Author: The Dragonfly Swimmer Published: April 25th, 2011
By Susan Rinkunas
Earlier today, Runner's World surpassed 200,000 fans on our Facebook page! To commemorate this milestone and to thank you for following us, we’ve got some giveaways and discounts, including the lowest prices ever on RW training plans and several RW books.
First, we're giving one free issue to the first 200 U.S. residents who sign up here! UPDATE: We've reached the maximum of 200 free issues.
And for the next 200,000 seconds (through 2 am ET on Thursday 4/28), we're also happy to offer:
Author: The Dragonfly Swimmer Published: April 25th, 2011
Along with most of the Runner's World staff, I will be away from the office today for a Very Serious and Important all-day off-site meeting.
Regular RW Daily blogging will resume tomorrow. Meantime, Windy the Magic Helium Dispenser Clown* is in charge.
Do whatever he says. Even if it's something evil.
Which it probably will be.
* About Windy: Readers in Boston, and visitors to that city, may find Windy the Magic Helium Dispenser Clown familiar. That is because he lives in a bar called The Pour House Bar & Grille on Boylston Street, which serves a mean breakfast, where your blogger ate multiple times last weekend, under Windy's watchful eye.
Author: The Dragonfly Swimmer Published: April 21st, 2011
Tyrone Curry. Screen grab via MSNBC.com
Regular readers of this blog know that every so often, we take a break from the weird and the wacky to spotlight an unusually inspirational or moving story.
Well, it's time for a break.
Today's moving story comes to us courtesy of MSNBC.com, which reports that a high school janitor in Washington state is buying the kids at his school a new track.
Curry, who is also the school's track and field coach, won nearly $3.4 million in the state lottery five years ago. Now he's making good on a promise he made to himself long ago, says MSNBC:
"Ten years ago, I said if I win some money, I'm going to put a track here."
In early April, coach Curry presented the district with $40,000 to go towards a brand new track. …
Curry said the gift he has given Evergreen pales in comparison to what the kids have given him.
"Kids do things for you," says Curry. "They keep you young."
Clean-up in Aisle Heart!
Have a good weekend, everyone.
We Have a Winner! Finally!
Two weeks ago, I asked you to write captions for three of my race photos from the Ukrop's Monument Avenue 10-K. The winner, I said, would get a shout-out here and a signed copy of The Runner's Rule Book (Rule 2.38: Race Photos Never Look Good).
It was a tough call. But the winner is…
"Damn the knackwurst, full steam ahead!" (For photo #2.)
The winning caption is from Run Hard Run Happy, who in a stroke of tactical genius simply reused a recent RW Daily headline. RHRH edged out an identical entry from Swirling Eddy by 56 minutes. (Sorry, Eddy.)
Honorable mentions go to…
Huskerme, who wrote: "This is just like beggar's canyon back home…woooo!" (Photo #1.) (Star Wars reference! Nice!)
Hotshot320, who wrote: "Why would they make us run through Cabbage Town?" (Photo #1.)
And everyone who made a flatulence joke. Always a nice touch.
Mr. or Mrs. Happy, expect an email from me shortly to arrange delivery of your prize. And thanks to all who contributed.
Author: The Dragonfly Swimmer Published: February 13th, 2011
Week #5 is done and I am quickly starting to see a pattern in these IM workouts. What I am realizing is that the workout is really defined as the entire week and not by any of the individual workouts during the week. Matt Fitzgerald (author of my workout plan) would probably say “duh – of course it is”, but as I wrapped up my long run earlier this morning, that was my big “ah-hah”. I wasn’t happy that I finished the run (which was miserable, by the way). I was happy that I had finished the week… uninjured and still motivated… with a real sense of achievement for completing another unit. Each week in the plan has a purpose and each week that I finish is completely satisfying. I guess you could call the feeling an “ironman high”… much like the runner’s high people talk about after they finish a good long run.
