Wednesday, October 22, 2008

You're already halfway there........

Thanks for the contribution, Cowgirl:

You've already made the greatest stride you could in reaching your goal; you've committed! The biggest obstacle you have is to train prudently, but safely. Enough to get you to the half-marathon Finish Line comfortably (relatively speaking) and uninjured!

You might check and adopt one of the training regimens that suits your ability level, time availability, and lifestyle. If it's the HALF MARATHON 3-DAY/week (or 4-Day/week) program, start with number of weeks left 'til the race, and go forward to raceday. I'd suggest if your mileage per week is not as high as 20, go with 4-Day/week plan, as you'll have fewer long efforts, but "steel" yourself to the commitment (mentally and physically) of being out there 3 hours plus with more efforts prior to raceday.

All my best to you, athlete, and thanks for being in touch! Mark

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Back after a little sabattical........

Have been away from the blog, but time now to get back to it. Summer has been super, getting to see a lot of you athletes at various venues and races. As I've begun to reacquaint myself with the race circuit, have experienced 4 5K's since mid-June, and it's been great seeing many of you achieving goals you've not previously experienced. Working with a number of you through consultation and face-to-face interaction, I'm very proud of what you've accomplished, and more importantly, how you've embraced the sport with the RIGHT ATTITUDE.....a mindset of gratitude, humbleness, yet unwavering stick-to-itiveness.
I'm humbled by the interest many of you have shown in my return to the sport since my hip replacement last summer. It's the greatest feeling in the world to know I have your backing, and to say I'm grateful for where I've come this past year is a major understatement.
After working the 5K's down to a 20:30 at the Gusher Gallop May 17th, I took a trip to Colorado with my friends Bill and Debbie Weeks, to stay at the home of Victor and Susan Selenow in Buena Vista. Every day, we hiked or ran, and from their house, you have little choice but to head 'upward' glorious! I'm not an every-day runner anymore-much as I might like to be-but how could I pass this chance......
Therefore, I've had a few months of managing tight achilles and calves. With this condition, when acute the best approach is to lay off the roads a week or so, and if the effects have eased, break back to running avoiding at almost all costs HILLS and INTENSITY.
I raced the Bethany 8K and ran solidly, very pleased with a 34:30. It seems I picked up the mileage a little quickly again-a couple of big weeks thrown in there-and had a little relapse early August, triggered by an upbeat 10-miler. (I'm planning on running my first half-marathon post-hip latter year.) By mid-August I was back and ready to run the "Run with the Bulls" 5K with effort, but not all-out. Ran the mid-22's and most importantly, no after-effect from the race, and a week later, the heralded "Brookhaven Run" in Norman was upon us. Decided to try to run the 21's and see if the calves were healed, and in going 21:20, it felt great! I think we're back!
The lesson here is that there's always another race, another training run, another long one we can get much as it disappoints to have to lay off, or skip a particular event we've pointed towards, once we've made the comeback, it's clear the wait-you can even call it "sacrifice"-is more than worth it. One thing is crystal clear, and worth remembering: We've come to this sport to enhance our lives, and hopefully for the rest of our lives.
Happy running, athletes, and see you on the roads!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Morning, athletes!

Got a super report from the doc yesterday; both hips look great he said, even the other one (though not as "shiny" on the x-ray!) We laughed at his comment days after surgery last year: "It may not last your whole life, but you oughta get 40-45 years", to which I quickly shot back: "We're do I sign?" At 90-95, I'll gladly move on to 'Plan B!'
I'm grateful for all the well-wishes and compliments that have come my way in these 14 months since hip replacement, and for the ability to exhibit some resilience through this bit of adversity. We all see-and experience-opportunities to rise above adversity, both in and outside athletics. I hope my plight in some way lends some assistance to others going through the inevitable unexpected turns that life offers. After all, these "tests" are our chance to put our very own signature on the project.

Feel free to offer on my blog your own experiences of stick-to-itiveness, either personal or witnessed. I'll continue to share those I run across in my travels and experiences running and coaching. Again, they need not enter the realm of athletics...the same lessons can be found displayed in all aspects of life.
Extending to my friends out to conquer the BADWATER race next week (Marie Bartoletti of Pennsylvania and Chisholm Deupree from Oklahoma City) my admiration, and hoping nothing but great memories come your way while competing. Wishing you a "world-class" weekend, and look forward to seeing you on the roads of America!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

"To give less than your to sacrifice the gift"

This simple statement is credited to Steve Prefontaine, legendary American distance runner who left his mark-though dying in a car accident in his mid-20's-by an unprecedented will to get the most of himself every time he laced up his shoes. Winning races was a mere by-product of his real seek the best inside himself. This transcended his running, as he was a pioneer in the move to allow amateur athletes a stipend, as he himself-at the height of American distance running-was relegated to food stamps to continue his pursuit of excellence, and an eventual performance in the 1972 Munich Olympics.

I call attention to this statement, and the life of Steve Prefontaine, to spotlight the fact that we can all have impact in life, even if we're not a world-class runner-or "world-class" anything. When we conduct ourselves with dignity, treat others as we hope to be treated, and pursue whatever our passion-or current plight is-with all the diligence and stick-to-itiveness we can, we raise the caliber of everything and everyone around us. In fact, the entire world is enhanced.

Through this blog-and website I hope to share and exchange with others the tools, ideas, and approaches-mental and physical-that "raise the level" of your game. Please contribute as you like, and thanks for taking a look.

I want to thank my good friend Jill Beardsley (who orchestrated this blogsite.) Jill's husband, marathon legend Dick Beardsley, has opened my eyes numerous times with his never-say-die approach to adversity, and I'm proud to call him a great friend. I always look forward to our runs whenever we arrive in the same area code.

Thanks again, and I'll see you all on the roads......Mark

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