Monday, October 28

Houston Marathon: Week 2

This is the third installment in a multi-part series documenting my path to the Houston Marathon.
Part I: Back to Work
Part II: Baseline
Part III: Week 1

Week 2 Primary Focus:           Strength & Endurance
Longest Run To-Date:             6.9mi

This week I had two sessions of weight training along with a hill repeat run. I also had a couple of bike rides for recovery purposes. Again, the primary focus now is on strength with some endurance.

Hill Repeats

Me, running hills in North Carolina
Hill repeats are a tremendous workout for various reasons. The most obvious is that they help build strength. Running up a steep incline forces you to push harder with more effort in order to maintain the same speed as you'd have on a flat terrain. This requires you to recruit all muscle fiber types, making you stronger in the process.* Hill repeats also naturally make you work on your stride (how far a part your feet land, how high you raise your knees, etc.) which feeds into better run form that we discussed in the previous post. Also, hills make you focus on your cadence (how quickly you turnover your feet) and the motion of your arms. These two things together can help generate more momentum while saving you some energy (efficiency). To read more on hill-running, click here.

*Although a technicality, I think it's important to note that working out actually makes you weaker. It's the rest/recovery which allows your muscles to repair themselves that make you stronger. We'll talk more about this in a subsequent post.


When I first ventured into the world of endurance sports I had no clue that people did weight training. And when I found out, I thought: "How could that possibly be a good idea? I thought endurance athletes wanted to be light..." I had so many misguided preconceptions. For starters, I assumed that all who lifted weights wanted to be body builders, as if the only exercises in the gym were bench press and bicep curls! The fact is that endurance athletes care much less about "being light" than they do about being economical and injury-free. They want to go as fast as they can, as easy as they can... and they want to do it without getting hurt.

Weights sessions are a critical component to the base period as they supplement strength training without the wear and tear from logging tons of miles. The fact is you can mimic running without actually running. By doing certain exercises, you can continue to build running strength while also mitigating the beating of your legs and joints. Some of the hardest workouts throughout all of my training will be non-running workouts such as weights sessions... especially if I do them with my coach! To read more on weight-training, click here.

You'll notice the time stamp of this post is actually 4 weeks into my official Houston Marathon training. Over the next week we'll get caught up on Weeks 3 & 4, at which point I'll begin updating you on a weekly cadence. Each update will include training details from the previous week, such as the types of workouts, the theme/focus, nutrition and other information.

1 comment :

  1. I really admire what you do . It will certainly bring efficiency.


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