I seem to find myself traveling a lot on the weekends – between hockey and baseball, we are all over the place. Not to mention over the holidays, spring break, and summer, it can be hard to keep your training consistent when on the road. For those of you who travel for work, I imagine it’s even more difficult. With some organization and planning, it is possible to mainintain your training while traveling.
Race goal—-whether or not we like to admit it, we all have a goal in mind for an upcoming race. Whether we want to set a PR (personal record), achieve a certain time, beat our friend (or husband…:) or even if we say we are ‘doing it for fun’, these are all goals. It’s wonderful to have a goal, whatever it might be, for the obvious reason that it helps us stay motivated! Want to beat your husband at a race? Well you’d better get out in the rain and get your track work in. Want to beat your time from last year? Get up early and train before your kids are up for the day. Want to go out and have a fun race? You’d better spend the time in the pool or on the road so that it CAN be fun. Going into a race undertrained is no fun at all.
My son plays hockey and in Charleston, that’s rare. So, the fellow hockey families become a very close knit group. For 2 years, 2 nights a week us hockey moms sat around the rink watching practice, talking about our daily stresses – mainly, how to fit everything in our busy days. So when the season began this August, I decided to change things up. I started a “Hockey Mom Bootcamp”. We meet upstairs at the rink while the boys practice for an hour of a fun, butt kicking workout.
We all know we’re getting older. As they say, it’s better than the alternative…;-). However, what does that really mean to the aging athlete. Whether you’re training for a race or working out to enjoy the rat-race of life, we need to change our ways as we get older. When I was in my 20’s I could simply run 3 days a week, maybe throw in a day of upper body workout and an ab or two and be fine. No problem running, no problems with injury. Into my 30’s I started to realize that maybe I had to do a little more to stay healthy. I learned that starting in our 20’s we begin to lose muscle mass and so to stay strong and toned, I needed to incorporate strength training as part of my regular routine. Wait, I need to lift weight for my legs? No way, I run, I’m fine…Yeah right. Strength training is important for upper AND lower body, including our core (new buzz word, we no longer say ‘abs’…so passé). This new attitude worked fine for the most part. I was able to stay toned, workout, race occasionally, and stay injury free. Yippee! After the birth of my second daughter in my mid 30’s I realized that I also needed to include consistent cross training to supplement my running, so I took up the sport of triathlon. I found that including swimming and cycling into my weekly run routine was great and kept me relative injury free.
Luckily for those of us who enjoy racing, there are many different options of races these days. There are small local races, large local races, trail runs, and large national races. Recently there has been an influx of themed races (color run, foam run), adventure races (mud runs), and just plain wacky races (valentines underwear runs, pajama runs, and high heel races). Despite what some die-hard runners might think, these are all great! Why is that you might ask, because it means there is something out there for everyone. Whether you want to get out to enjoy the comradere of other runners, run a PR (personal record), or enjoy a destination race, there is now something out there for you. Each race has different pros and cons, but the point is that pretty much everyone can find a race to suit their needs. From beginner to more experienced runner–you have options!