Sunday, March 24, 2013

Humans - Built For Speed

Are humans built for speed? "Fast" is relative. A Kenyan can run a 4 minute mile, but a squirrel can still get away from him. So let's assume that we are built for running faster than the average run-of-the-mill 5K runner.

Since reading Scott Jurek's book, Eat & Run I have adopted some of his methods of running faster, for longer distances. But Tyler, why would you want to run long distances and run faster? Well, I am lazy. Not in the sense that I won't get out there and run, I just don't want to run for a long period of time. By running faster I can get in the mileage I need without wasting my day.

So what did I do to start running faster? I started running faster! It's that easy! Previously I had found that if I ran with someone fast, for example my buddy Mitch, I would get comfortable at an 8 minute pace and never think twice about it. I also found that if I started out running around 10 minute miles, it would be a chore to run the 8s. Since I have started running faster a majority of my runs have been started at an 8 minute pace or faster, hills or not. This gets me into the groove.

Yesterday, Mitch Pless mentioned in his speech(which was very good btw) that you need to train at a relatively faster pace at least a few times a week. This is because during an ultra, if you can maintain 10 minutes per mile you will do very well. By running faster during training you actually have to slow yourself down in your race, making ultras easier. I feel the 5k/10k crowd does the opposite by going as hard as they can for the race. This is the right thing to do in a short race, but ultras are a whole different game.

So what did I borrow from Scott Jurek? One of the things he mentioned was a zen-like breathing during running. He says that during his faster paces he keeps long and slow breaths, like a yoga pose. My first thought was, "Yeah right? And run fast?" Well I actually tried it and found that it puts me in the faster paced groove(as mentioned above) much faster than going out huffing and puffing.

I have a few other tricks up my sleeve that I am testing out. I currently and reading The Art of Running Faster by Juian Goater and Don Melvin. I skimmed the book for about 20 minutes and have already shaved a few minutes off my comfortable mile. I will give more tips when I finish it and test some techniques.Thanks for reading!

No comments:

Post a Comment