The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-378 – End of Season Contemplation with my Coach

 (Audio: link) audio:http://www.RunRunLive.com/PodcastEpisodes/epi4378.mp3]
Link epi4378.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks - http://www.marathonbq.com/qualify-for-the-boston-marathon-in-14-weeks/

 

Hello, and welcome to the RunRunLive Podcast episode 4-378, This is your dear friend Chris.  How is everything going?  I’m trying very hard to get back on my publishing schedule.  To get back in balance.  Not just because I believe consistency is a big part of quality in the product you consume here. 

I do appreciate your attention and I’m grossly aware of my duty!

I also need to keep writing to keep my own creative furnace fueled – which is why I started doing this in the first place – partly to help people, and myself, become better versions of themselves by sharing some of the tribal knowledge I’ve accumulated over the eons that I’ve been a practicing amateur endurance athlete.  But also to keep my communication skills tuned up – writing as well as reading this copy to you with as much gusto as I can recruit!

Well maybe not gusto, but at least enviable sincerity. 

Today we catch up with my coach, Jeff.  He and I talk through the ups and downs of my 2017 training season.  I like to use myself as a test subject to see what worked and what didn’t.

It’s always important to look back at your training, your successes and your failures, to see if you can learn anything.  You’re never too old to learn. 

We talked for a long time.  I’m going to edit it down to a reasonable size, but I’ll post the raw interview on the members feed.

In Section One we will talk about over-training.  How to realize when you’re getting over-trained, what the symptoms are and how to avoid it. 

In Section Two I’ll tell you 10 things you don’t know about me.  Like one of those Facebook posts. 

It’s cold up here in New England now.  We are in full on Winter.  We’ve had some good snow to make everything festive.  It’s below zero Fahrenheit this week. 

More importantly how is Buddy the old wonder dog?  Well, he just turned 14 years old.  Which is pretty damn old for a border collie. He’s and old man!  His hips don’t work so well and he’s deaf but he’s still mentally sharp. 

He gets skinnier every day.  Skinny old man.  The kids dress him in sweaters this time of year.  They use him as a blanket to stay warm when they’re watching TV.  He is very warm.  He is well loved.

He barks a lot.  Just like an old man, he wants to be heard and doesn’t have time for niceties.  He’ll stand in the front yard and bark at the woods at night.  Picture it as a 98 year old man in his underwear yelling at the coyotes to stay off his lawn. 

“…when I was a boy… we had real coyotes, not these namby pamby city coyotes they got now…”

I ran out of podcasts to listen to last week.  I’ve been changing phones a lot and have lost some of the regular ones I used to listen to.  Some house cleaning and some pruning.  Podcasts come and go.  It’s an industry now and the old amateurs like myself are the anomaly.

I opened the app and was looking around and went to see what Steve was doing over at Phedippidations.  The app sorted with oldest first, and I downloaded a couple of his marathon race reports from 2005.  The BayState Marathon and the Cape Cod Marathon.

Steve did a great job with those old podcasts.  Compelling and interesting stuff.  Really well produced.  Entertaining.  You can hear how much in love he is with his training and racing and the newness of the sport and the community. 

If you listen to the Baystate race episode you’ll hear my buddy Frank calling out Steve’s name at one of the first water stops, the one with the rock music playing.  That’s the same Frank who ironically qualified at Baystate with me a few weeks ago.  I wasn’t at the water stop in 2005.  I was running the race.  I think I ran both those races and came up short in both.  I think that year I ran a race in Maryland around Thanksgiving to finally get my qualification. 

That was a year and a half before I started podcasting but I would have been in the process of publishing my first book of running stories, The Mid-Packer’s Lament, (which is still available on Amazon). 

I love that about the podcasting thing.  Being able to capture a moment of time.  Being able to freeze the river of time and that person you were.  It’s a slice of self-awareness.  That Steve didn’t know what the future would hold.  That Chris didn’t know either.  In our hopeful narratives we saw that moment as a waypoint on an upward slope into the future. 

I think the one important take away for me is to understand that today, this race, this fitness, this Chris is a unique thing and may very well be as good as it gets. 

Think about that.  How would you run your race?  How would you live your life if today was as good as it gets? 

Seize the day.  Savor that day.  Today is all you have.  The past is a old movie spinning sepia images across time.  The future is nobody’s business.  Today is your day.  Use it.  Enjoy it.

On with the show.

