Tag Archives: Training

Great article for Barefoot Adventurers

Linda recently came across this article from the writer of Born To Run, widely considered to be the book on barefoot and natural running. As it turns out the article is pretty good. It gives a fair bit of history regarding the movement and could serve as a nice, brief introduction to any n00bs out the looking to find themselves some barefoot adventures for the first time. Once you’ve read the article, maybe you’ll even be inspired to read the whole book, which has been more or less continually shove down my throat by this girl (although I have to admit that I still haven’t read it…shhhh!).

Also, for those of you persistent enough to make it to the end of the article, you are probably wondering just what the heck the “100 up” drill is all about — as well you should! Since I’m too busy/lazy to make a video this week, here’s a video of the author making a rather silly demonstration of the drill. Yes, I know it’s not embedded and that’s a pain, but us moochers who don’t host our own website are rather technologically impaired at the moment. More to come on that later…

Leave a comment

Filed under Sweatin'

Newton Running Clinic and a Free Massage!

This weekend was just chock full of excitement down at the Cleveland Running Company. For those of you keeping track, this was officially our third attempt at making it down to Shaker Heights (about 35 minutes away) in time for the 9 am start of the store’s Run Club, but our first success. Of course, no weekend run would be truly complete without Linda being injured in some way (two weeks ago, she was run down by a drunk biker, this week, she turned her ankle 30 feet from our doorstep), so this cat went out solo for a nice little 6-miler with Erica, the leader of the group. Upon returning to the store, we were again greeted with a veritable smörgåsbord of bagels, drinks, horribly un-nutritious peanut butter cookie squares, and apples (courtesy of our recent trip to Patterson Fruit Farms). After indulging, yours truly was treated to a free massage, courtesy of a local massage therapist who visits our little club every other week. Once again, this is why brick-and-mortar stores are WICKED AWESOME! Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Sweatin'

Triathloning for Noobs: Training Gear

Based on the limited nature of my knowledge of triathloning, I’m assuming most of you reading this blog for the triathlon information it provides are noobs. Thus, it is entirely possible that you, sitting on the other side of the computer screen, currently have no idea what you’re doing. If that’s the case, I have some good news for you – every single triathlete who has ever lived, amateur and pro alike, was once exactly like you.

The other good news is that there is very little gear you actually need before setting out on your Great Triathlon Adventure. Some people (I refuse to say whether or not I am included in this group) feel the need to go out there and buy every piece of equipment they could ever possibly need before getting down to it and actually doing triathlon, but I’m here to say that it’s actually much simpler (and cheaper) than that. Once you procure the items on this list, you’ll be ready for 90% of what comes your way in your first season of the greatest sport known to mankind*.

Having said all that, if you’ve really got a wad of cash burning its way through your wallet and you’d prefer that it not singe your butt cheeks, check out the Wish List at the bottom of the post for some more fun ideas.

 

*Please note that The Gourmet Triathlete rarely checks the validity of its factual claims. If you have any complaints about this or anything else on our site, feel free to direct them at that blank wall behind you.

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under Sweatin'

Running Shoes: Minimalist vs. Traditionalist (First thoughts from a n00b)

Excessively long titles aside, I just took my first serious run in my new Merrell Trail Gloves, and I think it’s time to put some of my initial reactions out there. If you’re reading this and have some experience one way or the other, feel free to join the peanut gallery below…

NOTE: Although I’ve only had more-than-passing experience with these particular shoes, it’s very likely that I’m about to make some serious generalizations about minimalist shoes as a class below. Keep in mind that I’m just making assumptions, or just replace “minimalist shoes” with “this specific pair of Merrell Trail Gloves after running this particular mileage through downtown Cleveland” if you’re feeling really picky.

Continue reading

4 Comments

Filed under Sweatin'

Top 5 reasons to join a running (or biking, or swimming) group

1. Motivation

I’ll be the first to admit that there are many days in any given training season where I will make any and every excuse to myself to avoid going outside to workout. Once I’m outside, I’m happy as a littleneck (if you’re not from New England, feel free to substitute “clam” instead), but just making the decision to get my butt out the door can be a trial. Having said that, I’ve found nothing more motivating than knowing other people are relying on you for their own workout (NOTE: this particular benefit is NOT incurred if you choose to ally yourself with a group of similarly unmotivated athletes).

