Saturday, November 14, 2009

Beware of Coyotes

The key to finishing a long run, half marathon, marathon, whatever it may be is to train your respiratory muscles. According to an article on, it's your respiratory muscles that will give out before your leg muscles. During your hard months of training your leg muscles have physiologically adapted to the endurance of your long runs. So, as you progress in mileage your legs will keep up with your drive to keep going further distances. I have stated before that the key to a good run is your breathing. Therefore, it makes sense that if you reach the final mile of your run and your breathing is off you are more likely to stop because "you can't breath". If you tweak your breathing rhythm it may cause a delay in oxygen reaching your working muscles; then, your body will then start to feel the affects of fatigue causing you to end your run prematurely.

Here are some tips and tricks to good breathing:
  • Good Posture: Having good posture at rest or exercise will help your breathing. Straightening your back will allow your diaphragm to contract and relax properly resulting in efficient air flow.
  • Nose First, Mouth Second: Breath in your nose and out your mouth especially during exercise. This cycle allows fresh air (oxygen) in and carbon dioxide out. If you breath in your mouth, out your mouth, and then back in your mouth you are basically breathing in the same air you exhaled; therefore, you are not wreaking the benefits of fresh air containing mostly oxygen.
  • Slow Your Breathing: If your breathing rate becomes increased try to slow it down. This can be a sign that your pace is too fast. Slow down your pace and correct your breathing. Otherwise, you may cause a cramp in your side or around your neck.
  • The Exercise of Breathing: Yep, there are even exercises for breathing. While at work or any down time you may have try some breathing exercises. This will help release some tension and regulate your breathing rhythm. Start with taking a deep breath through your nose, hold it for a few seconds, then out your mouth. You can do this for how ever long you feel needed.
*I want to include some Rants and Raves of mine for this week. A 9 mile run gives a person a lot to think about. So enjoy! :) :

Rants of the Week:
  • Tropical Strom Ida: Ida came into the ATL area Tuesday and Wednesday with a lot to say. I don't really appreciate the inconvenience you caused me, Ida. My running schedule got all screwed up. I guess now I have to make it up this week. Thanks.
  • 70 Degrees in November: It's a little too warm for November (look under my raves for the same topic). The crazy temperature change is making it difficult to judge how I should gear up for a run. The weather says Spring, but the time of year says Fall. Ah.
  • Beware of Coyotes: Really?! We went to our typical trail for our long run this morning to come across a newly posted beware sign. I'm not ranting because I came in contact with a coyote, but for the thought of coyotes roaming around in Georgia on a public trail. I mean really?! I just don't believe it.
Raves of the Week:
  • 70 Degrees in November: Although it seems so absurd I love it! It's the perfect running weather. Not too hot, not too cold. Perfect. It's just the thought of dressing for spring that blows my mind. There's nothing like a nice sunny warm run.
  • Sweetwater 420: He says it was the spaghetti that gave him his energy boost yesterday, but I say it was the Sweetwater 420 that gave me my boost today. Probably not true, but I'm going to keep believing it. It was carbolish (more like calolish)! :) Regardless, It was delicious. Thanks Roasters for a fabulous and yummy meal!
  • Turkey Day!: Thanksgiving and the Atlanta Half Marathon is less than 2 weeks away. Not only am I excited about running a race on Thanksgiving to experience what all the hype is about running on the holiday, but also about the A-M-A-Z-I-N-G food! Check out the Thanksgiving Calorie Counter to help make you feel better about what you eat, or how many "extra" calories you have allotted yourself after your long run! :)
Exercise of the Week: Superman: The Superman exercise helps increase lower back strength and flexibility. Having a strong core (ab area) is only half of the equation to good body strength and flexibility. You want a nice balance between your core and back muscles to help reduce any unwanted stress on the muscles. There are three different progression levels of the exercise below:

Beginner Superman:
  • Lay on the floor/mat on your stomach. Place your arms out in front and legs out behind you.
  • Lift one arm up while lifting the opposite leg up.
  • Hold for 2 seconds.
  • Lift the other arm and leg up.
  • Hold for 2 seconds. That is 1 set.
  • Repeat the cycle for at least 3 sets.
Intermediate Superman:
  • Lay on the floor/mat on your stomach. Place your arms out in front and legs out behind you.
  • Lift both arms up while keeping your legs on the ground.
  • Hold for 2 seconds.
  • Lift both legs up while keeping your arms on the ground.
  • Hold for 2 seconds. That is 1 set.
  • Repeat the cycle for at least 3 sets.
Advance (Full) Superman:
  • Lay on the floor/mat on your stomach. Place your arms out in front and legs out behind you.
  • Lift both arms and legs up off the ground. Your arms are to be straight out in front of you, and your legs straight out behind you.
  • Hold for 2-5 seconds.
  • Repeat the cycle for at least 3-5 sets.
Training Tip of the Week: Beware of Coyotes! No really, beware of any changes in your normal route. This can include road closures, fallen debris, trash, snakes, rocks, or any other obstacles. Look ahead while running so if you need to dodge something or take another route you are aware. It's a good safety precaution to prevent injury.

Training Songs of the Week: I've chosen some rock jams for your enjoyment of this week. Enjoy!

1. Kings and Queens- 30 Seconds to Mars
2. Zero- Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Happy Running,

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