I’ll remind you that the RunRunLive podcast is ad free and listener supported.  What does that mean? It means you don’t have to listen to me trying to sound sincere about Stamps.com or Audible.. (although, fyi, my MarathonBQ book is on audible) We do have a membership option where you can become a member and as a special thank you, you will get access to member’s only audio. There are book reviews, odd philosophical thoughts, zombie stories and I curate old episodes for you to listen to.  I recently added that guy who cut off is foot so he could keep training and my first call with Geoff Galloway.   “Curated” means I add some introductory comments and edit them up a bit.  So anyhow – become a member so I can keep paying my bills.

 

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access to Exclusive Members Only audio and articles.

  • Member only race reports, essays and other bits just for you!

Links are in the show notes and at RunRunLive.com

Become a member

Section one – The Symptoms of over-training - http://runrunlive.com/over-training-symptoms

Voices of reason – the conversation

Coach Jeff Kline

“Coach” as he is referred to by athletes has been training runners and triathletes globally for 20 years. The Coach is the founder and designer of Daily Fit Book. Although he is fully committed to the development and growth of DFB he will take on athletes of all levels that show a commitment and a strong desire to achieve new dreams and goals.

www.dailyfitbook@gmail.com

https://www.facebook.com/DailyFit22/

@dailyfitbook (twitter)

fitbook2 (instagram)

 

Prsfit@gmail.com

Section two – 10 things about me - http://runrunlive.com/a-little-bit-of-navel-gazing

Outro

Ok my friends you have wound down your training season to the end of 2017 and to the end of episode 4-378 of the RunRunLive Podcast.  Well done.

What have we got going in the new year?  Actually, big things! 

I decided I needed to set myself up with a running goal that was a challenge.  I signed up for the Burning River 100 in July and will chronicle my training for the race.  Yeah, I know I said I’d never do it, but you hear in my conversation with coach that turning point. 

Why not?  I’ve done a lot of stuff in my life but I don’t have a belt buckle.  And, there’s a good chance I’ll fail spectacularly either in my training or in the race itself.  If so are going to set BHAGs you have to have a good chance of failure.  That failure is the stuff that teaches you and forces you out of your comfort zone and forces you to grow.

So, calling all my ultra friends, I’m going to need advice, support and pacers!  Here’s your chance VeganRunningMom, DirtDawg, Cooker, Leadfoot and all the others.  Once in a lifetime opportunity to watch Chris Maddog Russell cry like a baby and soli himself.

In addition to this I’ll be running my 20th Boston marathon.  And, yes, I am qualified.  We’ll have to schedule something fun for that. 

Oh, and I committed to finishing my zombie novel. 

There are some personal and professional goals that you don’t care about that I’ll be chasing as well.  2018 is going to be epic!  (one way or the other)

But, that’s all in the future.  I’ll be wrapping up my 2017 season with the Groton Marathon.  I’ve got 5 folks who said they were running with me.  We’ll see who shows up because it’s going to be single-digit cold.  But, you know my theory…If you do something truly stupid people will show up.

On the first of the year I’ll run the Hangover Classic with Teresa and then jump into the Atlantic Ocean, because that’s what you do, right? 

And last but not least, I’m kicking off a 30 day Diet reboot on January first with my nutrition coach Rachel.  I’ll be logging my food and stats and blogging about it every day.  I’ll catch up with Rachel each week to review progress.  I’ll probably record those weekly chats and put them up on the podcast feed.  I thought it would be useful for people to hear my/our point of view on clean eating for endurance athletes. 

Think that’s enough?  Another one of my theories is when you have too much to do, schedule more stuff and it will sort itself out!

I’ve been listening to a meditation podcast on the train in the morning called the Meditation Minis podcast.  Episode 2 is about using meditation to clarify your vision, i.e figure out what you want to do.  This is a great exercise to create goals for the new year. 

She walks you into a meditative state.  Then brings you into the future so that you are looking back on your life.  And asks the simple question “What are three things that you wish you had done?” 

I found that context very helpful to sort out the things I’m working on and what is important and what will make a difference. 

Try it.  Don’t put off your dreams.  Put them down on paper and find a way to get them done in 2018.

And I’ll see you out there.

