Reply To: Winter MasterClasses

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John Zombro

Wow, that’s cool and it’s got me thinking. After that goal came together and I put it out there I thought I’d do two things.

First would be to invite (not force) a few others to join us in this campaign. Running the mile is a unique test of fitness and it’s actually a fun (in my opinion) training project. Not for everybody but could be for many or most.

Next is to talk briefly about what makes it hard and what makes it easy/fun or at least interesting.

The hard part about running a fast mile is that you have to do mile-specific pace training on a measured course. Track is best but a flat road works when markers are painted on or cairns are placed next to the road at 1/8 mile increments (if accurate). If you don’t get proficient at running the mile pace you simply won’t run to your potential. While a lot of your training is just jogging and athletic durability work (should make up 80% in the off season), it’s the strategic, specific interval training that gets the job done. That 20% of training which is the faster stuff is a mix of race-pace and faster (but shorter) reps. You have to build both a decent amount of endurance and hone your speed mechanics enough to run the mile well. Doing only long distance trail jogging won’t be adequate. But doing no jogging at all will limit your aerobic development.

The easy part of all this is you don’t have to run marathon level distance or do exhaustive, time-consuming beatdown grinders. Keeping it fresh and zesty is key…and it feels good (mostly). And the fitness you gain from this serves you well wherever you go after your mile campaign. This could be toward shorter speed or court and field sports…or more endurance-based stuff like a trail ultra.

But, and this is really important…you gotta be consistent. Not flashy, but consistent. Missing or skipping more than a few key workouts will probably result in major excuse-filled loserville. Not being mean, just honest. So I say this to myself and to anyone else interested in the journey…think it over, and if you are going to commit, stay strong and steady. Use this Forum to support your endeavors. There are always going to be work, weather, and family factors. Keep fitting in your training. When it’s time to push, bear down. When it’s time to coast…really go easy.

If enough of you want to join Kati and I in this quest, I’ll start putting Running Demons workouts in here every week. It will be an adjunct to the main Tribe training and I’ll tell you how to blend it all in. We’ll probably train Feb through April and then bang away at the goal May and maybe June. Then it’s on to other things. That’s probably the last point…seasons don’t last forever. If you try to stretch it out all year it won’t work.

With love from Daddy.