Anyway, the week went well. The swim sessions were most noteworthy. Tuesday was a killer 3,900m workout and Thursday was almost as brutal with 3,400m. My bike workouts were fine. For the most part, they were indoors with the exception of my Saturday long ride which got me 50 miles in just under 3 hours. Not bad, but it was cold, hilly, and I was in a hurry to get back so Mary Lynn and I could head over to the Fearrington House in Chapel Hill. My runs during the week were fine, but my long run this morning was awful. We were using a gift certificate to stay at the Fearrington house and breakfast didn’t start until after I was planning to start my run. So, I went with no food and no coffee and I had absolutely nothing. I ran for 1.5 hours and by the end, I was nearly crawling. And now I am absolutely exhausted. Maybe I just had too much wine last night.
This week is a recover week, so I should get a chance to relax a bit which is good since I will be travelling out to Cincinnati for a few days towards the end of the week.
An age- and season-appropriate version of the beer mile: the eggnog mile… The world's fastest marathon runner is the new face of Johnny Walker whiskey… 37 entrants are registered for the "roller skating marathon" at the Xiamen International Marathon on Jan. 2… In Canada: Martin Parnell, a 55-year-old mining engineer, can see the light at the end of the tunnel. His quest to run 250 marathons in 2010 will be complete today when he finishes a 42.2-kilometer run in Cochrane, Alberta. Across the country, a new Terry Fox statue, to be erected at the site where he started his "Marathon of Hope," is set to be designed… "You'll pay through the nose for gear" is just one of the ten things marathon organizers won't say, says the Wall Street Journal… "There's no such thing as a PowerBar tree" is just one of the 99 health secrets for men from Dr. Oz… Here's a tough challenge: Win a "moose mug." The only requirement is to run a marathon in two hours plus your age in minutes…
Author: The Dragonfly Swimmer Published: July 13th, 2010
I have become increasingly aware of a surprising, if not ironic fact about my transitions from bike to run. While it does feel as though my legs are heavy and sluggish when starting the run, I have found that I am a MUCH faster runner coming off the bike than I am during a “normal” run. This is not simply because I am sufficiently warmed up, because the reality is that after 40 miles or so, my legs are tired; far beyond warmed up.
This little phenomenon prompted me to search around on the web and I haven’t found anyone else praising the biking gods for making them a faster runner. What I have found is a substantial debate around the significance of keeping your bike cadence and run cadence the same during a triathlon. The argument is that by keeping them the same, you avoid muscle confusion. Another view is that it doesn’t really matter if they stay the same, but the cadence does tend to be same simply because of muscle memory; if you ride at 90 rpms, your legs simply continue on their merry way at 90 rpm once you start running. The third view is that cadence doesn’t mean squat as long as your comfortable.
My own personal opinion is a combination of 1 and 2. First, I believe that you tend to run at the same rpm as you do on the bike due to muscle memory. If your legs are pumping away at a certain pace for hours, it’s only natural that they will continue to work at that pace even though the mode of movement is completely different. But I also believe you should keep your bike and run cadences the same – but not to avoid muscle confusion. Instead, they should be the same because the optimal rpm (for me, anyway) is the same on both the bike and on the run. As someone that is currently working on adjusting his stride to be shorter and thus creating less stress on his body, I have an optimal running cadence of 90-95. On the bike, I find my most efficient riding is at 95 rpm. Very close.
What’s interesting and a bit frustrating for me is that when I go out for a run workout (not as part of a brick workout or a triathlon), I really struggle to get my cadence up to 88, let alone 90-95. My pace at that cadence tends to be anywhere from 7:30 – 8:30 min/mile. After a mile or two, I can get it up to 90, but it’s not easy. When I come off the bike, my natural stride is pumping away at 93 or 94 rpms – and my pace is from 6:30-7:00 min/mile. And what’s crazy, is that I can keep that up - for awhile. There is NO way I could start from nothing and work up to a 6:30 min/mile.
I guess I am not making an argument so much as a personal observation which is this: I am a much faster and more efficient runner coming off the bike as compared to my standard run. Am I the only one that experiences this?