 

 

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks - http://www.marathonbq.com/qualify-for-the-boston-marathon-in-14-weeks/

Http://www.marathonbq.com

http://runrunlive.com/my-books

Direct download: epi4378.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:45pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-377 – Alex Runs Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc

 (Audio: link) audio:http://www.RunRunLive.com/PodcastEpisodes/epi4377.mp3]
Link epi4377.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks - http://www.marathonbq.com/qualify-for-the-boston-marathon-in-14-weeks/

 

Hello, and welcome to the RunRunLive Podcast episode 4-377, I will be Chris your host, thank you for joining me.  I am speaking with you the day after US Thanksgiving.  The weather has finally started to turn here and it is below freezing outside. 

Teresa and I went and ran the Ayer Fire Dept 5K on Thanksgiving morning.  I get to see many of my friends from the running club.  One of our members, Anthony was the original race director who created the race. 

I used to go up and run the Feaster 5 miler in Andover but this is so much more convenient.  The Feaster gets almost 10,000 runners and a bunch of local running celebrities show up to take pictures with McGilvary.  It’s a good race but Ayer is less hassle for us being the next town over. 

I can’t say I had a good race.  I can’t say I had a bad race either.  In terms of how I felt and the pace I ran it wasn’t my best effort, given how I actually tried to train for the race and am coming off a successful marathon campaign. But, on the other hand, being out on a cold, sunny morning with my daughter and all my friends – there’s really no complaining about that!

Today, we speak with friend of the show, Alex, about his epic adventure at the Ultra-trail du Mont Blanc at the end of the summer.  If you pay attention to the ultra world you may have heard of Leadville or Western States.  UTMB is the Western States of Europe, if you will.  It gets all the best international mountain and trail runners.  It’s over 100 miles long and has an insane amount of vertical. 

Alex, used to volunteer to edit the audio for the interviews on RunRunLive.  Another one of those Sympatico friendships I’ve been graced with through the podcast.  I think you’ll enjoy it. 

Remember a couple episodes back when I gave you my new Apple sauce recipe?  Well, I tried an excellent variation.  I’ve started putting overripe bananas and ripe peaches in with the apples. And I’ve discovered you don’t have to peel the apples either.  Just throw it all into an oven-safe dish, covered and bake it on low all day long and you get amazing, healthy apple sauce for your morning oatmeal. 

In section one of this episode I’ll talk a little about how I attempted to pivot from the marathon to the 5K and in section two I’ll write about running in the city of Boston. 

I finally got around to getting my flu shot.  I try to get in each fall because I think it’s important to do my part in keeping the herd healthy.  I usually don’t’ get sick since I started training regularly.  A number of people I know, work with and even my wife who is usually healthy as a horse came down with this nasty chest cold this fall that seemed to last for 2-3 weeks. 

I went down to the local drug store, CVS, where they give the shots on a Saturday.  It wasn’t a very productive day for me.  The dump was closed because of veterans’ day and I didn’t know it until I loaded up my truck and drove over there.  I found it impossible to get in for a haircut two weekends in a row due to some bizarre spike in the demand for haircuts locally.  But, I did manage to get the flu shot. 

While I was sitting there an old man came in and joined me.  It was veterans’ Day and he was wearing a WWII commemorative hat.  He told me that he enlisted in 1942 at the age of 17.  He was in Normandy 6 days after D-day.  He was stationed in Czechoslovakia.  Then he went to the Pacific theatre and was in the Philippines and Japan. 

He’d be about the same age as my Dad would be if he were still alive.  Local guy.  Grew up in the town.  Lived his life there.  Still there.  Getting his flu shot.  Imagine the changes he’s seen?

That was a couple weeks ago.  Today is thanksgiving.  I find myself thankful.  On with the show.

I’ll remind you that the RunRunLive podcast is ad free and listener supported.  What does that mean? It means you don’t have to listen to me trying to sound sincere about Stamps.com or Audible.. (although, fyi, my MarathonBQ book is on audible) We do have a membership option where you can become a member and as a special thank you, you will get access to member’s only audio. There are book reviews, odd philosophical thoughts, zombie stories and I curate old episodes for you to listen to.  I recently added that guy who cut off is foot so he could keep training and my first call with Geoff Galloway.   “Curated” means I add some introductory comments and edit them up a bit.  So anyhow – become a member so I can keep paying my bills.

 

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access to Exclusive Members Only audio and articles.

  • Member only race reports, essays and other bits just for you!

