Why Do You Run?

This is one the biggest questions associated with Running.  People who run know the answer, people who don’t run or have forgotten the benefits of running continually ask or wonder why people run.   The obvious answers are to eat whatever you want, to feel better, to lose weight, to sleep better…

One of the great benefits of running is destination travel.  It is so exciting to get with a coach, a group of runners and train for something challenging that requires a road trip.  Of course, today’s road trips can be in a car or on a plane.   These trips take you to great endurance events like marathons and half marathons in very interesting places.

One of the great ways to maintain focus on living an active lifestyle is to combine your vacations with your athletics endeavors.   To vacation with purpose is so rewarding.  You prepare for the trip through training with your new found running friends.  You take the direction from the coach.  You improve your health and fitness.  You get nervous.

With Performance based vacationing, you show up a few days early, gets settled in, go to the expo, find the right food options, run your race… then PARTY.  No better feeling than an accomplished marathon or half marathon followed up by a few days or a week of vacation.  This is when you really get to know the town and the best places to eat.  the appetite that follows a marathon can’t be beat.

How do you know which marathons or halfs to run?  Do your research.  Get to know the reviews and the companies that put on the marathons.   There are few great series of marathons that you can count on no matter where they are.

An example of one of these series is the Rock n Roll Marathon Series.  Brands like Rock n Roll have redefined the marathon experience.  They provide a solid experience , music and are in great locations.   Savannah Marathon and Half Marathon is a great example of a destination worth the Trip.  Rock n Roll Savannah Marathon is hosted by a great community driven by Robert Espinoza of Fleet Feet Savannah.  He cut his teeth and was a great influencer and force while at RunTex .

As you plan your running plans for the year and your vacation plans, consider combining the two for a vacation of a lifetime.


Champions are made in the off season

Off Season Running and Conditioning  Programs

If you are trying to up your game, get back in the game, develop the speed, strength and endurance you have always felt possible then the off season is the time to build the base and the proper routine.

When you are wanting to get in shape and maximize your quality of life, it is very important to train with the right program and group of runners.  Our programs are as follows:  Beginners (base conditioning)., Elementary and Middle School Athletes who want to develop their speed, agility and endurance that will last a lifetime., and Advanced Runner’s who want to train to increase their speed, endurance, agility and avoid or reverse injuries brought on by muscle imbalances and over training.   You can also have private lessons and coaching if you prefer.

Why is it so many runners don’t achieve their goal times?  Why are 50% off all runners injured half of the year ?

The answer…..their training habits.  Most  runners do too many miles and avoid doing the structured work that includes varied pace work, drills, calisthenics and cross training to maintain the muscle strength and conditioning over the entire body.   Adding this to your routine allows for healthy and proper running year around.

There is a misconception that this type of training is hard, unnecessary, and the root of injuries.  This is not the case.  However, it is critical to integrate this type of training gradually and in small doses.   It can be too hard, too much and can create injuries if you jump into quality workouts, or interval workouts you aren’t prepared for.

This program starts with small doses of very easy movements.  As the athlete gains strength and coordination they experience great improvements in their stride, efficiency and comfort.

We help runners experience a training program that eases them into training like the pro’s.  The benefit of this routine is to reduced injuries, increased efficiency and power.   The ultimate results are longer distances,  and faster times, with less effort.

This routine is good for beginning runners, runners who are getting back in shape, and runners who are currently running on a regular basis but avoiding this structured routine.   While one is adding it to their current mileage to supplement, the other is building the strength to be able to increase mileage with efficiency, comfort and less injuries.

I have structured the programs into groups that best represent where you are and what your goals and short term potential is.   It is best to train with other athletes who are in similar condition as you are.

The different levels are Beginners Running for those who are getting into shape for the first time,  Advanced Running  for folks getting back in shape or wanting to improve their running , Men 50+ who want to do a progressive and safe total body conditioning program, and finally the Youth Program.

The middle school program teaches and coaches our youth on how to get in shape and how to progress.  This conditioning helps their short term athletic goals, their academic ability, their health and wellness and most importantly, their long term ability to stay fit and ultimately healthy.

