Friday, February 20, 2009

Back Home - Time to Get Started Again

I'm writing today's entry while sitting on a plane on my way back to Orange County. I am brand loyal to United Airlines. The advantage is whenever I fly, I am automatically upgraded to economy plus (5 inches of extra leg room). The disadvantage is sometimes it's not always easy to get from point A to point B. Well, that was my week this week. Flying anywhere from my local airport (John Wayne Airport here in the OC - yes - we really do name airports after movie stars!) means that I pretty much have to fly through Chicago or Denver. So, on Tuesday I was in transit for 6 hours from OC to Chicago to Cleveland. My flight to Knoxville the next day took almost 7 hours to fly from Cleveland to Chicago to Knoxville, even though it's only about 500 miles from Cleveland to Knoxville. You get the idea. It means that I spent a lot of time in airplanes and the Red Carpet Club this week. It also means that I didn't get my hotels until after 11PM each night. So, no treadmill running. Boo hoo!

All that idle time though also meant that I was able to catch up on some of my reading. Right now, I'm about 200 pages into Bob Glover's The Competitive Runner's Handbook. The first part of the book (about 160 pages) is boring. If you've read a running book, then you've seen all of this stuff before. Glover spends a lot of time and a lot of words describing various types of workouts. He spends a lot of time discussing what the appropriate pace for each type of workout are based on your current fitness level (based on historical race performance). He spends some time presenting different training plans. Basically, it stuff that I have read elsewhere. And frankly, Pfitzinger does a better job describing the science behind this stuff in Advanced Marathoning.

But, then the book takes a decided turn for the better. Part IV begins the discussion of specific race training and strategies. So far I have read the first couple of chapters - the 5K and 10K. I'm not as interested in the 5K stuff, but right now 10K is probably my favorite distance. The book so is worth the strategy he lays out for the 10k. The one thing I have really been missing in my racing "career" is race day strategy. I go out and run. I start too fast and end up paying for it during the final mile of the race. I am looking forward to my 10K in a month to give Glover's strategy a try. I'll keep updating as I get further into the book.

Oh - and just in case you think that all I do is bash other areas of the U.S. because I'm from Southern California - I was in the Great Smoky Mountains yesterday. We sure don't have anything like that in California!

Now - back to running this afternoon


  1. great book review so far. sounds like the specifics will be helpful! i know both pfitz and daniels' books go into the different types of workouts and why they are good for you and after awhile you don't need all that - just give me the tough workout! :) glad you made it back safe, and hope you get in a good run today!

  2. Great review, and I'd love to read the 10K plan. I'm a 5K fan.

    I'm from Socal, so I just ignore when they bash us. Driving down tonight, and cannot WAIT to get out of this cold!