Links are in the show notes and at RunRunLive.com

Become a member

Section one – Pivoting from the Marathon to a 5K - http://runrunlive.com/pivoting-from-marathon-to-5k

Voices of reason – the conversation

Alex Cooke

Alex is 43 and hails from Birmingham in the UK. Like many of us, he started running in early middle age to improve his health, but quickly found benefits in multiple dimensions. He’s got a busy life, and uses running dreams to keep him motivated to train and live a bit cleaner. After [not quite] conquering the Boston marathon and falling in love with the European Alps on a family holiday, he set his sights on trail running and, specifically, the Ultra Trail Du Mont Blanc -  a 106 mile, 33,000 feet mountain race as his next goal. Three years after setting the goal, did the reality live up to the dream?

Twitter: @TrustCooker

Instagram: trustcooker

UTMB stats and videos: http://utmbmontblanc.com/en/live/runner/1811

Section two – Running in the City - http://runrunlive.com/running-in-the-city

Outro

Excellent job my friends, you have slipped, crawled and struggled through 30 hours of the RunRunLive podcast Episode 4-377. 

The intro for this podcast was written just around Thanksgiving.  Now it is 2 weeks later.  Apologies for the tardy publishing cadence.  My new gig in the city is very intense and time consuming.  I don’t have any place to record.  By the time I get to the weekend I have a full slate of other activities and no time to record either – I’m also fairly wrung out intellectually. 

But that’s not your problem!  It’s not a problem for me either.  I’ll figure it out.  I have spent these few weeks well and wisely.  I ran my turkey trot 5K and it was as struggle but I did ok.  I got to spend some time with my friends and Teresa. It’s a nice event to kick off the day. 

Last weekend I ran the 4.7 mile leg, leg 2, of the Mill Cities Relay.  I ran 7:30’s as I predicted but it was hard work and I was fairly sore on Monday of this week.  Basically I’m feeling the effects of a active fall racing season. 

Coach wants me to start training for Boston but I kind of want to take some time off and do something different.  I was looking at Comrades Marathon in June – but that’s probably outside my reach – as epic as it is.  I’ll figure something out. 

I’m so busy I find I’m falling into the ‘switching cost’ trap. This is what happens when you work on many important things in parallel.  Every time you go from focusing on one important thing to focusing on the next important thing you pay a penalty.  It takes your brain a certain period of time to transition out of the one thing and then refocus on the next. 

It’s like when you’re working on a project and you are deeply focused and the phone rings.  It’s important so you answer.  Now you’ve lost the flow of that project.

What ends up happening eventually, as you try to string more projects in parallel, is the time spent switching and absorbing the impact of the switch begins to outweigh the value of the thing you switched to.  They discovered this concept in the early computers.  Eventually the entire CPU is tied up switching tasks and nothing gets done. 

What do you do?  Unfortunately, the answer is to work longer and try to carve out appropriately large and specific chunks of time for important tasks.  You may find that the only time you can find is outside of work hours.  Or, you can say no.  You can identify those things that are not urgent but are important and make sure those get done.  Because those are the things that will pay off over the long run. 

For example, you are having to deal with customers because you don’t have enough qualified employees.  What should you do?  If you don’t deal with the customers, you’ll take a high profile hit for being unresponsive.  But, if you don’t focus on hiring and training you will never get out of the trap.

You’ll be tempted to try to do both.  Deal with customers and hire and train in the spare time.  What happens? You end up being mediocre at both.  As painful as it is you have to focus on the thing that will give you the long term win, not the thing standing in front of you screaming. 

It comes down to knowing what you’re trying to accomplish and aligning your tradeoffs with those strategic goals. 

Sounds strangely intellectual when I talk about it this way.  In reality it’s the chaos of daily life. 

I’m going to keep plugging along, doing the right thing, and I’ll see you out there.

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks - http://www.marathonbq.com/qualify-for-the-boston-marathon-in-14-weeks/

Http://www.marathonbq.com

http://runrunlive.com/my-books

Direct download: epi4377.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 5:15pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast - Interludes 2017 – Priorities

 (Audio: link) audio:http://www.RunRunLive.com/PodcastEpisodes/ Interludes2017-Priorities.mp3]
Link  Interludes2017-Priorities.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks - http://www.marathonbq.com/qualify-for-the-boston-marathon-in-14-weeks/

 

Hey Folks, This is Chris.  I am dropping you a quick note so that you can stop worrying about me! That’s right, you can stop checking the morges and the hospitals and the retirement homes.  I’m ok, I’m just busy and as much as I’m committed to producing the podcast, it is not, and you may be shocked to hear this, my highest priority!  It’s up there and I take consistency of delivery and quality seriously, but that should give you an idea of how tactically strapped I am.

