Running Strong: The Missing Links

If you’ve ever created a training plan, you know that puzzle can contain quite a few links. Not all of them are necessary corner-pieces, but the more you add the bigger your picture and results will be.

Every race I’ve trained for has presented a new challenge – maybe I’ll aim for a PR, or a new distance, or a harder course, or Irun two  races in one day, or decide to run through rain and snow – and the opportunity to learn something about running strong.

This year I’ve added quite a few pieces to my puzzle, and now I can’t see the picture without them…

*Yoga has become a staple in my routine. I stretch, pose, breathe deeply, let my mind go and relax at least once a week. It does wonders for tight hip flexors, tight calves and legs you once thought were strong but start shaking in Horse or various lunges. I also have lululemon to thank for turning an interest into a passion!

*Strength Training may not be in the agenda consistently, but we’re developing a much better relationship! Trying out new things like TRX and CrossFit have totally woken my muscles up (and left them aching with Lactic Acid). It’s now something I choose to do at least once a week (hey, it’s a start).


The lululemon group – bright & early with some TRX gadgets.

It probably wouldn’t hurt to get back in a push-ups-every-morning habit either…anyone want to enforce that? Anyone??

*Speedwork & Long Runs are present even when I’m not training. They may not be as regimented or following a faster-longer schedule, but they make an appearance once a week and keep me strong for whatever comes up next!


One link that has been missing since our move to Colorado? Group Runs. Those of you who have been around for a while know that I loved every run with my Group in DC. We did a lot together, in and outside of running, and challenged each other to push limits. I even had one buddy, Kate, who got up with me at 5:00 a.m. almost every day so we weren’t out on those dark morning streets alone. I found out I could faster, farther, earlier, without a lot of sleep & sometimes wihtout any idea where we were going (we may have once crossed state lines without realizing it…).

I really miss that community, and have yet to make much of an effort to find one here that might do all those tricks. Once my marathon training ended, I realized that was a link that I didn’t want to do without. A hole in the puzzle that needed to be put back.

This week I have at least two groups I’ll be joining for different types of runs and new territory! I’m excitedly anxious to see what this Denver scene has to offer…


What pieces make up your Run-Strong puzzle? What links, if any, are missing?



Filed under about me, Exploring Colorado, learning, motivation, new things!, running, strength train too!, Yoga

16 responses to “Running Strong: The Missing Links

  1. I could definitely use more strength & stretching in my routine, but I am back to the gym and working on it now in the “off season” in the hopes of carrying it through to my new training plan(s) next year.

    Hope you can find a new group to love soon!

  2. See that’s why I adore my routine when I’m NOT training! I swim, bike, do yoga, strength train with a little running thrown in. As soon as I start a hardcore training plan all focus turns to running. I *REALLY* need to work on that next training cycle!

  3. Love your insight, as usual. After going to a yoga class last night for the 1st time in WAY TOO LONG, I realized just how tight my muscles are from running 3-4 days and week. It was a wake up call that I need to stretch more and I’m lucky the studio is down the street from my house = NO excuses. 🙂

    I want to try CrossFit as well – there’s a location really close to my house as well.

    Excited to hear about your experience with the new running groups.

  4. wecki77

    I feel I’m missing yoga. Stretching was always my favorite part of any exercise (sports or exercise). As much as I love stretching, I have never really joined yoga classes. Now, it becomes a money issue. I have videos but have yet to dig them out. Maybe that will be the plan for this weekend. Now to find the time…

  5. Elizabeth

    I’m definitely missing yoga. Or, really, any kind of “other” workout. But it’s mostly a time issue. I used to scoff at the magazine articles that said “squeeze a 20-30 minute workout into any part of your day!” thinking, who doesn’t have time for that?

    Me. I don’t.

  6. jen

    Great post! Now that I’m not in training mode, I’m incorporating weights, biking and more yoga back into my life and I love it! I’ve realized that I need to do more cross training in my next training schedule. I think I’m a happier person when I’m more balanced.

  7. i am so trying to get yoga into my week but just keep failing.
    finally doing more speed work and tempo runs – once a week with a group
    and i have been trying to get to boot camp twice a week

  8. Seriously, were we separated at birth? You are reading my mind. This is awesome. I cannot wait to hear how they are!

    I feel the SAME way about “what’s next” you run out of ideas. (get it, “run out” har har) 🙂

  9. i need to focus on cross training and strength training too!

  10. Everyone has been trying TRX! I want to find a local class!

  11. Let me know if you get a push-up enforcer. I’ll hop on board that wagon!

  12. mine has changed so much in this past year as well largely due to moving. I finally found some groups and I finally started doing yoga weekly and both have made me a better runner!

  13. I’m not sure what this “strength training” you’re referring to is, but I’m on board with everything else. 😉 Super jealous of your group run options…….

  14. Lee

    I definitely slack on the strong portion of the equation – especially when I’m training for a race. I need to figure out a way to incorporate more strength training into my life.

  15. runyogarepeat

    Yoga is a must, especially after longer runs.
    I should do speed workouts, but it’s harder to motivate myself to run faster than my normal pace and more painful. But I love running fast – especially sprinting at the end of a run, does that count as speedwork?

  16. That lululemon picture is so cute!

    I definitely need to do more strength training and core work, but it’s more work than fun for me, so I usually skip it. Oops!

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