Having the experience of many races from 5k to 50k, I have some perspective on running. I also have experience as a new runner, a consistent intermediate runner, and as a marathoner and ultramarathoner. I have been around the block, so my thoughts on some things may be different from more elite runners who are used to being at the top of their game genetically and with their training and results.
|Evangeline Lilly has 100 problems, but her looks ain't one.|
Well, uh, of course you don't have to be too concerned with your weight or your looks when you are Evangeline Lilly. Easy for her to say. That would be like Warren Buffet telling us that money isn't everything, you know. (I appreciate her message by the way, very positive, but just sort of amusing from someone as physically gifted as she.)
The long and short of it is that running is a struggle for me, and it always has been. I am not a natural, and when people ask me "What is the one major challenge you face as a marathoner?" I always say "Gravity." I hope that my perspective as a struggling runner starting out again, but with this body of work behind me, will inform my writing.
This is a good place to ask...if you are an average runner and you have any questions that you wish you could ask yourself two or three years from now about your running, try me! I may have the answers for you while really having context and a similar set of tools. I enjoy reading elite blogs as much as the next runner, but I am not sure I learn as much from their writing as I do when I read about people like me that have to work so hard to get even average results. I am not an expert, but I have lots of past mini-failures on my side to learn from.
In short, I am about to embark on many new-runner challenges like breaking into double-digits (miles) for the first time (well, in my case the first time in a long while), weight loss, durability and strength training, building workouts, following a training plan, intermediate goals, etc. We are in this together, new runners, so lets stick together and get out there and run.
Of course, the biggest problem for new runners is usually the "too-much-too-soon" trap. Your muscles and bones and tendons, your architechtural "foundation," just can't adapt as fast as your cardiovascular capacity can. So, what you end up with is a heart (and lungs) that are willing, but a framework that is weak. Do what I do and stick with a plan, limit your running (less running now means better, longer, MORE running later), and try a lot of strength training work or alternative cardio work.
If I can offer you one minor piece of marathon training advice before I go, it is this: balance your early season running with strength training, and do lots and lots of exercises for your hip flexors, especially. Strong hips = strong feet and knees and backs and necks. Take a look at the excellent Runner's World tutorial HERE. Just trust me on this, I have experience in hurting all of those things before!
Take a look at the detailed photo album on the Average Guy Facebook page and "like" us while you are at it!