UA5k Team – Week4

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February 23, 2013 by Darlene McC

Happy Saturday Amazons!

It’s rainy and a little miserable here in NYC; but that wasn’t enough to stop a few of us from running outside this week.  It’s easy to lose focus on your goals when the weather didn’t get the memo about your commitment.  Are you the kind of gal who lets a little precipitation hold you back?

If you’re new to the UA5k Team you can check out the intro post to see what we’re all about.

This Week’s Homework:

Couch to 5K (Beginners) Week 4:

Our beginners we’re working from the Couch to 5k program.  There are a million apps to support you in your growth to becoming a 5k Aficionista, including RunKeeper & Map My Run.  Both have “Couch to 5k Trainers” that cue you when to run and walk.  Week 4 of Couch to 5k is:

Workout 1 Workout 2 Workout 3
Brisk five-minute warmup walk, then:
Jog 1/4 mile (or 3 minutes)
Walk 1/8 mile (or 90 seconds)
Jog 1/2 mile (or 5 minutes)
Walk 1/4 mile (or 2-1/2 minutes)
Jog 1/4 mile (or 3 minutes)
Walk 1/8 mile (or 90 seconds)
Jog 1/2 mile (or 5 minutes)
Brisk five-minute warmup walk, then:
Jog 1/4 mile (or 3 minutes)
Walk 1/8 mile (or 90 seconds)
Jog 1/2 mile (or 5 minutes)
Walk 1/4 mile (or 2-1/2 minutes)
Jog 1/4 mile (or 3 minutes)
Walk 1/8 mile (or 90 seconds)
Jog 1/2 mile (or 5 minutes)
Brisk five-minute warmup walk, then:
Jog 1/4 mile (or 3 minutes)
Walk 1/8 mile (or 90 seconds)
Jog 1/2 mile (or 5 minutes)
Walk 1/4 mile (or 2-1/2 minutes)
Jog 1/4 mile (or 3 minutes)
Walk 1/8 mile (or 90 seconds)
Jog 1/2 mile (or 5 minutes)

Urban Amazon Faster 5k Week 4:

More experienced runners who are on the UA Faster 5k program.  This week we’re repeating the workouts from week 1 to give your body time to acclimate to it’s new level of effort.

A few quick labels in the workout:

Hills: Hill repeats are great for building hamstring strength and learning to run from your BUTT (and hamstrings.  But I just like saying it.)  Find a hill of decent length that takes about :45 to 1:00 to run up.  As you get stronger and faster you may need a bigger hill.

Tempo. In a tempo run you pace at your wanna-be “race tempo” in bursts.  You’ll need a well-known mile, whether a track or using a running app with your smart phones GPS.   For example: Say Jane currently runs a 10 minute mile 5k pace, but wishes she ran at 9:00.  She’s going to do half a mile shooting for 9:00 (which will feel really fast to her) and then run a mile for 10 minutes to catch her breath.  Then repeat.

Workout 1 Workout 2 Workout 3
Hill Time!  Charge up your hill of choice and take 2:30 to jog back down to the bottom of the hill.  Rinse.  Repeat.  TEMPO! Go 3/4 of a mile at “desired” pace but keep the same recovery distance. Repeat 3 times. Long & Strong. Go out an get one in; but keep it under 8 miles.

Why Treadmills Wont Help You

There are plenty of conflicting opinions out there on the “right” way to run, most of the people I trust agree: treadmills aren’t great for runners.  Ask any serious runner where they do the bulk of their training and they’ll tell you.  It’s outside.  There are a few good reasons why

Running Outside After Treadmill Training is “Harder”

I hear this one a lot.  After a winter spent on a treadmill, that first jog outside feels “hard”, and I’m often asked why.  When you run outside your body has to propel itself up and down as well as forward.  When on a treadmill the ground “moves beneath you” so you don’t have to work as hard.  That means when you take it back outside you’re less efficient; and it feels harder.

Treadmills = Poor Mechanics

More importantly, running on a treadmill changes your running form.  While we haven’t identified the “right” way to run, we do know that your body has it’s “own right way”.  Treadmill running encourages you to stretch your leg farther out, making the muscles that flex your hips do more work and those that extend (your hamstrings and glutes) do less. The mechanics of treadmill running are so similar your brain doesn’t know the difference and your gait will change.  This can lead to higher injury rates.

Hard Decks = Ouch!

Even in your expensive shoes, your feet aren’t “made” for striking hard plastic over and over.  You’re already over-striding (see above in Treadmills = Poor Mechanics) and you’re doing it on a hard, shock resistant, artificial material.  Those two things combined can be hell on the knees if you’ve got any misalignment you don’t know about.

Short Answer: Just Go Outside!

UA5k

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