Beginners:  If you are looking to get started and you want a safe and strategic way to get on the right path.  Tuesday and Thursday Nights at 6:00 pm  and Saturday Mornings at 8 am at Ready To Run on Farwest Blvd.  Program Cost is $15 per session, $40 per month  for one day per week, $60 per month for two days per week, and $75 per month for three days a week.  Base Conditioning is the best way to enter the system.  This program is great for couples and families

Advanced Running:  If you are looking to improve your running or get running.   Tuesday and Thursday nights at 6:00 pm and Sunday Mornings at 8 am for a progressive endurance run that works on building Aerobic Capacity and Aerobic Power.  As a member of the program, You will also receive a schedule for your recovery  days and email access for questions.  I will also be available on Saturday’s at 2pm for questions and discussions on valuable running and health topics.   Program Cost is $15 per session, $40 per month for one workout per week, $60 per month for two workouts per week and $75 for three workouts per week.

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Youth Running and Conditioning Program:  If you want to set your child(ren) on the right path to be a better athlete for team, endurance or extreme sports.   Most importantly, an athlete for life.  The meeting time is Tuesday and Thursday  at 6:00 pm and Saturday at 8 am at Ready To Run on Farwest Blvd.  Program Cost is $75 per month.

One on One Coaching is also available.  If you prefer to get started in a private setting, you can receive private lessons that will analyze your style, footwear needs, training style, goal setting, food recommendations, weightloss goals, performance goals.   The cost is $100 for a single session, and $250 per month for a private weekly session.  To discuss, please email for an appointment at paul@paulcarrozza.com

For Registration or Questions, please email paul@paulcarrozza.com

You can register at:  http://mkt.com/btr

Born To Run Development Programs – All Levels

Born To Run – Running Developmental Programs

Why is it that 50% off runners spend 50% of the year injured?  Why is it so many runners don’t achieve their goal times?  I believe it is their training habits.  So many simply runners run too much with out varied paces, and the drills and aerobic cross training to maintain the muscle strength and conditioning in the entire body, which allows for healthy and proper running year around.

There is a misconception that this type of training is too hard, unnecessary, and the root of injuries.  This is not the case.  The entry into this type of training can be too hard, too much and create injuries if you jump into a speed workout, or an interval workout you aren’t prepared for.   What I am writing about is quite different.

This program starts with small doses of very easy movements.  As the athlete gains strength and coordination they experience great improvements in their stride, efficiency and comfort.

We help runners experience a training program that eases them into training like the pro’s.  The benefit is this routine is reduced injuries, increased efficiency and power which leads to longer distances, faster paces and faster times, with less effort.

This routine helps beginning runners, runners who are getting back in shape, runners who are currently running on a regular basis but avoiding this structured routine.   We have found that both ends of the spectrum can do this routine together.  While one is adding it to their current mileage to supplement, the other is building the strength to be able to increase mileage with efficiency, comfort and less injuries.

Adult – Base Conditioning:  Wednesday Night at 5:45 pm at the State Capitol and Saturday Morning at 8 am at Ready To Run on Farwest Blvd.  Program Cost is $15 per session, $60 per month.

Adult – Running Development:  Tuesday and Thursday night at 5:45 pm and Sunday Morning at 8 am for a progressive endurance run that works on building Aerobic Capacity and Aerobic Power.  As a member of the program, You will also receive a schedule for your recovery  days and email access for questions.  I will also be available on Saturday’s at 2pm for questions and discussions on valuable running and health topics.   Program Cost is $15 per session, $40 per month for one workout per week, $60 per month for two workouts per week and $75 for three workouts per week.

Children – Afterschool Running and Conditioning Program: Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 3:45 pm at Ready To Run on Farwest Blvd.  Program Cost is $10 per session, $25 per week or $80 per month

Men’s Program – Designed for Men 50 + who want to do the base conditioning necessary to maintain a high quality of life.  Tuesday and Thursday at 5:45 am.  Program cost is $15 per session and $40 per month for one workout a week and $60 for two workouts per week.

