long runs

Long Run Tips

Long runs aren't your typical "head out the door and run" activity.  Unlike shorter distance runs, any run lasting over 90 minutes should include a certain amount of advance planning, taking into consideration things like safety precautions, nutritional and hydration needs, weather conditions and transportation needs. To avoid disaster during a long run, check out our top things you should know before you go.

The primary purpose of your long runs is to build up time on your feet. In other words, build endurance by challenging your body’s ability to run for long periods of time.  Although the most important aspect of these long runs is plain and simple - log the miles, there are a few key considerations to take into account if you want to get the most out of this type of training run:
 
1) Race Pace Practice: Typically, you want to run 30-90 seconds per mile slower than your goal pace or race effort during your long runs. If you are training for specific time, inserting a few miles at your goal race pace in the middle or end of your long training runs is a great way to mentally and physically prepare yourself for what it actually feels like to run your target pace after an hour or two of running.  A word of caution – don’t be discouraged if race pace feels tough. Additional training, taper and adrenaline will help you on race day. Instead, focus on your ability to hit your target time and maintain it consistently for a few miles.
 
2) Hydration & Refueling Strategy: Use your long runs to practice your race day hydration plan. Too many people get sidelined with stomach cramps and bathroom issues as a result of too much or too little water on race day. Check out how frequently water is offered during your race and practice drinking at similar intervals during your long runs.  On your long training runs, we recommend drinking 4-6 ounces of water every couple of miles. If running over an hour, your body will want more than water. Include 30-60 grams of carbohydrates (150-250 calories) per hour during any run longer than an hour. This may include sports drinks, gels or energy bar. Feel free to ask us for refueling recommendations.
 
3) Dress Rehearsal: Use your long runs as dress rehearsals for the real deal by wearing clothes and running accessories that you plan to wear on race day. Longer distances bring out chaffing in new, and often unforeseen places, so it’s best to get familiar ahead of time with what works and what doesn’t. You can also do this for your pre-workout meal prep!

Motivation Monday - Week 3 of Marathon Training

Week 3 brought my first hot, sweaty runs and hiking as cross training. Monday was an easy 5.5 miler, Tuesday I did 3 miles and the Hot Bird Running workout. Wednesday was our last Forest Park trail run. It was another hilly one! It was a great way to end the series. I felt much stronger than I have in past weeks.

Friday, I woke up and ran 14. Friends joined me for 10 of those miles which was great and needed! It was hot! I was doing great and keeping the pace to a nice 8:05-8:10 until about mile 12 when I started to slow down. By mile 13, I was down to about a 9 minute pace and looking for water. I've found that my body is just kinda done about 1 mile before my long runs end. Going to have to fake myself out in future runs!

I stretched, used my Tiger Tail roller and had a great day walking about Portland and eating well. I was ready for bed by 11pm that night though!

Saturday, I went to the coast and hiked Neahkanie Mt with some friends. It was a beautiful hike. Jessica was down below running with her Dad and baby, Lucia. We met up after for some drinks, food and a little smashball on the beach. 

Week 3 was great - I didn't do everything on my plan but I felt pretty strong and ready to tackle week 4 and the half marathon on Sunday. 

An Interview with a Runner

Gail DiLisio, is our featured runner this week. We met her this summer while helping her and her partner, Cathy Bolz (on the left), train for the Smuttynose Rockfest Half Marathon in Hampton, New Hampshire. Her dedication and commitment astound us! She's lost over 50 lbs and is on her way to PRs! 

How do you know us - Hot Bird Running?
I heard about Hot Bird Running from the Lean Green Bean blog

What are your current running goals? Are you training for anything? 
My goal is to gain speed and be more efficient when I run, especially on long runs.  I am currently training for the More/Fitness Half Marathon in April.

Who or what inspires you to run?
I get inspiration to run from the challenge of improving my run, whether it be technique, speed etc.  The chance to improve is perfect motivation for me.

What is your favorite running route/place to run?
I love to run anywhere outside, even if it is freezing out.  My favorite route is Central Park - it is the perfect blend of rolling hills along with great people watching!

Who is your favorite person to run with and why? 
My favorite person to run with is my partner, Cathy.  We both started running 2 years ago when we each lost 50 pounds and found running a perfect way to stay fit and provide variety with our workouts.

What is the best piece of running advice you ever received and who was it from?
Well, the best advice came from Jessica Green, of course!  She taught me that if am tired on long runs, I can keep my legs moving just by pumping my arms harder.  Believe me, I have used this technique plenty of times!

What is your favorite running gear/piece of clothing?
My Garmin 310 has been great for training and tracking miles.

Fall Marathon Training Tips

 Training for a fall half-marathon or marathon? You'll have some long runs ahead of you and we want you to look forward to them (instead of dreading them!) Here are our top tips for getting through it with a smile and injury free.

1. Get up early and run. It's hot out and heat will affect your run and how you feel. Take advantage of empty streets (in NYC) and enjoy a long run. To know how heat affects your pace, see this nifty calculator from Runners Connect.

