I’m about half way through the “Run Your First Marathon” book (I talked about it a few posts ago). It has some really helpful tips about marathon training – from a training program to mental motivators and nutrition. The author of the book is a 9-time winner of the NYC Marathon – Grete Waitz.
I’ve been training a lot on the treadmill during the week, mainly because I’ve been getting up before it gets light out and getting home when it is already dark. However now that school is officially over I will try to get at least one of my week runs outside. My weekend runs have always been outside so that’s good.
In the book it encourages as many runs outside as possible because it allows your muscles and joints to become conditioned to the constant pounding of the pavement. The treadmill doesn’t have a great simulation to outdoor running. One positive thing about the treadmill is that it also gives your joints and body a rest. So today I got home and of course it was pretty dark out – I headed to the gym and decided to try some of the tips the author writes about in her book. She suggests to increase the incline to a 1.0 or 2.0 since outside terrain is never completely flat. I ran 1 mile flat and then ran the 2nd mile at a 1.0 incline for a 1/2 mile and the 2nd 1/2 mile at a 2.0 incline. Then the 3rd mile I ran flat and the 4th mile at 1.0 for a 1/2 mile and 2.0 for a 1/2 mile and so forth until I finished 8 miles. It actually made me focus on my running and body more because I had to monitor the time and mileage more carefully. Even though the incline doesn’t sound like much, I could feel a difference in the effort I had to exert.
Last night I consciously made the decision to work out after I got home from work since I was pretty exhausted from this week and felt I deserved an extra hour of sleep this morning. All day I was thinking about my work out – so looking back I wish I just woke up early and got it over with. I will keep that in mind next time I’m not wanting to get up early. The 8 miles felt good though. So far 20 miles logged for the week!