|"Give up? Not a chance in the world!"|
I began running as a means to lose weight. The more I ran the more I enjoyed the comradery of running with a group. I have an incredible friends from all over that run in all sorts of disciplines from 5K to ultramarathons. There is a unique bond of friendship formed when you log countless training miles together.
How long have you been running? How did you get started? Why did you choose running over other activities?
I had run cross-country and some track in High School (mid-70's) but had failed miserably in the intervening years when trying to get back running. I signed up for a 5Km event on New Year's Eve in 2008 before starting a Learn to Run Clinic in January 2009. I was kicked out the LTR clinic and right in to the 5K clinic and I've been running consistently ever since.
How do you motivate yourself to run regularly? What about on the days the weather is bad or you are feeling particularly lazy?
Being a bit of a cardio addict the only thing that has been known to side track my workouts have been overuse injuries. I'm not a great cold weather runner, particularly in the late winter early spring when the weather is cold and damp. I find that any training runs lasting for over two hours problematic. My hip flexors get cold and I tighten up quite a bit. Those days, I usually hit the gym and alternate between the elliptical and the arc trainer.
Do you use a running coach, or read any books to aid in your training?
I've had the opportunity to run with some incredible people through the Running Room. These individuals are members of the local running community volunteering their time to lead the various clinics. Another local running specialty store has an excellent reputation their ability to provide training to help qualify for the Boston Marathon.
Currently, I'm training with Gabbi Whitlock (remember those Running Room clinic leaders). Gabbi lead my comeback to running in the 5K and 10K clinics. We joked about my bucket list items of Boston Marathon and Goofy Challenge. She added "do a triathlon" but since I'm a non-swimmer I was non-committal. Guess who Gabbi is teaching to Learn to Swim?
|2010 Toronto Goodlife Marathon Finisher Medal|
Starting out I ran mostly in clinic settings. Wednesday and Sundays are group runs open to anyone and then there was a dedicated clinic night which usually involved a guest speaker. Now that I'm training with a Triathlon group, they have something going on almost every day of the week except Friday. (These people are insane trainers)
Do your friends and family support your running or think you are crazy?
I have two teens and a pre-teen, everything I do is deemed crazy. My wife is incredibly supportive.
What is your favorite running terrain (road, trail, treadmill)?
I'd love to do more trail running but I run mostly on the road or through our park system on the bike path. I can run (or ride) almost 40km on the path with minimal interference from traffic and more importantly traffic lights. Given that there are only two seasons where I live (construction and winter) my hip flexors appreciate me avoiding the stopping and start running at traffic lights.
|London Ontario Bike Paths|
Two of my three marathons have been very difficult. I'm predisposed to calf cramps and while I seem to be able to train cramp free my race days are unmitigated disasters. My first marathon I cramped up at 23km (14 miles) and my second marathon was worse, my calves went at 19 km (12 miles). I finished both out of pure spite.
What is the most enjoyable race you've run to date?
I had a blast running the Goofy Challenge at Walt Disney World in Orlando in January 2011. The Goofy is a half marathon on Saturday and the full marathon on Sunday combining for a total of 39.3 miles in 36 hours.
Have you ever been injured due to running? What were the ramifications?
My running injuries have been predominantly overuse injuries that have sidelined me for a couple of weeks. I haven't been able to run since October 5th due to a nasty bout of Plantar Fasciitis and just last week I made my first trip to a podiatrist. My heels have been rather annoying beyond the PF. My diagnosis was painful piezogenic pedal papules. Basically I have herniated the fat pad tissue of my heel and it has encapsulated in scar tissue. The effect is like having stones in your shoe directly under your heel. The good news is that it is treatable
Do you use any music or run tracking devices when you run, or are you a naked runner?
As much as I like tunes in the gym, I don't tend to run with music even when I'm running in the park. I am a slave to my Garmin 305, I love numbers but I look at them once, log them, and move on. I hear a rumor that Santa Claus has the foot pod for my Garmin.
How do you get yourself through the difficult parts of your runs? Do you have a personal mantra or do you just give up?
Give up? Not a chance in the world! I've pulled the plug on a couple of bad training runs but never stepped off a race course even when I could barely stand up from calf cramps. I'm not completely insane, I have DNS's (Did Not Start) in two events, both due to previous injury. This spring, I switched from the full marathon to the half marathon in Toronto when I was feeling the effects of over training. I knew a full marathon would be a disaster. I PR'd the half and took some down time.
A lot of runners know that "Who has the runs" has a double meaning. How do you deal with the occasional "problem" that plagues every runner at one time or another?
Constitutionally I've never had those types of issues running (yet). We do ensure good route planning for other group members who make frequent stops.
|Sunrise at the 2011 WDW Marathon|
Pure and simple - Just Do It! In Canada, visit your local Running Room they will get you started. For others, find a Couch to 5K program or Google it. Local running specialty stores know exactly how to help.
What is your next big race?
I'm returning to Hamilton in March for my second crack at Around the Bay. ATB is the oldest running event in North America. It's a 30 km event run in March in Ontario, this usually results in the trifecta of early spring weather - cold, windy, and wet. If it's none of those then you've been cheated of the full Around the Bay experience. And, then there are always the hills that start at the 20 km mark.
What is your immediate running goal?
The short term goal is to get healthy and back on my feet to resume running. This past summer my goal was form and speed. I'd like to run the Ottawa Marathon this spring but I think it will likely be a few half marathons. Perhaps if everything goes well a full in the Fall, maybe Chicago?
What is your ultimate running goal?
Boston Baby!! I want to feel the absolute joy of making the turn on to Boylston Street.
Do you have a way we can keep track of your progress (Twitter, Facebook, Blog, etc)
Blog: Radical Running Blog
Daily Mile: http://www.dailymile.com/people/JeffR3