Posts

Is Running Bad for Your Health?

Risks to Running? Should Runners Proceed with Caution?

Did you see the headlines last week?

Could Strenuous Jogging Do More Harm Than Good?

Running Too Hard? Light Jogging Linked with Living Longer.

Want to know my first thought when I read those headlines? It’s a good thing I’m a fricking runner and not a jogger!

I'm Not a Jogger!

Image via MarbleheadMarathoner.com

Want to know my second thought? What a bunch of bullshit.

Screw the Headlines, What Do the Articles Say?

Read more

Pat Mulder Went From Fat & Lazy to Just Lazy–His Words Not Mine!


Pat Mulder has completely changed his life in the past few years, and running has played a big role in that change. At an estimated 330 lbs in April of 2012, he decided to get on the treadmill and attempt to simply walk. After 20 minutes, he was finished and felt like he was going to “throw up”.

But it was a start.

Pat Mulder, Floppy Hat Photos

Pat and His Trusty Running Partner

 

Fast forward to today, and he’s in the 160-170 lb range and is currently on a run streak of over a year. Read more

Did You Witness History in the Making?

Last night was a first for me. I put on my first ever live webinar. I spent an hour or so, chatting with runners and answering questions in a very relaxed and laid back environment.

DizRuns.com Presents...-3

Was it perfect? Hell no!

Was it a success? Absolutely! Read more

The Benefits of Strength Training for Runners

Unknown-10

Strength training is something that many recreational runners, and even a lot of semi-serious runners, tend to omit from their training regimens.

The prevailing feeling of many runners is that to get faster, one simply needs to run farther and run faster.

And the prevailing feeling is wrong.

The Many Benefits of Strength Training

In most sports, the notion that lifting weights and getting stronger will improve performance is widely accepted. Football players spend hours in the weight room, as do hockey players, basketball players, and even baseball players.

So why do runners think we wouldn’t see a benefit from regular resistance training?

Here are just a few of the many benefits of strength training that runners can see if they commit to regularly doing resistance training.

  • Stay Healthy–Believe it or not, endurance runners have one of the highest rates of injury of any athletes. This may sound crazy at first, but it actually makes a lot of sense. Running requires that you repeat the same motion over and over and over again, sometimes for hours without a chance to recover. Any motion that is that repetitive in nature can cause muscle imbalances and overuse injuries. But regularly performing strength training exercises, runners are able to limit muscle imbalances and strengthen the muscles that are used in running, which helps to prevent them from breaking down over time.
  • Finish Stronger–Nothing is more frustrating for a runner than fading fast down the stretch (believe me!). Regular strength training helps to improve muscle endurance, so hopefully the fading will be minimized. For those of us crazies that run marathons or longer, this is especially important. Those last few miles are where you need that additional strength to make it through the finish line the most.
  • Improved Running Form–This is an addendum to the previous points, but as you fatigue your form breaks down. By working on your strength and improving muscular endurance, you’ll be able to maintain good form for a longer period of time which will help you finish stronger and stay healthy. To be clear, strength training won’t improve poor running form but it will help keep your form from breaking down over the course of a longer race.
  • Increased Metabolism–Strength training, without getting too technical, is a great metabolism booster because the effects of the exercise are felt for up to 36 hours after the workout is completed. Whereas running burns a lot of calories during activity, unless you’re really killing yourself in your workouts, running won’t keep burning a lot of calories once you finish your run. Strength training works exactly the opposite–not many calories burned during exercise but a continued burn for hours after exercise is complete. (If you want more info on the reasons this happens, shoot me a message and I’ll go into specifics.)

For most of us, we run to improve our overall health and push ourselves to new limits in terms of speed or distance.

Both of these goals are best achieved by including regular strength training to your routine.

If you’re not sure what kind of exercises are best for runners, stick around. I’ll be giving out some great ideas in the next post.

Do You Regularly Do Any Strength Training? What Does Your Routine Look Like?

 

PS–I’m working on a suggested exercise guide that I’ll be giving away to my tribe members, so if you want that just enter your best email address and I’ll get it sent out to you soon. (If you’re already in the tribe, stay patient. The guide is coming!)


2014 Walt Disney World Marathon

This past weekend I ran my 3rd Disney Marathon, which was my 5th full marathon overall.

There is a lot to love about runDisney events, but after running a handful of non-runDisney events (halves and fulls) I’ve come to learn that runDisney definitely leaves a few things to be desired as well.

The Good Stuff

  • The Bling–Disney events tend to feature some pretty nice finishers medals. This year was no different in my book. Big. Gawdy. Heavy. Love it.

20140114-164405.jpg

  • Characters on the Course–If you’re running in a Disney race, you’re going to see lots of characters out there to take pictures with, if you’re so inclined. Not only are Mickey and Minnie out there, but there are also a lot of characters out and about that aren’t regularly seen in the parks. This was my 8th runDisney event, and this was the first time I actually stopped to take a bunch of pictures. Great decision.

20140114-164416.jpg

  • Lots of Company–This is a double edged sword, because having lots of fellow runners means that the course can be a little crowded sometimes, and not all runners are familiar with proper runner etiquette. But after running a race in October where I was pretty much alone for 18 of the 26 miles, it was nice having some company from start to finish.

The Not-So-Good

  • Corral Placement is a Joke–On paper, putting runners in order by their projected finish time, and sending them out in waves is a good idea. runDisney fails when it comes to putting this idea into practice. Nothing against walkers or run/walkers, but they shouldn’t be in one of the first couple of corrals in a race this size. When they stop, and usually it’s more than one person at a time, it creates an instant road block. And since the course is crowded virtually the entire way, it can be a hassle to get around them. I don’t know how some people got into the corrals they did.
  • Lack of Guest Relations/Customer Service–For a company that is so focused on making guests happy, Disney dropped the ball when it comes to runner relations at the race expo. I have a friend that ran the race, her first full, and when she registered she didn’t have a qualifying time to give her a good corral placement. She was hoping for a sub-4:00 race, and ran a half in November in 1:50 and change, which should have placed her in one of the better corrals. runDisney, however, decided that November was too late in the year for a change in her corral placement to be changed on her bib, and for the first time that I’m aware of, they wouldn’t permit her to change her corral at the expo even though she had a verifiable qualifying time. She still managed to run 4:01 while weaving through, literally, 1000’s of slower runners that were able to get corral placements that my friend should have.
  • Post Race Food–I’m not going to blast runDisney over the price of the race, which is high, but I understand where the money goes. One place the money doesn’t go, however, is to the post race spread. I’ve been to races that cost $40-50 that have huge buffets, hot food, lots of drinks (read, free beer), and entertainment for all runners. Disney gives you, what amounts to, a poor-mans boxed lunch. We got a few bagged treats (corn chips, almond puffs, crasins), a banana, and a powerade. Spare no expense. (To be fair, all food items were gluten-free, which isn’t often the case concerning post-race foods, so I do really appreciate that thought from the race organizers.)

All in All

When it’s all said and done, I had a blast running this race.

Stopping for pictures with the characters was a first for me, and it really made all the difference. If you’re trying to run a race for a fast time, and don’t want to stop for pictures, you might want to try another option. But if you’re looking for a fun race to run, the Disney Marathon is a pretty good choice.

I doubt I’ll make the Disney full a regular event on my race schedule, even though I’ve run 3 of the last 4, but I’m leaning toward doing it again next year. I’m thinking about doing the Goofy Challenge next year, but that might be my last Disney full for awhile.

Anyone want to run it with me?

Have You Ever Run a runDisney Event? Did You Run in the Marathon Weekend This Year? What Were Your Thoughts of the Event?