  • Long Run 20-23km
  • Regeneration / Easy 40-60min
  • Easy Run 40-60min
  • Anaerobic Threshold Intervals 4 x 2-3km with 5min recovery
  • Regeneration 30-50min

 

Total kilometres I don’t care about. They are only a byproduct of getting in the required work.

 

Skipping the occasional regeneration is definitely not a problem if it’s for a good reason. Christmas Day will be a good reason. That day is for the kids.

Struggling to train during the silly season? I find it harder. A mixture of increased demands on time, renovations, social stuff, kids not at school and all the miscellaneous extras Christmas brings makes it harder to fit it in running. Here's my plans for the Christmas training block.  The Christmas training block takes me over 4 weeks from a week before Christmas through to the end of the second week of January. It is a time for friends, family, food, drink, mess, cleaning, packing, camping, holidays, food, drink, friends and family.

Why Do You Run?: Training Log

During the week I was asked why I run. It was good timing for the question. We can all benefit from being asked this. Take a moment and ask yourself why do you run?

 

Training Week

 

Before I share my answer, let’s take a look at the training week.

 

  • 40min form work
  • off
  • off
  • off
  • Long Run 2:15 (21km)
  • Regeneration 40min
  • Easy 70min

Total 45km

 

Last week was a flat week of running. I really wasn’t feeling it. My body didn’t feel right. There was a lack of power in my legs. My heart rates were way out compared to usual. Often shooting excessively high for a low workload. Something was up.

 

I took a few days off running to let my body balance back out. This seemed to help a lot. I have my suspicions as to the problem. The answer is worth a post all it’s own. There’s a few things to work on before I do write that up.

 

Why Do You Run?

 

Thank you to Matt from Fractel Performance Caps for asking me why I run at the right time.

 

View this post on Instagram

[WhyWeRunWednesday] with Jason Montfort ( @jason_monty ). 🏃🏽‍♂️🏃🏽‍♂️🏃🏽‍♂️ Jason is a man full of running wisdom and a chaser of moments. With the @rapidascent Surf Coast Century event coming up, he is stringing together some solid training weeks and documenting his journey through his online blog runningalive.com. ✖️ Here is what Jason had to say when we asked him ‘why’ you run… 👉 “How I started: I wasn’t fast when I was a kid. But I enjoyed running. Gradually I discovered I could just keep going and cover distances others didn’t try. Out of high school in 1996 I started entering fun runs. That led to the Melbourne Marathon in 1997. From there it has been years of running and triathlons and more running. Why I run: There is a feeling I chase. I could be satisfied with everything I get out of the rest of my life. I could be. Knowing there is more, means I’m not. So I chase moments. Those moments where all the noise is stripped away. Those moments where it feels impossible. Those moments where time is distorted. Those moments where I am broken down to my core. This is when I feel absolutely alive. These moments push everything out of my head and I am left with being present only in the moment. It is in this interplay between failure and achievement that something happens. Everything is enhanced. I usually discover I can get more out of myself than I believed. In short, I feel alive.”🙏🏼 It’s great to be reminded how raw the simplicity of running is, and the moments it creates whether you are out there solo or with a group. Thanks again for sharing Jason and all the best with what’s to come! #whywerun #fractelrunning

A post shared by FRACTEL™ (@fractelrunning) on

 

It was clear I wasn’t fast when I was a kid. In primary school races were short and I was a tail ender. I wanted to be quick, but it didn’t take too much enjoyment away. I still loved sport, even if I thought I wasn’t very good at it. I enjoyed running. Gradually I discovered I could just keep going and cover distances others didn’t try. This was the start of my running story.

 

Running added to my life. It provided a way to really feel alive.

 

There is a feeling I chase.

 

I chase moments.

 

Those moments where all the noise is stripped away.
Those moments where it feels impossible.
Those moments where time is distorted.
Those moments where I am broken down to my core.
This is when I feel absolutely alive.

 

These moments push everything out of my head and I am left with being present only in the moment. It is in this interplay between failure and achievement that something happens. Everything is enhanced. I usually discover I can get more out of myself than I believed. In short, I feel alive.

 

 

Your Turn

 

I’d love to hear why you run. Let me know in the comments.

How Not To Miss A Day Of Running: 6 Steps To Running Consistency

  1. Consistency rules in running. But life gets in the way. We skip a session here and there. That eats away at our consistency. How can we not miss a day of running?

 

Anyone can put together a good week of training. Most will put together 2 weeks. The numbers drop off at a full month. How many can back it up month after month?

 

Life, family, work, injury, health and my own head have all gotten in the way of consistent training over the years. Since returning from injury I’ve turned that around. This is what has worked for me.

 

  1. Know Your Goals
  2. Know Your Weaknesses
  3. You Can’t Do Everything
  4. Keep The Plan Simple
  5. Use Friction
  6. Switch On Switch Off

 

Life, family, work, injury, health and my own head have all gotten in the way of consistent training over the years. Since returning from injury I've turned that around. This is what has worked for me. Know Your Goals Know Your Weaknesses You Can't Do Everything Keep The Plan Simple Use Friction Switch On Switch Off

 

1. Know Your Goals

 

Be clear on your goals. The doubts will set in. When they do it really helps to know what you are striving for.

