Selecting Your Spots – iRunFar


AJW's Taproom[Author’s Note: This article is part of an occasional series on the unique opportunities and challenges of growing older as a runner.]

On a current future, I had purpose to mirror again on an interview I did a number of years in the past with completed American ultrarunner Courtney Dauwalter. Within the dialog, I requested Dauwalter, who’s well-known for her comparatively unstructured coaching, how she sometimes plans her runs.

In basic Courtney fashion, she replied, “Nicely, about half a mile from our home, I come to an intersection. If I flip proper, it’s a brief, simple run, and if I flip left, it’s an extended, more durable run.”

For my part, Dauwalter confirmed super knowledge in her splendidly easy idea. When setting up and executing endurance coaching plans, we regularly say, “Make the straightforward days simple and the laborious days laborious.”

AJW volunteering at Western States 100

AJW (middle) whereas volunteering on the Western States 100. All images courtesy of AJW.

As an getting older long-distance runner, I’ve discovered that some of the necessary methods I can incorporate Dauwalter’s knowledge is to easily choose my spots. On any given day, a few mile into my run, I usually know what the day has in retailer. No matter what is likely to be in my coaching plan — typically I’ve it, and typically I don’t. On the times I really feel good, I  rapidly decide and normally go more durable, or longer, or each.

As a youthful runner, I in all probability would have by no means deviated from my plan, as I tended to focus extra on staying disciplined. As I’ve aged, I’ve realized that by making extra on-the-fly selections and selecting my spots, I’m displaying extra self-discipline than I’d be by sticking extra carefully to a plan.

A very good instance of this was from a current weekday run. After leaving my home on a random Tuesday with a plan to run a simple six miles, I rapidly realized it was day. Turning left as a substitute of proper onto Oak Road, I modified my plan and ran eight miles. After crossing sixteenth Road, I added a dozen one-minute laborious intervals over the following three miles. Since these felt so good, I made a decision to go an extra two miles to make the run an excellent 10.

AJW getting awards at Western States 100

AJW (second from proper) on the 2014 Western States 100.

What began as a deliberate simple six miler morphed into an eight-mile tempo run and in the end ended up as a swift 10 miler. That is definitely not one thing I’d have executed years in the past, however via expertise, listening to my getting older physique, and being keen to remain versatile throughout a run, I’ve discovered that selecting my spots could make an enormous distinction in my health and add objective to my coaching with out an excessive amount of obsessive planning.

Bottoms up!

AJW’s Beer of the Week

Wallace Brewing Company logoThis week’s Beer of the Week comes from Wallace Brewing Firm in Wallace, Idaho. The 1910 Black Lager is extremely refreshing and brewed within the German Black Lager custom. Crafted with wealthy malt and Idaho-grown hops, it’s nicely value a visit to Wallace if you’re within the space.

Name for Feedback

  • Do you observe a set coaching plan or subscribe to the turn-left or turn-right philosophy?
  • Has your coaching philosophy modified over time?
AJW and his family

AJW (third from left) and his household.



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