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Sunday, August 10, 2014

Week 1: Foundation Building

A week in the life of an endurance runner... 8/3-8/9

First of all, I don't run every hour I wake up.  I just wish that I could.  Haha.  But the thing is, most people don't know what it takes to be an endurance runner, and it's not too much.  It's just building a habit for yourself.  It's a lifestyle that supports me and as I live my life, I take steps towards my goals.  Here's a recap of the runs I did during this past week.

Sunday:  8.67 miles at 6:56 min/mile average, speed work trading off 1 mile easy with 2 miles hard.  12.52 miles at 7:10 min/mile average, just sped up as I went on.
Monday:  Led a running group, ran 1.66 miles at a 10:52 min/mile.
Tuesday:  10.33 miles at 7:42 min/mile, speeding up as I went on.  8.63 miles at 9:50 min/mile running with a running group at Haw Ridge, just a fun run and miles!
Wednesday:  12.04 miles at 8:26 min/mile.  I was dehydrated and was running back from dropping my car off at the shop, so it wasn't exactly the most fun I've had while running.
Thursday:  16.43 miles at 7:17 min/mile speeding up as I ran.  Rested over 24 hours since Wednesday's run, so I felt good and it was a night run in a park, so really easy to run fast.
Friday:  0 miles because it's my absolute rest day.
Saturday:  21.33 miles at 8:07 min/mile doing a big loop.  First 6 miles were extra slow so I wouldn't run out of water or energy during the later part of the day.  8.05 miles at 6:51 min/mile at the park speeding up as I ran on but I stopped because I developed a blister that popped.  No fun, but hey, that's one reason to stop.
Total:  99.5 miles

My original plan for the week was 70, but apparently, my legs are stronger because Mondays and Fridays are my break days and I'm able to somewhat recover on those days.  I've talked to quite a few people and have been told that if I can, I should just add more miles every week so that I would be able to maximize however many miles I could do in 24 hours.  Eventually, I'm hoping that I'll get close to running 200 miles of running each week... but we'll see what happens, haha.

After each of these runs, I would make sure to do a full body stretch, which is important because I want my muscles to fully recover for the next run.  Thursdays, I also lead a fitness group so we do a little more, so that'll be my core workout day.  I'm hoping to incorporate more push ups, crunches, pull ups, calf raises, and squats to my workout, but we'll see what happens as I get closer to my goal.  First stop, 103.8 mile race in GA, the Georgia Jewel.  Going to see how well I can do that, and I've got 7 more weeks to train for it!  The most important thing I want to come out with from that race is the psychological strength... but it would be nice to get the course record too!

As for meals, it's rather simple.  Unfortunately, I only eat three times a day, and eat pretty simply.  Breakfast consists of a generous portion of rice, 6 eggs with the yolk warm and runny mixed with soy sauce, and natto on the rice.  Packed with carbs and protein, I want to make sure I start out the day great.  Lunch and dinner would most of the time be rice with chicken or tilapia with assorted vegetables, and once in a while pasta.  Once a week, I try to eat something bad so that I would be able to visit my grandparents as they don't exactly eat the healthiest and I end up sick to my stomach because their instant food just kills me... but yeah.  Try to eat healthy all the time.  I only drink water (or unsweet tea) so not much other than that.

Of course, being a little on the serious side, I'm always researching online for ways that I could improve my training, change my race plan, adjusting my race training schedule, nutrition research... but other than that, my life is pretty normal.  I also would randomly read manga (Japanese comics) that have motivational characters, or I would just go on youtube and look up motivational videos that would encourage me as I go through my training.

Since training only takes out a little over 12 hours a week (so far), it isn't too much of a bother, and doesn't really intrude on anything else that goes on.  As the training gets harder and the 12 turns into 20 or 30 hours a week, then it starts affecting the other portions of my life, but thus far, I've been able to balance everything out.  The thing is, if you really want to become better, you put time and effort in it.  It doesn't matter if it's running, schoolwork, a relationship, learning an instrument, if you really care about it and want to improve as much as you can, you have to sacrifice a little to do your best.  I think that it's easy for me to do that because I'm a pretty simple person.  If I want to become a better runner, I will whole-heartedly go for it, because I'm that kind of guy.  I go where my heart wants me to go, and I will relentlessly pursue it because it matters to me, and I will take all the necessary steps to make it happen.  Having a dream of being one of the top endurance runners in the world, I feel like I have what it takes.  All I need to do is pursue it.

Hope everyone enjoyed reading a little about this one week of Sho-ness!

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