Anyhow, I do have a half-written show for you coming and I will keep working on the fun scheduling and priority tetris that allows me to talk to you, but I beg for your patience.  I’m also feeling that we’re in a rut and I need to change the format in the new year.  It’s been a couple years so I’m willing to take suggestions for anything that you think we could do that would be useful, new and exciting in a RunRunLive Version 5. 

Also A quick note – I am running my personal festival of races called “The Groton Marathon” on December 31st in West Groton Massachusetts at 9:00AM if anyone wants to come up and join.  We have people show up who run all different distances at all different speeds.  Myself and some veterans jog the full 26.2 in 4-5 hours and we have some cheer. Shoot me a note at cyktrussell with any thoughts, comments, questions and suggestions.

And just for fun I’ll share a journal entry from a early morning train ride where I was trying to noodle out how to work my priorities to get everything done.  It’s a bit of navel gazing and has nothing to do with running, but hey, why not?

Scheduling for me is about priorities. On the one hand I think my priorities are good and normal.  I prioritize my career, the work that puts bread on my table, my family and my health.  Those are my drop dead items on my todo list.  Everything else is negotiable.  The challenge is when these top-of-list items crowd out the creative things; pursuits that I get a juice out of – a joie du vivre.

Career means work.  It means putting in the hours.  It means learning fast and acting faster.  It means having a change mindset and looking around corners.  It means having hard change conversations with people who’s support you need to be successful.  It means all these things and more.  I don’t just show up and hang off the back of the pack.  I set the pace and the tone and I lead.

Career is a daily heavy lifting that starts early, ends late and burns hot the mental torch.  Career is exhausting intellectually and emotionally.  Sometimes in a good way.  Sometimes in a long-term capacity building way that training always is. 

Those are the good days when you are building roads and changing lives.

The challenging days are when the hordes pour over the wall and daylight to dusk is spent swinging swords and thrusting pilum with your back up against the sortie gate.

Could walk away from the world of business and spend my days on the farm?  I think I could, but I don’t pine for it.  I’m not bewitched by some retirement fantasy where everything is unicorns and rainbows and candy.  That would kill me in short order.

What about Family?  Family is the rock upon which my church is built.  This foundation allows us to venture forth into the world with some sort of hearth secured.  It gives us comfort and purpose. 

This foundation, even with its human cracks and mold in the mortices gives us the confidence and strength to do battle. We know our flanks are held and solid.  The baggage train is safe and we can sortie out into the world with some peace of mind. 

And Health.  Health for me, in this context is both physical and mental. It takes the form of training for things that challenge me. The challenge me enough to make me grow.  That challenge me enough to keep me mobile and strong.  That allows me the physical confidence in life.

These three areas of my life are an essential balance, but they sometimes become tactical and rote.  They miss a purely creative, purely unbounded and joyous act of creation.  This is when I become unbalanced.  When the mind is not fed on the creative mana – that food of the goods.  Underfed, the creative mind shrinks back in upon itself, meager and miserly and protecting. 

And I find myself unbalanced.  It’s easy to say that you are too busy.  It’s easy to say that just for today you will push the plow and tomorrow you will learn or grow. But, urgency aside, it is a trap.  As we all know from experience, today turns into tomorrow and tomorrow plows into next year and the years folds into a life.

And that, whether we know it or not, is a prioritization decision. 

It is true that you can’t do everything.  No one can.  And your life will shift out of balance occasionally as you embrace change and move.  But, you can be aware of balance and priority.  You can do a lot. 

Balance is a combination of time, place and priority. It is an outgrowth of process.  You create the places and the times that support the process.  Any amount of planning, (placing things in places bounded by time), creates process and process is the key to unlock a treasure chest of productivity – and creativity.

Priority is tricky.  When one of your top three life areas expands to pull so much energy and time it erodes your ability to reach those life areas that are important but not urgent.

The question becomes “Is it important?”

Is it adding value to you and yours and ours?

If it is important then you will find the time in the cracks to get it done. 

The fruit hangs heavy on your trees.  The frost is coming. Find the time to harvest.  Find the time to prune.  Find the time to allow bounty. 

Find the time to live.

 

 

Direct download: Interludes2017-Priorities.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:27am EDT



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