Vanilla’s Training Log 4-26-15 to 5-2-15

It’s Memorial Day weekend, so why not start posting my training logs for May?! 4/26:  Watched the replay of the London Marathon, then lifted and swam 1,650m.  Easy 4.15 miles in 35 minutes later that day. 4/27:  5.5 miles with 5 x 90″ hard. 4/28:  First bike ride since New Orleans.  17.5 miles on the trainer.  Not gonna lie, this was tough, and my legs still felt heavy.  4.4 miles more » Read more

Basil’s Training and Racing (while Injured) Log- 5.24.2015

It’s been a peak and valley, roller coaster of a week. On Monday, I completed my first track workout in 10 months, nailed my target paces and left feeling “the fire”, ready to race again. On Tuesday, I had an MRI with a steroid injection. On Wednesday and Thursday, my hip hurt worse than usual and my runs felt uncomfortable and slow. On Friday, I received the initial results of more » Read more

Rolling in the Deep (Tissue) for a More Effective Cool-Down

Last month we featured a piece on the warm-down: what it was, when to do it, and how to complete one. Naturally we had to follow that up with the final phase in any athlete’s workout: the cool-down. While you will likely do easy running, drills, strides or other active movement in your warm-down, for the cool down you will be focusing on muscle manipulation. Historically, that meant a lot more » Read more

Cutback Weeks: Stair Step Your Way to Running Success!

Pssst. I have a secret. Recovery weeks are key to getting faster. I learned this the hard way. In 2014, as a new-to-serious-training runner, I increased my mileage week after week and piled on the speed work. I improved very quickly: I saw my training paces jump from running for 8 miles at an 8:15 pace in early April to logging a 15.5 mile run at 7:20 pace on June 1, 2014. more » Read more

Readers’ Roundtable: Revising Running Goals

Happy birthday, Salty!  And welcome to the Masters’ League! While my dear sister was off having a wonderful 40th birthday weekend I started answering some Salty emails.  I came across a question from Salty reader Erin, who wanted some answers about forming a game plan so she could qualify for Boston before her 40th birthday.  And it got me thinking about a post Salty once wrote: Forget Time Limits When more » Read more

Caper’s Taper Training Log 5.17.2015

Tapering is supposed to be fun. Some of my running friends say it is their favorite part of the training cycle. “The hay is in the barn,” so you rest, and avoid injury, so that you can reap the rewards from months of hard work. I know these things are true, and so I taper. But I don’t particularly like it. My running body obsessively clings to routine and does more » Read more

TED for Runners: Make Prerace Anxiety Your Friend

Over the winter, I discovered the joy of watching TED talks while getting in my treadmill miles. Almost every time I watched one I’d think darn, this applies to running! I should write a post about this! So guess what. I am. In this new occasional series, I’ll be bringing you a TED talk and will discuss how to apply the message of the talk to your running. Our first talk is more » Read more

In Praise of Course Maps

Trail races are absolutely a different beast than your traditional road race. As a city dweller, I don’t get many opportunities to commune with nature in the great outdoors, so the chance to run a trail half marathon in a state park about 2 hours north of New York City seemed like something I should try at least once. I will always love New York and Central Park, but I’ve more » Read more

Caper’s Training Log — 5.10.15

Two weeks out from my spring marathon, I am almost giddy to be near the end of the first training cycle where my body mostly accepted and responded to regular training and did not leave me frequently in fear of injury. During the past week, the first of my taper, I had two productive sessions of speed work (an area where my training has been lacking): mile repeats at a more » Read more

A Lesson About Respect

On Sunday, April 26th, I embarked on a 26-and-a-quarter mile journey through New Jersey that changed my running life. The short story is that I wound up running 3:53:xx, a personal best by sixteen minutes. This makes it sound like an incredible victory. But really, there was no victory here. It was certainly an accomplishment, but the truth goes deeper. See, the thing is, I was cocky at this race. more » Read more

Pittsburgh Marathon: The Race That Didn’t Come Together.

… and that will happen. I’m not disappointed.  While nothing came together, it was totally awesome to line up on the starting line as one of the elite runners for the first time.  That alone was an incredible experience, one that for most of my life I never thought would happen. Besides, isn’t it the training that is supposed to be the fun part? Related PostsGoing Big: Jasmine’s Columbus Marathon more » Read more

Jasmine’s Pittsburgh Race Plan

Wednesday night was time to put together a race plan. Unlike last time, I just didn’t have enough training data to do it with all that much confidence, but I took my best shot. Race conditions look like they will be 52-deg start and a 63 deg finish, dry and sunny. With warm race conditions and a fair training cycle, I reduced the original target of sub 2:55 to 2:58:30. My more » Read more

5 Things You Need After a Marathon

Hooray! You just completed a marathon!  No matter if it was your first, fifth or fiftieth, there are some things that never change.  If you worked hard, your legs will feel like they’re made of rubber and need a good rest. But that’s not all you’ll need. I’m 5 days from finishing my most recent marathon and I can tell you I was surprised by the things I didn’t really consider before more » Read more

Jasmine 4 Days Out from Pittsburgh!

See that. That’s my serious Ethiopian face. We just opened the Ethiopian coffee at my office last week. I might not drink coffee, but it helped get me back into the badass running spirit. Sunday is the Pittsburgh Marathon. The elite lineup was sent out on Wednesday and, well, it was exciting and terrifying. I’m seeded eleventh behind the Kenyans, Ethiopians, last year’s winner, and a bunch of women who more » Read more

A Master Class on Competition

When we think of competition in running what do we think of? Tactics meant to outwit or demoralize an opponent? Elbows flying at the start of a track race? Fist pumping in triumph as a winner passes a despondent loser? Competition means one person basks in the thrill of victory, while another experiences the agony of defeat. Right? Despite these widespread views about competition, the word itself comes from a more » Read more