Thursday, May 21, 2009

Next Week We Start Running!

I’m very excited to get started with the 2009 running group next week!

As an overview, we’re going to start slow and easy, and develop our cardiovascular systems over time.

For some, you’ll combine slow jogging and walking. Others may jog for the entire duration of our sessions. Always remember, it doesn’t matter where you are when we start – You Will Improve!

Some may have been active longer than others recently. All that matters is that we are improving, individually - this group is designed to be a structure way to get additional cardiovascular exercise in each week, and if you want to do a 5K, you’ll be ready in a couple of months.

If you want to then work toward a 10K, you’ll be ready a couple of months after the 5K. And of course those who want to continue on with a half marathon and then the full Flying Pig marathon next May will have the opportunity.

Things to keep in mind:
  1. If you have a history of foot, ankle, knee or back pain, please let your doctor know what you are doing. We’re going to train in a way that minimizes pre-existing injury and that starts with speaking to your doctor (if appropriate). If at any time something hurts, stop immediately and let Leah and me know.
  2. Go at your own pace. You’ve heard me say this before, but always remember to go at a pace that is comfortable for you. Slower is always better in preparing for long distance cardiovascular exercise or running! If you go too hard at the start, often you have too little energy to make it to the end.
  3. Get fitted for very good running shoes! You don’t have to go out tonight, but within the next 2 weeks you’ll need to have a pair of running shoes that are dedicated for running alone. Go to Bob Ronckers and have them fit your foot. Every foot is unique and Bob Roncker’s Running Spot will ensure you get the proper footwear. I have a $10 off coupon for you – just ask me or Leah for the coupon. Proper footwear is critical!
  4. You’ll need a sports watch. On Tuesdays and Thursdays we’ll train for a period of time. And since everyone is going at their own pace, you’ll need a watch to tell you when it’s time to head back in. To start we’ll be going for 20 minutes. When you're close to the 10 minute mark, it’ll be time for you to retrace your steps back to your starting location. All you'll need to spend is $10. Click here for sports watch options at Target!

For those in Cincinnati, we’ll be meeting at Crossroads Church at 5:30am on Tuesdays and Thursdays for an individualized-paced combination of walking/jogging or easy jog for a given time period.

Then on Saturday mornings we’ll meet at the HealthStyle Fitness Studio at 7am for a distance walk/jog or run. And, each week we’ll slowly progress and build upon the previous week. In the first few weeks of training, plan on 20 – 30 minutes of training time for each session.

If you cannot participate in Tue/Thu/Sat group session, you can follow the plan on your own. Each week I will be emailing the training routine to everyone in the group – so you can follow it on your own or join us for any of the group sessions as your schedule allows.

Training Schedule – Week One

Tuesday - Run (or walk/jog) 20 min

Thursday - Run (or walk/jog) 20 min

Saturday - 2 miles (walk/jog)

Sunday - Rest

Additional Notes of Importance:

  • Drink plenty of water prior to starting.
  • By alternating walking and running from the beginning, you speed recovery without losing any of the endurance effect of a long run. Start with jogging one to two minutes and walking two to three minutes. As your cardiovascular fitness increases you can adjust your run/walk ratio to running 5 minutes/walking one minute. You WILL improve using this system!
  • Be sure to do the running portion slow enough at the beginning of every run (especially the longer runs) so that you'll feel tired but strong at the end. The conservatism will allow you to recover faster.
  • If you body needs a break from “pounding on the pavement” you can substitute non-impact cardio exercise, like an elliptical machine or biking, as needed.
  • Stay conversational on all of your training sessions for now. This means that you should be exerting yourself at a low enough level that you could talk. It's okay to take deep breaths between sentences, but you don't want to "huff and puff" between every word.
  • As the runs get longer, be sure to keep your blood sugar boosted by consuming a meal replacement shake (or equivalent) about an hour before exercise. Drink water continuously before and during exercise and with all food.

Above all, be a smart runner...and have fun!!

Your friend in fitness,

Brian Calkins

HealthStyle Fitness, Inc. 4325 Red Bank Rd Cincinnati, OH 45227 513-407-4665, x-105

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Are You Ready to Run?

The Flying Pig Marathon really did a number on me, and I didn't even run the 26.2 miles last Sunday.

But, I did train with an incredible group for almost a year in preparation for it.

This is a group where we started running very short distances, and built up over a year to being able to complete a full marathon.

And I was SO close to doing the marathon.

But I violated my own training philosophy. In one short 5 day span I just did too much in too short of time, in order to accommodate an important family vacation.