 

I chase goals that register something deep in me. Understanding what I want out of running helps with this. Further thoughts on this are in Run Alive.

 

Putting the goals in writing as clear, simple and measurable statements make them easy to reference. It leaves no doubt as to why I am training. Having these goal statements in a place I see often makes it easier to grind out a session when I otherwise don’t want to do it. Check out 2018 Running Goals.

 

2. Know Your Weakness

 

When are we at our weakest? When am I most likely to skip training? What’s my go to justification for slacking off?

 

Training at the end of the day is often a fail point for me. After a day of work, family stuff and assorted other items I find it too easy to justify skipping my run. By avoiding scheduling training in the evening I give this weakness less opportunity.

 

When my weekend falls on a weekday I have the advantage of training during the day. After dropping the kids off at school I run straight away. Trying to fit something else in before the run usually causes me to run out of time to fit in the training. Again I make a point of structuring my day to avoid this weakness.

 

3. You Can’t Do Everything

 

It is impossible to include every type of run in a training week. Trying to cover all bases just doesn’t work. Understanding there is a big cross over of training effects helps. Knowing what to prioritise is important.

 

Comes back to knowing your goals. Focus on what will lead you there. Then allow enough space and recovery to perform those runs well. Anything else is extra. Be careful with the extra, it usually gets in the way.

 

My main focus is aiming to run fast enough at the Wings For Life World Run to make it an ultra marathon. Along the way there I will be racing a 10km cross country. Using the 10km as a stepping stone towards the ultra marathon keeps me heading in the right direction. However, I have to accept it may not be my fastest 10km. Altering my training to achieve my fastest at the shorter distance will take me away from my big goal.

 

 

4. Keep The Plan Simple

 

Writing every detail in a long training plan sets it up to fail. I write out a basic overview which lists 2 to 3 key points for each block of training. As I come up to each block I right out about 4 weeks at a time. Each run is listed as a headline rather than a detailed description.

Headline: Long 40km

Description: Start very easy, making an effort hold back the pace over the first 3km. Then hold 5:35/km for the remainder of the run. Accept I will likely have to push the intensity heavily in the final 5km just to maintain pace. When running uphill focus on being relaxed but ensuring good form, don’t worry about pace. Use the assistance of gravity to bring back some of the time on the downhill.

 

The difference allows for the ebb and flow that occurs in training.

 

Check out Training Plan Overview 2018: 7 Steps To Setup Your Running for an example of how I keep the plan simple.

 

5. Use Friction

 

Make it easy to do what you want. Make it difficult to do the things you shouldn’t.

 

The more steps there is to do something the less likely we are to do it. I use this principle to get in my training before an early start at work. When the alarm goes off it be would easy to hit the snooze button and go back to sleep for a while. This is where I throw in some friction. Using my phone for the alarm I disable the snooze function. I place the phone a bit out of reach so I have to sit up to turn it off. There is enough in the way to make it harder for me to go back to sleep. My clothes and training gear are all set out from the night before. As a matter of habit I just put it on before my brain has had a chance to think.

 

Make it easy to develop those habits that get you training. Habits beat motivation.

 

6. Switch On Switch Off

 

Be on task. I have the urge to keep going over my training statistics and explore my training looking for the fine details that may help me get faster. Doing this over and over is a very inefficient way to spend my time. It also doesn’t lead to much improvement beyond just getting the basics right.

 

When training I get the most out of a session if I focus completely on it. Being free of distractions. It isn’t an easy skill to master, but it is a skill we can develop with practice. On a run I am only running. My concentration is on what I need to do now. Of course random other thoughts float into my head. They try to pull my attention away down another track. Being able to pull mind back on task works wonders.

 

This is a concept to apply to other areas of life. Essentially it is the act of mindfulness. I should place my attention into what I need to do now. That may be as simple as paying attention to what my kids are saying to me. It may be my work or getting chores done at home.

 

Being able to switch on and switch off allows me to get more out of the other areas of my life. As result it reduces the loose ends. This makes it easier not be distracted when it is time to train.

 

 

Last Word

 

It isn’t easy to back it up day after day. It is something I’ve rarely been able to achieve. That is part of the journey. Trying to make the hard a bit easier. Running consistency does get rewarded with results.


6 Steps To Running Consistency

Starting My Running Story

We all start somewhere. Why do we start running? My running story started back in primary school.

 

The Early Years

 

It was clear I wasn’t fast when I was a kid. In primary school races were short and I was a tail ender. I wanted to be quick, but it didn’t take too much enjoyment away. I still loved sport, even if I thought I wasn’t very good at it.

 

At 12 years old I had my first hint there was something in running for me. I did the school cross country. I didn’t win, but 2 points stuck out:

  1. I really enjoyed the run
  2. I didn’t feel I could run faster, but  felt like I could run again

Over the next few years I didn’t do anything with running beyond the yearly cross country in high school. Each time the above two points were reinforced. Because of this I went on a few extra runs up and around the local park. Then my knee hurt.

