I view running as a cycle and it should ebb and flow. If you’re not realizing this yet, hopefully you can take this in and absorb it that as a runner you can’t be at peak fitness all year. Ideally you would be and it would be nice, but your fitness should ebb and flow.
You should have peaks of like really super fit and then you have to come down a little bit. Ideally, the trendline for that would look like this where you’re getting fitter over time. What you don’t want to see is you run too much, you get really fit, then you crash and burn because you’re injured and your line looks like this rather than a nice gradual build and fitness. But I want to show you the system that I use to help people train smarter and I’m going to pull back the curtain a little bit and show you a little bit more.
This can all be found on the RunSmart website once you log in. But let me show you this. See if I can figure this out. We log into the site, our members get access to this. I’m going to show you particularly what they get access to. We have this little page here where they can come in and download a training guide. I’m going to show you this training guide and there’s some more information here, but this is essentially your best race ever.
How do you get there? And we have 5K, 10k, half marathon, full marathon guides. I’m just going to show you the half marathon guide. I want to show you the cycle of smart running so that you guys can just imagine this. Truthfully, I’ll go to this in a second, this just happened in our member’s Facebook group that someone didn’t do well on a race that they wanted and they’re asking, “How long should I wait to get to that next race?” And they would, “I end up at racing a couple of weeks,” and this is going to really shed some light on that because this is really important for this aspect.
But if you’re really looking to get results in your running, this is a good example of Mike who, he has a two minute and 30 second PR post in here, but little does this say Mike was actually a four hour and 40 minute marathoner. And over the course of two years just smart training with us, he went down to sub 340. Everyone doesn’t get no an hour plus PR, but Mike is a great example of training smarter over time, so if you can take these principles, implement them, I really do think you guys can get a lot better in your running.
Let me show you this again, this is available on our member site, but a success path for a half marathon, the roadmap to your best race ever. And I just want to go to the second page. I think this thing is eight pages long as you can see. And we just talk about the different stages of these, but these are the general stages I look at. If you think about this as a runner, you should flow through this. And a lot of people, I talked about this at the beginning of the month, get back in shape.
Let’s go. I’m gonna go through these stages individually. So hang in there and just let me walk you through these because if you can understand these stages, you’re going to really benefit from your running in to be a lifelong runner. Someone who’s the person in the group who seems to never be hurt and this is how you do this. There was a time and if you’re watching this, chances are you’re over 40 because that’s who I talk to. That’s my audience. There’s a time where you may have been able to run to get in shape, and I see my patients come in all the time like this and they start the new year, they start a training plan.
They know the quickest way to get in shape is to run. Go ahead and throw me some likes if you think this is true or you want this to be true and it may be actually true that if you run you and get in shape the fastest. But here’s the thing, older bodies don’t tend to like the pounding that is associated with that. In my training guide here. Let’s go back to it. The first stage is getting back in shape. Let me see if I can just blow this, oh I can’t do it right now. I’ll ruin it, but get back in shape is this first stage.
So we actually do is we give you some action steps to get back in shape. And really this stage is about getting your strength up, getting fit, and I can tell you right out of the gate spinning is one of the best ways to get fit but not trash your body. If you’re a runner who’s looking to get back in shape, don’t think about it as, “I’m going to start running to get back in shape as quick as possible.” I really recommend that you get on a bike and do low load cross training, the strength training to get there.
I done think of, okay, so maybe you’re already in shape. Maybe you’re just looking to start a plan. I talk about this with my runway. This is this next stage, building a base. So maybe you’re running a little bit and you say … And I’ve been guilty of this in the past and I know a lot of people maybe are who are watching this. You say, “Okay, I’m going to just start training for this race, but I’ve been kinda running, not running, half fascinates and this building the base stage is super important.
You go from getting fit, maybe you’re already fit. Now, I want to build my base, is just getting your running underneath you and building up your tolerance to impact. And this is super important for older runners. So as you run, not only do you get … And I think you guys can all appreciate this … you don’t get just stronger like your running muscles, but your joints learn to tolerate impact more.
The cycle of running, if you have a lot of time off, you want to get back in shape, then you want to start building your base, is consistent running, easy running, no speed workouts, no racing until you build that up. And then in this guide I actually lay out how do you do that, but that’s for our members. If you want to take a look at that, go ahead and click on the link I put in here. But let’s see, so we went from get back in shape, build a base, I’m ready to train.