It was a valuable lesson. Stick with the principles of science, how the body best responds to progressive overload! But, I have no regrets, I grew out of the experience. I'm smarter and wiser. And, I'm way more fit than I was a year ago.

Seriously, how many people can say that they've run 21 miles during a single exercise session? ;)

So, instead of running, I excitedly watched the joy of each of the running group members achieve an amazing milestone that they'll carry with them for the remainder of their lives.

And in that process, I became even more inspired and recommitted to complete my own marathon.

May 2, 2010 will be my day!

And, I'm inviting you to join me.

Before we get into the details of how you can join our next running group, here are a few running benefits to entice you to consider making a similar commitment.

Benefits of Running:

1. Running Makes You Feel Good. Ask any long time runner and they often refer to the "runner's high" they feel during and after their exercise of choice. Runners will tell you that they have a significantly clearer mind, as well as a significant reduction in stress, through running.

2. Running Allows for Good Heart Health & Great Fitness. Running, or any cardiovascular exercise for that matter, keeps your heart healthy by reducing plaque buildup in the arteries. As you become increasingly fit, the quantity of blood that your heart pump with each beat goes up substantially, while reducing the number of times your heart needs to pump per minute. Having a stronger, more efficient heart allows for better nutrient and oxygen delivery to all of the cells of your body, giving you significantly more energy and better health.

3. Running Leads to Weight Loss. Running speeds up metabolism and allows you to burn significant calories. In addition, many runners report that their appetite dwindles for a period of time post exercise. And although resistance training and quality nutrition are critical for optimal health and body weight, the functional caloric requirement of consistent running is substantial.

4. Running Enhances Self Esteem. Along with the benefits of feeling and looking good, runners often report higher levels of confidence and self esteem. Those who set goals for achieving a 5K or 10K, half or full marathon get a tremendous feeling of achievement as they cross the finish line. The synergistic accumulation of all the benefits of running allow for a sense of considerable self-satisfaction.

5. Running Gives You a Sense of Connection. Whether you have a running partner, use a group training program, or just enjoy saying hello to your neighbors as you run past, the nature of running is one of human connection. All you have to do is attend a running event to watch the support of fellow runners and onlookers to get a real sense of how running allows you to feel a part of the community.

If you've ever wanted to train for a 5K, 10K, half or full marathon, the opportunity is here. Contrary to what you may believe at this moment, it's not as insurmountable as you think. With the proper guidance and small weekly progressions, you can achieve any distance up to a full 26.2 miles. Our next running group begins on May 25th!

For more information on joining these first time runners,

click here!

Have an great Tuesday!

Your friend in fitness,

Brian Calkins

HealthStyle Fitness, Inc. 4325 Red Bank Rd Cincinnati, OH 45227 513-407-4665, x-105

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


my hero:

So, how are you feeling today, marathoner??

I imagine you’re feeling a mixture of a tremendous elation in completing a grueling marathon, and some fatigue, muscle soreness and joint pain.

Over the coming days, schedule in 20 – 30 minutes of continuous light aerobic activity, like a brisk walk or some easy ellipticaling each day until the soreness is gone.

In terms of delayed onset muscle soreness, tonight you’ll feel it more than earlier today, and tomorrow may be the peak of your discomfort. By Thursday it’ll start improving. The more easy movement you get in, the sooner you’ll feel better.

And boy, was I ever excited to see you during the various stages of the marathon yesterday, and of course at the end. You all are my hero’s!! Truly.

I realize it may be too early for some on you to think about, but I’ve heard from several people about what their next event is going to be.

Whatever it is, is fine. I’ve heard some are going to run another marathon, some will be doing an upcoming Half, others are unsure at this point.

Many of you have expressed an interested in keeping our running structure going. I’m all for that!!!

In fact, it’s SO MUCH EASIER to continue training, than it is to cease training and then start back up from a less conditioned standpoint. My guess is that you've never been more fit than you are RIGHT NOW!

My goal is to complete the Columbus Half faster than I did last year.

I go see my doc today at 2:30 to see how my healing has progressed. I did end up running almost 2 consecutive miles yesterday (by accident), and felt great!

So, please reply to this email if you’d like to continue our training structure of Tue/Thurs/Saturday morning, or some version thereof.

In the meantime, savor the incredible day you had yesterday!! I'm super proud of you!

And don’t forget to move, move, move!! Easy movement.

Talk with you soon!!

Your friend in fitness,

Brian Calkins

HealthStyle Fitness, Inc. 4325 Red Bank Rd Cincinnati, OH 45227 513-407-4665, x-105