Sunday, August 31, 2008

More running reflections

I asked Robert if he could remember where I did my first runs...for some reason I was drawing a blank. My first runs were around St. Andrew's circle by the Country Club. I ran while the kids had their tennis clinics. It couldn't have been more than 2 miles (if that) and I had to walk most of the uphill portions. It's amazing how quickly running can improve in four short months.

I picked up a book about running today. There wasn't much new info, but there was one big nugget that stuck out. It talked about the fact that you can think of achieving cardio improvements about every 3-4 weeks, muscular improvements every 9-12 weeks, but tendons and ligaments can take a full 9-12 months to ratchet up. The authors contend that it's not at all surprising that folks like me end up with injuries a few months into a program. At that point we've made great strides in terms of cardio and muscle fitness, but the rest of our body can't keep up yet. This highlights the fact that I need to be smart in my choices in the next half year. I need to focus on setting a solid and healthy foundation for many years of running rather than jeopardizing that for short-term goals. Food for thought.

The book also proposes that it takes four weeks to establish a habit. Anyone can white-knuckle it through three weeks, but get through four and you have the makings of a new habit.