One on One Consulting is also available at a rate of $100/hour

For Registration or Questions, please email paul@paulcarrozza.com

Enrollment Period – Runner’s are buy viagra 100mg welcome to start when ready.  The meeting place is  at Ready to Run (3616 Farwest Blvd).  You Buy generic viagra pills can register at:  http://mkt.com/btr

2nd Annual Formula Run gets a Perfect Day

ForumlaRun5_Marek 2013The 2nd annual  Formula Run gets a picture perfect day and 1200 folks get to run the Circuit of the Americas and take the  turns like a pro.  This event had such a great vibe to it.  With a great finisher’s medal for all, a nice Tech Shirt full of color in F1 style, a fine line up of sponsors who did an amazing  job of providing a tasting of their fine products, the 100 volunteers there to support the Super Hero Kids from the Dell Children’s Blood and Cancer Center, it was an amazing event.

Karen Saenz, Wes Johnson Take Top Honors for Distance Challenge

The 2012-2013 Austin Fit Magazine Distance Challenge wrapped up last weekend at the Livestrong Marathon, closing the books the latest version of the long-standing series. Started by RunTex in the 90’s, the Distance Challenge in it’s current state features six events and allows participants an option of a Full Track or Half Track. According to Vance Taylor – who has volunteered his time the past two years to manage the series – more than 700 runners registered, a significant jump from last year.

Full Track
Karen Saenz, no stranger to the Austin road racing scene, led the female division wire to wire. Culminating with a marathon of 3:17 that was good enough for first place in her age group amongst the 4,000+ runners, Saenz took the female overall title by more than 12 minutes. She was so dominant over the series that her time is better than all but eight of the men’s full track competitors.

Taking second was 35-year-old Alisa Gardner, holding off a late-surging Ashley Johnson who gained five minutes in the final two races but wasn’t enough to overcome the near nine minute deficit she faced.

On the men’s side, Wesley Johnson turned in a solid marathon performance to stave off a challenge from Michael Budde. The 45-year-old Budde has competed in five of the last six Austin 26.2 races, but never broken the three hour barrier. Last weekend was his day as he recorded 2:58:09, seven seconds ahead of Johnson after trailing at the 20-mile mark.

Taking third was Taylor Collins, garnering his first Boston Qualifier time with a marathon PR of 3:01.

Half Track
Added a couple years ago to answer the call of people not wanting to run a full marathon, the half track offers two 10K’s, a 10-miler, and three half marathons. This year more than 300 individuals signed up, making it the largest participation since inception.

Cornelia Kamp and Jennifer Lowry were neck and neck for the entire series with the latter holding a 24 second lead going in to the final 13.1 miles. The 47-year-old Kamp was not to be denied, however, as she closed with a 1:38 – almost as fast as her time at the 3M Half. Lowry cross the finish line 57 seconds later to take third, and Audrey Herold rounded out the top three.

Herold owned a near five minute lead after stellar performances at the IBM 10K and Run for the Water but gave way to Kamp and Lowry at the challenging Decker Half and was never able to regain the lead.

In the men’s division, Michael Chavez used Decker and 3M to put six minutes on his next two competitors which turned out to be the difference maker. Masters stud Peter Huff went in to Livestrong with a one second lead over his third place competitor but left no doubt when he turned in a 1:21:53 last Sunday, outkicking Chavez by six seconds and besting eventual third place winner Tony Orozco.

Orozco actually held a 30 second lead at mile 10, but the steep climb up Enfield/15th did him in as Chavez and Huff sped by to secure their top finishes.

Awards are being distributed on Thursday, March 7 at El Mercado Restaurant on S. First St. All results are available at www.austindistancechallenge.com.

Distance Challenge Continues Sunday With Inaugural Rogue 30-K

The Rogue 30-K, which will be held this Sunday (January 27th), is a new race that’s been added to the  2012-13 Austin Fit Magazine Distance Challenge series, but it’s not a new distance. The 30-K distance (18.6 miles) has been part of the DC series for many years, most notably with the RunTex 30-K, which was held for seven years on the rural country roads in Buda.

