Saturday, October 23, 2010

VIP rules

Well it seems that fall is now arriving to the Pacific Northwest. The leaves are turning, it's crisp in the morning, and the first of many storms has arrived.
The question that I seem to get daily is "Do your group runs continue all year?"
Of course, the answer is "yes.. why not?"
Running year round in the PNW is quite easy vs. other parts of the country.
Dressing for the weather is quite simple: never wear cotton! Always choose synthetic or wool clothing. These have wicking and warmth abilities once they get wet (sweat or rain).
Here is a basic rule to remember: I call it the VIP rule
Ventilation, Insulation and Protection.
Ventilation - is the way to ventilate the heat / sweat from your body.
Insulation - keeps your body warm.
Protection - protects your body from the elements, sun, wind, rain , sleet, and snow.

There are a few products out there that do an amazing job with this.
Craft has Zero Extreme and Zero tops. Zero Extreme is geared for temps near 55 to 35 degrees, Zero is temps 40 to 25 degrees. Sounds like the PNW in the winter!

In running, we generate heat, our wicking shirt is our insulation. If you walk you may want to add another layer to trap that heat, or wear a thicker shirt. Smartwool makes a lightweight top that works wonderful.

Protecting yourself from the wind and rain is key. While most Gore-tex jackets (waterproof) are too warm, they do not ventilate fast enough. Look for jackets with body venting as your arms swing, or other types of venting. There are a few jackets that have a great wind/ water proof front and highly breathable fabric on the back. Sugoi makes the Firewall 220

Sometimes 1 shirt will fit all 3 requirements for the VIP rule

Keep this idea in mind when about to go outside for a run:
1. What is the temp? dress for 5- 20 degrees warmer.
2. Is it windy? This steals your heat without protection.
3. Is it wet? Wetness robs you of warmth.

Now get out there and run.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Race Day

Fall races are here! This is the time of year when most start to doubt their training plans, training partners, and get worried about their upcoming races. This is the time to see how well you have prepared yourself to take on the challenges you signed up for!

If you are behind on your training, make sure your "race" turns into a long run. If you have spent the time to follow a plan be sure to align everything to allow yourself to run towards your goal and achieve it!

Many of you have spent the last 2- 8 months training to run a marathon, half marathon, 10k or 5k. It is through all you training runs that you learn about how your body reacts to different situations. You learn which gels, drinks or water you like, or more importantly, don't like. You have spent many hours either by yourelf or with training partners for moral support, to try new ideas, just to keep you motivated.

During the race here are a few tips to keep you motivated:
1. Stick to the plan - (now is not the time to try something new)
2. Try to run a negative split, if possible. (Start slow and speed up vs. too fast and crash)
3. Hydration and nutrition play HUGE roles in performance, don't forget!
4. Walk breaks may actually allow you to finish faster!
5. Smile for the cameras!

Look forward to seeing many smiling faces on race day.