 

A doctor and podiatrist later had me in some orthotics and a suggestion to not run for a while. That I took up and played table tennis instead.

 

Running Calls Me

 

At the end of high school I rediscovered running. At first it was just a means to add some fitness around my table tennis training. Running soon took over. Albert Park Lake was next to where we trained and the different squads would run a lap. Somehow I joined the different squads for their runs. Each run was about 5km, and I would do 2 to 4 in a day once or twice a week. It took others to point out it was a lot of running.

 

Around this time my Dad asked me, “You like running and maps don’t you?” A few minutes later I found myself up the road in my first orienteering race. I got lost.

 

A few more orienteering races. I didn’t get lost as much. Why not try a road race? The Victorian Road Runners offered a 10km race at Westerfolds Park. It seemed like the distance I should run for some reason. So I did.

 

It hurt. I struggled. I blew up. I crossed the finish line hurting. It was absolutely fantastic. Wanting more, the next obvious step was to run a marathon.

 

Melbourne Marathon

 

It  was 1996 and I was toying with the idea of running a marathon. I went down to watch the Melbourne Marathon. My sister and I set up spot at about the 33km mark on the course. It was astounding to see how most runners were hurting and struggling through this section. It was the point where many hit the so-called wall. They are also far enough from the finish they doubt if they can make it. There was something in all this suffering that sung to me. I had to have a go.

 

My first marathon was to be the Melbourne Marathon in 1997. That gave me a year to build up. With a strong fear of failure I felt I needed the full year. For some reason I plucked sub-3 hours out as my goal. Over that year I ran, ran some more, read as much as I could on running, got injured, ran more and then some more. It was a big learning curve. In the final 3 months I took a program from Runner’s World magazine and followed it pretty closely.

 

The race was amazing. I crossed the finish in 3:18:27. Outside the sub-3 hour goal, but it was best I could get out of myself on the day. It felt like the hardest thing I could ever do, and I loved it.

 

 

Ironman Triathlon

 

While preparing for the marathon I had a bit of injury time out. Trying to keep up some fitness I took to swimming and cycling while I healed. That had me explore the world of triathlon. I got hold of the book Scott Tinley’s Winning Guide To Sports Endurance: How To Maximize Speed, Strength & Stamina. It has some timeless advice and still worth a read today.

Pick up a copy at Amazon by clicking on the book…(affiliate link)

 

The more I read, the more I wanted to race triathlon, but it just seemed like a sport other people did .

In 1997, after the marathon I watched the coverage of the Hawaii Ironman Triathlon. The footage of aussie Chris Legh staggering and collapsing just before the finish was mesmerising.

 

 

Running Became My Lifestyle

 

This was the launch pad to years of running and triathlon. I joined the Jones Cycles Triathlon Club. Raced marathons, Ironman, triathlon, rogaines, orienteering and many different endurance events. I changed my direction at university and studied human movement. Became a coach and worked different jobs related to sport.

 

My whole life was sport related, and I loved it. Yet I wanted more. But that’s another story.

 

How did your running story start?

Do You Run Everyday?

Every runner gets asked, do you run everyday?

 

For some the answer is yes. For most of us it is no.

 

To some degree I aim to run everyday. Looking back through my training logs I definitely haven’t achieved it. Would I be a better runner if I did?

 

 

Streakers

 

It can be an amazing achievement to run for a year or longer without missing a single day. For some it is a goal unto itself. For others it is a means to an end.

 

I’ve been impressed with the efforts of Steve Dinneen. His days off have led to some amazing results.

 

 

 

Of course there is Ron Hill. Longest Running Streak Ends At 52 Years, 39 Days

 

A Day Off

 

On the flip side some have achieved sensational results by incorporating a day off running. Paul Radcliffe was known to have a day off running every 8 days.

The day off gives the body a chance to adapt and repair itself from all the hard days of running.

 

If you take a day off running every week, it is 52 days without running every year. Will you benefit from taking this time off? Will more running be better? I think the answer is very individual. It probably even changes according to where you are in your own fitness.

 

trail run

 

What Gets In The Way?

 

There are the typical excuses. We are all stretched with competing priorities. If you really want something you will make it a priority. It sounds simple, but so many people struggle to make that jump from wanting to doing. It may seem like we have to put running ahead of family and work. I don’t believe that’s the case. Instead we need to look at what goes around our priorities. Do you watch television? How much time do you spend scrolling through social media? Do you plan your food and shopping ahead of time? There are many ways to create more time to do what you want to do.

 

My main excuse is sleep. Being a shift worker it is easy for me to throw out I need to get my sleep in. The excuse is easily accepted by others. To do my job safely, I cannot be fatigued.  Inadvertently it has become my default excuse.

 

Turn it around. Sleep isn’t the problem. We all need good sleep. It is what I do around my shifts that gets in the way of sleep that is the problem. Get important things in your life done without delay. It will lead to improvement in your running. It is something I need to work on.

 

Will I aim to run everyday?

 

The short answer is no. The longer version is, I will aim to run almost very day. Putting a caveat that if I do take a day off it has to be for a significant reason. Not just because I’m not feeling it today.

 

Do you run everyday?