Beginner Running Group 14 November 2011

Hello Team!

We’ve got kit!!! We must be the best-looking running group out there!  I think we all enjoyed running to Runner’s Need last week and everyone seemed to go home with some sort of hydration system as well as clothes/shoes/trousers/etc.  So we’re ready to go!  Hydration needs vary wildly from athlete to athlete, but a general guideline is to try to drink 150ml every 15-20 minutes of exercise.  An easier way to think about that might be targeting 500ml of water (one standard-size bottle of water) for every hour of exercise.  These guidelines are for high intensity activity so most long distance runners (lower intensity exercise) don’t drink that much.  The guideline also needs to be adjusted for temperature/climate and each individual’s sweat-rate.  So, if you sweat a lot, drink a lot and the old adage about if you’re thirsty, you’re already dehydrated is true.  I can tell you that there is a 10:1 ratio in terms of hydration and performance.  If an athlete is 1-2% dehydrated (which is nothing – basically a glass of wine the night before can get you there), their performance suffers by 10-20%.  We aren’t so concerned about “performance”, but we are concerned about effort.  The same ratio applies – if you are 1-2% dehydrated, you are having to work 10-20% harder than someone not dehydrated.  Most of you will find that you don’t need water except for on your weekly long run.  Again, that is athlete-specific, but most of you will be fine not carrying water on your 45 and 35 minute runs.
This Thursday we will be running down into Hyde Park, along the Serpentine, then under Wellington Arch, into Green Park where we’ll finish at the Green Park tube station (Jubilee Line).  There is a large Starbucks close to the station.  Our schedule is 3 x 15 minute running intervals separated by walking breaks.  The run down to Hyde Park will have lots of street crossings so we’ll have some little breaks and we’ll have another nice break crossing over from Hyde to Green Park.  We’ll keep the pace slow so everyone can handle these longer intervals.  I will be encouraging you to start noticing who you like running beside.  Try to group yourselves up based on pace.  If you are one of our quicker runners, get in the front of the pack.  I know sometimes this is difficult because you’re in conversations and it’s difficult to switch around, but give it a try.  Also, make note of this route – with some little adjustments it could be a great route for your Tuesday runs.
I’ll send out a Lisbon update in the next few days.  I understand the flights are going up in price and the registration fee for the race increases if you sign up after 1 December.  As far as I know, only one of you has committed to the race – thank you Amy for taking the plunge!  I will reiterate that you CAN do this.  I understand that you don’t quite believe it yet – but you CAN do it.  Commit yourself to running regularly, particularly the long Thursday runs, and you’ll be ready.  You still have a couple of weeks before the Thursday runs become absolutely critical.  Beginning sometime around the 2nd week of December, if you are not able to regularly join us for the Thursday runs, a half-marathon in the spring is near impossible.  We are fine missing a Thursday run every now and then so please don’t worry if you’re traveling, or sick, or have a sick child, etc.  No worries – it happens.  We also adjust our schedule over the holidays as we are scattered all over the globe.  I’ll be in London for most of the holidays and am happy to meet up with whoever else is here.
For the next few weeks, you are doing the weekly long run, then two other runs if possible.  One of those runs should be 45 minutes (total exercise time).  Warm-up for 5 minutes then break down the remaining 40 minutes into whatever length intervals you want.  If you do a third run, it should be 35 minutes (total exercise time).  Same concept applies – 5 min warm-up, then break up the 30 minutes however you chose.  For now, run down to Hyde Park, or run in Regent’s Park or run along the canal.  Let me know when those routes get boring and I’ll give you some new ideas.
See you Thursday,