But after the RunTex 30-K disappeared from the Distance Challenge in ’05, the distance and its venues have been spotty. The last 30-K was five years ago and for a couple years the RunTex 20-miler took it’s place. An out-back race in Georgetown on similar country roads, the event featured a 10-miler but was dropped in ’10. Two years later, the Distance Challenge is back up to full capacity with six.

The Rogue race is the fifth of the six races with the big enchilada—the Livestrong Marathon and Half Marathon—coming up on February 17th.

Coming two weeks after the 3M Half Marathon and three weeks prior to Livestrong, the Rogue 30-K and accompanying 10-K will start and finish at Cedar Park High School (2150 Cypress Creed Road in Cedar Park). The 30-K will start first at 7 a.m.; the 10-K will begin at 7:20.

Both races will be held on loop courses and neither course is exceptionally hilly. Says Danny Spoonts, who measured and certified both courses: “I would characterize the 30-K course as relatively flat with some hills. There are a lot of tight turns, but since it’s such a long race the turns shouldn’t be a problem. The first 3-4 miles of both courses are almost entirely flat and since that’s the first three miles of the 10-K course, that race is really flat. From miles 8-10, there are some uphills, but none of them are very difficult. Certainly not as tough as the hills on the Decker course or even Livestrong. So I think it’s a fair course with some rolling hills that really shouldn’t be much of a problem.”

The size of the fields shouldn’t be much of a problem. Ruth England of Rogue expects about 500 runners in the 30-K and another 400 in the 10-K which is sold out.

There is still time to enter the 30-K. Packet pick and registration will be held Friday (10-7) and Saturday (10-6) at both locations of Rogue Running. The downtown location is at 500 San Marcos Street and the Cedar Park store is 2800 East Whitestone Blvd.

The weather for Sunday morning should be ideal with temps in the mid-40s.

Cheptoo, Kelly Williamson Dominate 3M Half

Mid-winter racing weather in the ATX is notoriously fickle. Especially for the 3M Half Marathon, the crème de la crème of winter races, which either has great racing weather or rotten.

But on Sunday morning, the confluence of chilly temps, overcast conditions and a howling north wind made for the Perfect Storm. Temps at the start outside the Gateway Shopping Center were in the high 30s, but once the race began and the pace picked up, the brisk tailwind provided a lift for the 6300 runners.

Quickly establishing themselves at the front of the pack, on the smoking fast north-to-south course were 39-year-old Sammy Cheptoo of San Antonio and 25-year-old Chass Armstrong of Austin. Armstrong, who is from Boerne, went to school at Trinity University in San Antonio and was well aware of the Kenyan.

“He’s a very strong runner,” said Armstrong who has been dealing with a chronic anemic problem.

The two ran side by side for the first five miles but on Shoal Creek, Cheptoo lowered the boom with a 4:40 mile and left Armstrong to fend for himself.

“Sammy’s tough and once he threw in that big move, I just couldn’t get back up with him,” said Armstrong who would finish second in 1:06:54 to Cheptoo’s winning time of 1:06:05. Jared Carson of Smyrna, Georgia was third in 1:07:02 and Paul Morris, a former Columbia University star who now lives in Austin, was fourth in 1:07:34. Jeremy Daum of San Antonio was fifth in 1:08:35. Defending champ Scott Rantall was ninth in 1:10:35.

Armstrong was mildly disappointed he didn’t better his PR of 1:06:46 which he set three years ago in San Antonio. “I came close to it,” said Armstrong,” but I really only had four solid weeks of training under my belt. Right now, I’m just excited about going into my 2013 season healthy.” Up next for Armstrong is the Livestrong Austin Half, the Statesman 10,000 and then a few 5000s on the track.

Kelly Williamson knows what’s in her immediate future: More triathlons. The 35-year-old pro from Austin easily defended her 3M title on Sunday, but her winning time of 1:16:19 was much slower than her PR from last year of 1:14:42.

