I realize that I am only 27 years old, but this summer has been one of the wettest (if not THE wettest) I can remember. It seems like in June (and now in August), the weather app on my iPhone shows those little t-storms almost every single day. In fact, I vividly remember the back to back June flood days in Sioux Falls; partly because it flooded my grandparent's basement in the south part of town, but mostly because of the small little "pings" on my car left from the hail. That afternoon I tried to make my way through town down 41st street, with very little luck as the only non-flooded lane I could drive was in the center turn lane.
With these two rainy months in the summer, I've realized that my attitude about running has changed dramatically since I graduated from Nebraska Wesleyan University in 2010. There was one time in college where we headed out to do a four mile tempo, but two miles in (at the turnaround point), the tornado sirens went off. No one had ever coached what to do in that situation, so we just kept going (not a smart thing to do). Then with one mile left in the workout, a huge lightning crash hit off to our left (again, not a smart thing to be running in that weather).
I've noticed now that my attitude has shifted from the "run at all costs" mentality to the other side of the spectrum. It's happened numerous times where I will be all ready to go out for a run, only to feel what I think might be rain and go back inside. After all, I don't want to get wet while I'm out getting sweaty (I realize that logic makes zero sense). With that being said, I wanted to write a few tips for dealing with non-snow, inclement weather:
1) If you hear tornado sirens, go to your basement, not out the front door for a run. If you are already out on your run, seek shelter immediately. Don't push your luck like I did.
2) If you see lightning/hear thunder, stay inside. Run on a treadmill, or get on a stationary bike for cross training. Again, don't put yourself in unnecessary danger. Another option is to wait until the storm passes to run. Same rules apply to hail.
3) If it's just raining out, feel free to go jumping in puddles; just be wary of #1 and #2. Running is a lot of fun when you realize that your shirt/shorts/socks/shoes will get soaked.
4) If you decide to run in the rain, make sure you use preventative Body Glide or vaseline or some kind of anti-chaffing mechanism. Apply liberally and thank me later.
5) Avoid cotton; cotton socks, cotton shirts, everything cotton. Not only does it soak up all the water and make for some incredibly heavy clothing, but it will inspire you to follow tip #4 going forward. Try picking up some Balega socks from the store instead. They are like walking on clouds.
6) When your shoes DO get soaked in the above mentioned ways, you need to take some immediate precautions. Remove your insoles and stuff the toe of your shoes with some moisture-wicking material, some of my favorites are newspaper, old rags or when necessary, paper towels. Doing this will keep the toe shape of your shoe intact and will speed up the drying process. Otherwise you'll be left running in cold, wet shoes for the next day or two.
7) As soon as you get done running, dry off. Take a shower, pop some vitamin c, eat a Clif Bar (or something equally good) and relax. This will help your body stay healthy at a vulnerable spot.
Happy running (unless it's storming all day long; in that case, enjoy a well-deserved day off)!
Go Dog, Go
If you were in the store on our grand opening just over a month ago, you probably got to meet Lucy. Lucy is our three year-old, fully-grown, six-pound malti-poo. My wife Jenna and I don't have kids yet, but Lucy might as well be. She sleeps in our bed, she has a ton of toys and my wife dresses her up with a myriad of colorful bows. Lucy loves sleeping in, walks around the neighborhood and chicks, but one thing Lucy does not like is running. Sure, she is good for a 30 second sprint around the couch here and there, but when I take her to the track, she is lucky to make it 200m before rolling over on her side in the grass. Lucy is a sprinter, not a long distance runner. Lucy is also one of the driving reasons we want our store to be dog friendly (treats behind the counter, water bowl out front, etc.).
Another thing that Lucy is not good at is listening. I guess she figures she's so cute she can get away with whatever she wants. I see this especially on walks when she tangles up Jenna and I or falls behind to catch a final whiff of the neighbor's freshly cut grass. A dog's life is only so long, so we figure we'll let her have her way.
Anyway, it's the history of Lucy that made me interested in bringing in Jill Morstand, PhD to the 605 Running Company for a workshop on exercising with your dog. The workshop will give you and your dog the information and skills you need to get the most out of your regular walk/run. So, mark your calendars for Saturday, October 4th for our workshop that will take place from 9am - 2pm. This initial class will be capped at 15, so we are asking people to pay $10 to reserve their spot. Lunch and a $5 gift certificate to the store will be included for all attendees of the class. Just stop by the store to get you and your dog signed up!
At the very least, you'll probably get to meet Lucy, but beware, she likes people way more than she likes dogs.
Happy Running (with your dog)!
Eight ways to beat the heat!