2. Water. Drink lots of it throughout your day. Bring water with you on your runs over 1 hour or know where water fountains are along your route. 

3. Find a buddy. Run with a friend or meet up with a group. Those long runs are well, long and having someone to talk to or to help push you through to the end is awesome. Jessica and I became such good friends because of running! 

4. Bring Money. Just in case! You might need extra water, a coconut water, food or a subway ride home. 

5. New Routes. Pick new routes and/or place to run. A change of scenery might be just what you need to put some pep back into your runs. Need some help with routes? Check out MapMyFitness for routes.

6. Ice. Buy ice packs (bags of frozen peas work great)! They will become your best friend during training. Your muscles swell and might be inflammed after long or strenous workouts. Ice helps reduce the swelling by constricting the blood vessels and the cold from an ice pack provides pain relief.  For those who want the real deal, we love our Nortech Labs Reusable Hot/Cold Pack (size 8'x10')

7. Train Smart. Marathon training is a challenging, long term, phsyically demanding commitment.  Enter into it wisely and listen to what your body tells you throughout your training.  Remember, you are training not just for the finish line, but also to arrive at the start injury free on race day.  Treat your body to an extra rest day or a sports massage every once and a while. If you are in NYC, schedule a massage with the best massage therapist in town, Jennifer Mayer

8. All runners are not created equal.  Follow your own training plan adjusted to your phsyical needs, abilities and schedule.  Just because the other people you in marathon training are running 40 miles a week or not doing any speedwork, doesn't mean that's right for you. Personalize your training and understand what workouts YOU should do and how much is appropriate for YOUR body.  If you would like to learn how to implement tempo runs, interval workouts, hill training properly contact us to schedule a private coaching session.  We are offering a Fall Marathon program. Start anytime. Click here to read more about the program. 

There are so many great races this fall: NYC Marathon, Chicago Marathon, the Marine Corp Marathon, and the Portland Marathon to name a few. Comment below and tell us which race you are running.

 

 

 

Long Run Essentials: A Runner's Checklist

Long runs aren't your typical "head out the door and run" activity.  Unlike shorter distance runs, any run lasting over 90 minutes should include a certain amount of advance planning, taking into careful consideration things like safety precautions, nutritional and hydration needs, weather conditions and transportation needs.  To avoid disaster during a long run, here are our top things you should know before you go. 

KNOW . . .

1. YOUR ROUTE. This sets you up for everything else mentioned below, plus it prevents you from running longer than you should which can be costly if you are in the middle of specific race training  We're not saying that you need to know each and every turn, but you should have a general idea where you are running based on how far or long you plan to run that day.

2. WHERE YOUR WATER IS.  Does your route include drinking fountains? Or do you plan to buy water at various points along the way (in the middle and towards the end)? Or will you need to bring your own water or drop off water along your route before you begin? Don't forget to bring cash with you if you don't have free water throughout the entire run. 

3. THE WEATHER CONDITIONS. Check the weather forecast and consider changing conditions halfway through your run.  If the forecast calls for thunder and lightening halfway through your run, consider a less exposed route towards the end of your run.  Considering the weather is also important in deciding what to wear especially in regions prone to extreme heat and humidity or cold conditions.  For example: humidity plus cotton t-shirts or the wrong shorts during a long run = chaffing!

4. YOUR BAILOUT PLAN. It is essential to not only listen to your body if it's telling you that your long run isn't going to happen that day, but to be able to bail out of your run before it's too late.  In case you need to bail out early, bring extra cash and metrocard for unexpected transportation costs even when routed to start and finish near near your home or car.  Also, avoid areas with little to no support along the route (e.g. trail runs) if you are recovering from an injury or new to long distances.

5. YOUR REFUEL PLAN.  Every runner has their own unique refueling strategy on those 2 to 3 hour long runs.  Whatever your plan is, make sure you're prepared for it before leaving the house.  If you plan to pick something up along the way, don't forget to bring money to pay for it. 

6. WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET.  Don't leave home without some form of cash or bank card.  You won't regret bringing it and it can come in very handy in all different circumstances. 

7. WHERE YOUR KEYS ARE.  Nothing is worse than returning home after a long run to find you have locked yourself out either because you forgot your keys or they fell out during your bathroom pit stop or grabbing your shot bloks out of your pocket.  Our recommendation: put your keys somewhere that you won't access again until unlocking your door AND if they are in your pants/shorts pocket, make sure they don't fall out while going to the bathroom. 

8. SOMEONE ELSE IS LOOKING OUT FOR YOU.  Tell someone not on the run with you where you plan to run and approximately how long you estimate until your return. Always estimate the longest amount of time, rather than shorter to account for things like transportation, cool down, stopping for breakfast or lunch, or a slower pace than expected.  Think of this as, "if I am not back or you haven't heard from me by this time, something is wrong."  Make sure this person understands what to do in the event you are not back and where you might be if you're taking longer because you stopped for food or something else.