Williamson and her husband-domestique-coach Derick Williamson spent the Christmas and New Year holidays back in her native Indiana. But the weather was so bad and there was so much snow, “I barely trained at all,” she said. “I don’t want to make excuses, but I’m just not as fit as I was last year at this time.”
She proved to be fit enough on Sunday as Williamson took the pace out with a series of miles between 5:40 and 5:45 which opened up a gap between her and Amy Shackelford of San Antonio and Kit Hoang of Flower Mound.

“I knew I wasn’t ready to run sub-1:15,” said Williamson who will do her first triathlon of the year in Panama in three weeks, “so I wanted to run under control.”

Williamson was able to hold onto her 5:45 pace through about 10 miles, but then the tough  11th and 12th miles took their toll. Just for this year, the course veered east up Dean Keeton up a test of character and then headed south on Red River for a difficult series of ups and downs on Red River before the final climb back to the Bob Bullock Museum off MLK. Next year the course will return to a more friendly final three miles, but the final hilly two miles certainly slowed times this year.

“Those last couple of miles kicked my ass,” said Williamson who lost about 45 seconds in the final three miles. “I was running as hard as I could, but they sucked the life out of me.”

Even so, said Williamson, “I was happy with how I ran. You can’t always run a race in your best shape—and I wasn’t—but I was glad I could compete and run solid.” Williamson, who is one of the best runners in the pro triathlete ranks, will probably run just one other race this spring, possibly a half marathon in The Woodlands in March.

Following Williamson to the finish, were Shackleford who finished in 1:17:06 and Hoan in 1:19. Lauren Barrett of Dallas was fourth in 1:19:05 and Ashley Johnson of Dallas was fifth in 1:19:50.

The masters were led by Jose Garcia of Richardson. The 40-year-old ran 1:17:45 to beat out Michael Budde, 45, of Cedar Park who ran a brilliant 1:18:35. Phil Oldham, 45, of Lincoln, Vermont was third in 1:21:06.

The old guys were paced by 51-year-old Scott McIntyre who ran a solid 1:21:39 with the amazing 56-year-old Greg Baxter next in1:23:20 (when is this guy gonna slow down?) and James Potts of Mesa, Arizona third in 1:23:52.

The really old guys were dominated by 60-year-old Doug Pautz of Blanco who ran a super 1:29:29. Charles Will, 61, of Strausberg, Pennsylvania was second in 1:31:28 and 61-year-old John La Claire was third in 1:31:42.

Jennifer Fisher, 45, led the masterly women with a fine clocking of 1:24:28. Amanda Marks, 44, of Lafeyette, Colorado was second in 1:25:57 and 47-year-old Jamie Patterson was third in 1:26:10.

The top 50-year-old on the morning was 51-year-old Audrey Herold who ran 1:38:51.

The 3M Half was the fifth of seven races in the Austin Fit Magazine Distance Challenge Series. Next up is the Rogue 30-K on January 27th.

Beginner’s Corner: Beating the Blues

It happens to all of us sooner or later. Especially newbies. The excitement of starting a running program has begun to wear off and all of a sudden, you feel tired and bored with running. Every time you even think about going for a run, you come up with plenty of  reasons not to go.

The alarm goes off and instead of hopping out of bed, you roll over. Or you come home from a long day at work and instead of a rejuvenating run, you grab a beer and head for the TV for Seinfeld reruns.

Sound familiar? It should. The motivation to run is something that comes…and goes. It could be seasonal (it’s especially tough in the summer) or you’re just plain tuckered out. Or, you feel stressed by the job or the screaming kids at home. It’s hot and humid and some days even a short run feels unbearable some days. Or maybe you’re just bored silly staring straight ahead day after day on the treadmill.

Whatever it is (or isn’t) staying motivated to run 12 months a year is tough. Maybe even impossible. Beginners and experienced runners all lose their mojo at some point.

The key is recapturing it so you can keep going and improve. And the key to recapturing that motivation, is to make changes in your running. It doesn’t matter what you change as much as simply making a change.

Switch your goals, plan for new ones. Instead of training for a marathon, set your sights on getting faster in a 5-K. Add more speed days. Reduce the length of your long runs or go much longer. Or substitute a strength training workout in the gym for a hill day.