This is for runners. You might be not be able to see this, but this is for runners who have chosen or plan on choosing a goal race. You’ll build a training plan to match your goals. That’s essentially this, so if anyone has been watching before, build a new plan. We have this tool where you can actually build out your full half marathon, full marathon and 5k, 10k plan, and really just customize a race, a plan for yourself.
I’m giving you all these tools. I’m not going to do this again because I’ve been doing it already, but this is included in that. So I’m ready to train that’s making sure you have the right training plan that is really good for you. And I’ve talked about this at nauseum for the last two months. It’s not about week over week speed workouts, it’s not about a lot of junk miles. In fact, I actually encourage a lot of you to bring those junk miles down, run a little bit easier and add strengthen. Three to four mile junk-run can be way off set and a much more benefit if you actually just go in and strength train instead.
And there’s many different ways actually, if you haven’t watched these yet, if you go to my Facebook page for RunSmart, go to the videos section. You can see I actually gave some great exercises for you guys to try and then there’s actually full exercises on our site as well that you get access to for $1 for two weeks if you want to try those out. If we look through this, we’ve gotten back in shape, we’re building our base, you’re ready to train and you’re training to succeed.
This is at the point that you’re actually in your training plan, you’re going through it. What are the things about thinking about making sure you’re adding your strength training, hitting certain goals around that, and I think people tend to do pretty well here. And let me go to this recover like a champ stage. I am a stickler for recovery. Now, there’s two camps here.
There’s a camp that says I’m looking to run to finish and I like to maybe run a marathon every month or every couple months, I’m in it for the social aspect and then there’s a camp of I’m in this because I want to do better and I want to PR and that’s my mindset and this was the runner who is in our Facebook group who just ran the Miami marathon and was disappointed in her time and she wants to go run Fort Lauderdale a couple of months, maybe two months later or a month later. A huge disaster. If you’re looking to do better and to do significantly better.
I’m not a big advocate for people who do like revenge races. Like, “Oh, I really bombed my marathon. I need to go do another one to make up for it,” because what ends up happening is the first marathon you bombed, chances are it torched your legs and crushed you, so you don’t need to necessarily go out and try to redeem yourself. Let yourself recover. You chalk it up as a loss and you just move on.
In the recover like a champ stage, I’m going to show you that again. The recover like a champ stage right down in here is all about letting your legs recover. I have actually a half marathon. Let’s see, recover like a champ. There’s a half and a full marathon plan in there of how to recover, how much time to take off, when to start adding, speed work, what kind of stretches to be doing and so on. Now, what can happen here is you can go from recover like a champ to I’m ready to train again, so this can actually go up, but then we have this final stage which is get fit between races.
Let’s say you’re a runner who just finished your goal race, you recovered properly, but you don’t really have a race to go to next and what do you do and you want to stay fit, you want to stay lean, whatever. Maybe you just want to burn off beer or food calories or wine, whatever it might be. Staying fit between races is a really important part of the cycle. Now here’s the thing, is if you can stay fit between races and I’m not saying high mileage, but you can just keep your body engaged with impact so that when you go out and run, you feel fresh and your joints remember what running is and you don’t just like bottom out, and I’ve been guilty of this myself. I peak on a race, I’m exhausted. I finish my race and I shut it down for a little bit.
What happens is when I go back to running, it gets a little more difficult and as you get older it will get more difficult. And I know I’m probably a lot younger than a lot of people watching this, but I completely appreciate that as a physical therapist for the last 10 years in seeing this happen quite a bit. In between races, if you’re looking to continue to train, continue to run, I really recommend you stay fit, but you just bring your mileage down. A great rule of thumb is my 60% rule. If you train at 50 miles a week and you want to stay fit, I would recommend taking a 60% of that at 30 miles a week and just maintaining that and doing it, and you can run some races in there and do what you need to do.
This whole guide really is where I see so many runners. If you can just follow this ebb and flow, you’ll see a lot of continuous improvement in your running, fewer injuries in your running because you’re not gonna be spiking up and down. You’re going to be adding the strength training, you’re gonna be training smarter. Hopefully either you’re using this or a program similar that gives you great training device and training structure, but it all can be done and it’s not super complicated.
So hopefully this helps, but if you’re looking for a little more help, I put a link above which for just a dollar, you get access to this guide for 5K, 10k, half marathon, full marathon. Strength workouts, training plans, run from instruction in our awesome Facebook group of 800 plus runners strong to help you navigate this world. And I’m in there every day answering questions.
If you’re interested in that, start your trial by clicking here.