In addition, workout groups can provide you with on-the-fly motivation during your workouts. I’m sure anyone else with group training experience can attest to the fact that a well-timed “Move your a**!!” can completely turn around a rapidly deteriorating interval.

2. Competition

Training groups, just like the people that comprise them, come in all flavors and varieties. Some are more laid back, while others are highly competitive. Depending on your personal style of training, one type of group may be better suited than another, but I am of the personal opinion that a little friendly competition (even if only in your own mind) can be very motivating from time to time.

3. Conversation

Let’s face it – no matter how gorgeous the scenery is (Northern Californian mountain trails notwithstanding), no one looks forward to a 75-mile ride with nothing but irate drivers and an internal monologue of this song for company. Having others around, especially people who share your interests (at least as far as athletics go) can be lifesaving, or at the very least an anchor for your sanity.

4. Coaching

Having been involved in multisport for the last 2 or 3 years, I’ve noticed something that is almost universally true – if you are a runner or biker by trade who later made the transition (pardon the intentional pun) to triathlon, you are guaranteed to suck at swimming. This can range anywhere from swimming simply being the slowest leg of the race to being terrified of even pouring a glass of water for fear of drowning, but it is nevertheless a truism. One thing I think that contributes to this is the fact that very few people without a background in competitive swimming ever get the chance to work with a proper instructor, and being that technique holds much more sway over swimming performance than it does for running or biking, this leaves many of us at a huge disadvantage.

One of the beautiful things about joining a training group is that there is bound to be someone with more experience than you in one or more disciplines who will, in all likelihood, be more than willing to divulge their hard-earned trade secrets. This is doubly true of more “official”-type groups, like the Cleveland Triathlon Club or any of the many local chapters of US Master’s Swimming, who may even have actual fully-qualified coaches available at some or all group training sessions. I STRONGLY suggest joining one of thes groups for swimming, but consider doing so for biking and/or running too, because a decent coach can often make the difference between a good race and a podium finish.

5. Information

Fully-qualified coaches aside, other athletes can also serve as an absolute treasure trove of information. Whether you’re in the market for a new bike, thinking about trying barefoot running for the first time, or just looking for a new race in the area, you are guaranteed to find the answers if you just ask the right people. Having a group of fellow athletes whose advice you trust and who you can talk with in person can be extremely helpful in this regard.

2 Comments

Filed under Sweatin'

Barefoot Adventures #2: The Beginnings of Wisdom

Now that my feet have mostly healed (Adventures #1 was actually written about a week ago), I decided to give it another go. Linda and I took a nice little jaunt around the block to take in the beautiful sights of downtown Cleveland, and I took the boys out of their rubber cages for a spell.

Again, it felt pretty good to run sans technology. Not that I’m against all forms of advancement, since I’m well aware we were never meant to run on asphalt, and if needs must…Still, that extra spring in my step and the I-could-run-ANYWHERE feeling (for inflection, see Exhibit A…or alternatively, Exhibit B) is hard to resist.

Continue reading

5 Comments

Filed under Sweatin'

Barefoot Adventures #1

My new running shoes

My new running shoes

7:00 pm: It’s been almost 1 month to the day since the Cleveland Downtown Olympic-distance tri. Aside from Linda’s first 5k, I’ve done absolutely nothing since then. Methinks it’s time for a nice short run to kick off the post-season training.

7:03 pm: Pretty slow pace, so I’m trying to spice it up. I’ve been thinking a lot about barefoot running lately, mostly wondering if it’s really as good as some say it is, or if (as I suspect) it’s just another passing fad to make more money for shoe companies. I’m gonna try running more on my toes and see how it feels.

7:05 pm: We’re about 3/4 of a mile out. Toe running kind of sucks. It just feels like I’m sprinting really really slowly, which makes my shoes scuff the sidewalk and honestly slows me down, but we just hit a stretch of really smooth paving, so let’s take of the shoes and see if it feels any different.

Continue reading

3 Comments

Filed under Sweatin'