Maybe you need to add an extra rest day to your schedule. Start taking a yoga or Pilates class. Maybe add a spinning class or try pool running. Or find new running routes around town. Possibly, you need to hook up with a different training group and meet new training partners. Run at a different time of day. Make plans to go to a new race in a city you’ve always wanted to visit.

There’s all sorts of solutions to break the ho-hum routine of running. You may not need to make major changes, but some change is good to shake up the routine.

Here are some tips that will help you stir the mix and get you fired up again about running this summer:

O Develop new training routes. Too many of us stick with the same roads. Even the Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail, the Scenic loop or Speedway gets old after awhile. Seek out a new course in a different part of town—even if it means driving. A change of scenery can make all the difference.

O Make new running friends. Join a different training group to do long runs or speed work. Or do different workouts with your regular training partners. If you only do long runs together, try just doing shorter, easier runs with your group. Or meet at the track once a week.

O Run earlier or later. If you’re a morning runner, switch to the evening. Or vice versa. If you can’t make such a radical switch, run a half hour earlier or later. Or go for a noon run, rather than eating lunch.

O Replay great movies in your head. What’s your favorite? Spinal Tap or To Kill A Mockingbird? It doesn’t matter. While running, entertain yourself by replaying the classic scenes in your head. Or replay your life. Pick a year and rehash everything (no matter how minor) that went on, but stick with that year.

O Buy new shoes or a new running outfit. A simple investment in new running gear might be just what you need to get excited about running again.

O Sign up for a new class. Learn how yoga, Pilates or kick boxing. If Tai Chi looks interesting, give a try. Ever tried deep-water running? Go for it. Can’t swim? It’s about time you learned.

O Leave your watch or GPS at home. Don’t time your run. Just run in any direction your feet take you and for any length of time which feels reasonable. Be spontaneous.

O Take five. If you’re still having a difficult time finding the motivation to get out the door, tell yourself you’ll only run for 10 minutes. Usually after just a few minutes of running, you’ll forget all about it and keep going.

Sometimes that’s all it takes to get a new ‘tude about running. Change your routine, make new goals, take a class and you’ll be back to your old self in no time.

If not, it might be time to take a break from running. That’s fine to take a week or two off. That’s usually all it takes to find your inner mojo again.

Beginner’s Corner: Why You Should Start A Walking Program Today

If you’re considering beginning a walking program, there is no better time to start than right now. The weather is still relatively cool (but it’s going to get hotter) and it’s easy to begin walking right now. A good walking program doesn’t take the time that a running program takes. Instead, a consistent walking program of no more than 30 minutes three or four times a week will have a significant impact on your health and lifestyle. That is, it will improve it. Especially if you have been mostly sedentary until now.

Certainly, one of the best reasons to begin walking is a simple one: You want to lose weight. Make no mistake about it, walking will help you lose those unwanted extra pounds. But you must make a commitment to a regular walking program. Nothing less will do.

Walking is easy, time efficient and if done with the proper consistency three or four times a week, you will lose weight. Get going.

Here’s why:

1. Walking burns calories. Any physical activity will, but walking burns more calories than comparable activities such as swimming, golf (using a cart) or cycling. A good example. A 150-pound adult who can walk a mile in 12-13 minutes will burn approximately 5-800 calories an hour.

2. A consistent walking program will increase your metabolic rate. If you walk three or four time a week for at least 30 minutes at a time, you will raise your body’s metabolic rate. This is a good thing because the increase in metabolism will last for several hours after you’ve finished walking. What this means is you will continue to burn calories at a faster rate even if you are just watching TV.

3. Walking is a natural appetite suppressant. Even though you’ll be raising your metabolic rate by walking, walking increases the level of a hormone that inhibits hunger. Walking also increases levels of adrenaline that help to mobilize fat from the fat cells where it is burned for energy.

4. Walking speeds up intestinal transit time. Walking (and other forms of aerobic exercise) causes food to spend less time in the stomach and intestines which means there’s less time for calories to be absorbed and stored as fat.