I felt like we had been spoiled the early part of this summer as far as weather goes. Lots of rain in June (maybe too much) helped keep temperatures down, which made for incredible training weather. However, over the fast 2-3 weeks, the temperature has returned to the levels that we all know/expect/love. Because of that, I wanted to post some tips for running through the heat:
1) Hydrate - Although water is typically the best pre-run hydrator, if you know you are going to lose a lot of sweat in the heat, drink 16 ounces of a sports drink about an hour before you head out. The key to these drinks is that they contain electrolytes, which increases your water-absorption rate and replaces the electrolytes you lose in sweat.
2) Be Flexible - If you know it's going to be hot and that you won't have a chance to run until after work, consider moving that day's long or high-intensity workout to a different day. If you have to run in the sun, pick routes with shade (I'm thinking the clockwise loop starting at the store).
5) Be Patient - It takes 8-14 days to acclimate to hot weather. Over that time, your body will learn to lower your heart rate, decreased your core temperature and increase your sweat rate.
6) Get an Early Start - I know it's tough to wake up, but running in the heat is SO much better if you get it done in the cool of the day. Even on a day like today where I woke up at 5am to run in 77 degree weather, it is a thousand times better than what it will be later today. PLUS, I don't have to worry about it the rest of the day. I can just spend my Friday enjoying that it's already done. If you are just reading this now and didn't get out in the morning, wait until evening. The sun's rays aren't as strong, but don't run so late that it keeps you from falling asleep.
7) Slow Down - Every 5 degree increase in temperature about 60 degrees can slow you down by as much as 20-30 seconds per mile. Knowing that going into every run in the heat will help you survive.
8) Hydrate - Am I making a point with this? I've got one of these 605 Runing Company Nalgene bottles sitting at my desk with 20 ounces of water in it (well, now 16 because I've been hydrating while I write this post). If you get tired of the taste of water, it's easy to throw in some Nuun to spice it up a little. For me, I'm fine with plain old, boring water flavored water.
Anyway, there's a lot of information here, but hopefully you can pick a way or two that will help you continue training through this late summer/early fall; especially #'s 1, 4 and 8.
Where the Sidewalk Ends...
Logan Watley is one of the owners of the 605 Running Company in downtown Sioux Falls, SD. He ran at Lincoln Christian High School in Lincoln, NE where he was a two-time state champion in the 3200m run. He competed collegiality at D-III Nebraska Wesleyan University (NWU) in Lincoln, NE and was a three time All-Conference and three time All-Region performer. On the track, Logan specialized in the 1500/mile, winning five conferences titles. His personal best in the mile is 4:11.14, and in cross country, his best time for an 8k was 24:51. Since graduating from NWU, Logan spent some time focusing on the marathon distance, having ran both the Chicago and Boston Marathon, but now prefers to focus on races under 90 minutes.
As part of our desire to help build the running community in Sioux Falls through the 605 Running Company, I thought it would be beneficial to post a regular blog about running, racing and how this ties into our everyday lives. Although this blog will be regular, the author(s) will most likely change from post to post to give different perspectives.
In this first post, I wanted to introduce the name of our blog, which comes from one of my all-time favorite books as a kid (right up there with Where the Wild Things Are, Harold and the Purple Crayon or Green Eggs and Ham) that I've just re-discovered. I remember my parents reading to me "Jimmy Jet and His TV Set", "For Sale" and "Sarah Cynthia Silvia Stout Would Not Take The Garbage Out" (among others). Of course at that time I was more interested in the pictures than the stories and their meanings, which is why it is interesting for me now to go back and re-read the poems I had first heard as a kid.
One of my all-time favorites is the namesake for this blog. I'm a runner. I can relate to a sidewalk ending. When I'm running, an ending sidewalk indicates I have to make a choice: to hop onto the shoulder or across the grass to continue on with my run or to turn around and call it a day. It is an obstacle that I face and a pain in my running routine. It is an opportunity to better myself or to take the "chicken exit". It is a gauge for how someone reacts to adversity, and if you run any time or distance (5 minutes up to 30 miles), you are familiar with facing adversity.
I don't think Mr. Silverstein had running in mind when he wrote this little poem. He seems to be talking more about youth and how good it is to be young. He talks of leaving a world with black smoke and dark, curvy streets to a peaceful, restful place. For me, running provides this escape, and allows me, for six to eight miles, to live in a place where the sidewalk ends.
Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
There is a place where the sidewalk ends
And before the street begins,
And there the grass grows soft and white,
And there the sun burns crimson bright,
And there the moon-bird rests from his flight
To cool in the peppermint wind.
Let us leave this place where the smoke blows black
And the dark street winds and bends.
Past the pits where the asphalt flowers grow
We shall walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And watch where the chalk-white arrows go
To the place where the sidewalk ends.
Yes we'll walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And we'll go where the chalk-white arrows go,
For the children, they mark, and the children, they know
The place where the sidewalk ends.