5. Walking builds muscles. A regular walking program will increase the ratio of muscle weight to overall body weight. Since a pound of muscle is smaller and more compact than a pound of fat, you will look leaner. And feel better.

6. Walking increases self-confidence. A  healthier, happier you will radiate a glow of fitness and overall well-being. Committed walkers feel better about themselves because they are healthier and less likely to overeat.

7. Walking is social. A vigorous 30-minute walk on the Lady Bird Lake Trail with a close friend is a great way to catch up and socialize. Maintaining a conversation is also the perfect test to check on your walking speed. If you’re out of breath and having trouble keeping up your end of the conversation, slow down. You should be able to maintain your conversational pace without feeling winded.

Get going.

Beginner’s Corner: 10 Ways To Avoid Injuries This Summer


Injuries are an unfortunate part of the running life. They just are. Either because of training errors, poor biomechanics, improper shoe selection and numerous other variables, nearly every runner gets injured at one time or another.

Fortunately, most of the common running injuries that plague runners are minor—and mostly avoidable. Obviously, prevention is the best way to go either by eliminating the causes or by listening to the body’s warning signs. Here are 10 ways you can reduce the chances of getting injured this summer:


  • Walk in, walk out.



    Start every run with a few minutes of walking. And finish that way too. This will allow your muscles to warm up before the run and cool down following it. When you start the actual running, start slowly and gradually ease your way into the run. Hold yourself back for the first 5-10 minutes and eventually you will naturally find your pace.




  • Progress slowly.



    When you feel it’s time to boost your training, only add small amounts of mileage, speed training or hills. Don’t add more than five miles a week or five minutes of speedwork or more than an extra one or two sets of hills. Allow your body the time it needs to gradually adapt to the added load and stress.




  • Don’t try to make up missed workouts.



    If you should happen to miss a scheduled key workout (such as a long run), it’s not a big deal. Let it go and don’t try to make it up the next day. If you do try to squeeze a key workout in that you’ve missed, it will mess up your entire schedule and force you to run hard too many days in a row. Missing one workout—even a key one—isn’t going to hurt you in the long run. Trying to squeeze it into a crowded schedule, could hurt you




  • Go soft once or twice a week.




    If almost all of your running is on roads, seek out a trail or grass surface for at least a couple of easy runs every week. Doing so, will give your legs (and head) a much needed break. We’re lucky: We have great trails and parks in Austin for soft running. Once Zilker Park reopens, its grass fields are also ideal for recovery runs.




  • When in doubt, sit out.



    When a minor strain, tenderness or muscle soreness crops up or you can’t run without limping even just a little, pass on the scheduled workout. Instead, go for a walk or do some form of cross-training. Better to rest a tender area now, rather than push it and pay the consequences later.
  • R&R all year.



    Take at least one rest day per week, but also plan for one easy week of light running per month and one easy month per year. Summer is the perfect time to give yourself a deserved break. Ease off on the throttle and give your body a chance to bounce back.




  • Stretch after running.



    There shouldn’t be any debate whether you should stretch or when you stretch. Don’t bother stretching cold muscles before you run; stretch within 10 minutes after each and every run.




  • Ice, ice, ice.



    Whenever any muscle or tendon is tender to the touch after running, ice it. Cool the inflamed muscle by applying ice, frotzen peas or a commercial ice pack. Never heat an injured or sore muscle after running.


  • Monitor shoe wear.



    Obviously, you should wear a high quality pair of running shoes whenever you run and not any other type of athletic shoes. Also monitor the amount of wear you have on your shoes. Even the best running shoes will wear out eventually and lose its ability to cushion and protect your feet. How do you know? Whenever an easy run results in abnormal soreness, is a good time to check your shoes for wear. A good pair of shoes will last anywhere from 350 to 500 miles. It’s better to change to a new pair of shoes too early, rather than too late.




  • Never run through pain.



    Never. Whoever said no pain, no gain is undoutebdly chronically injured. Pain is your body’s way of telling you something is wrong. Pain should be respected. If there is pain, stop running. Always err on the side of caution.