70 degrees. That is what my car temperature read at 3:00 today when I got in my car.Don't worry it quickly dropped down to the true 48 that is was, but I took that high temperature as an omen. It was time for my first outdoor run of 2010, and man was I excited. I geared up, layered up, music'd up, ear warmer'd up, and was on my way. The prescribed mileage for the day; 7 beautiful outdoor, non-treadmill miles. Wow. It felt so good. I can't even tell you. I felt like a kid at outside recess after a two-week snowed in indoor recess captivity.
While I was running I thought about how there are some uneducated outdoor exercisers...why did I start thinking about this? Because I saw several.
So, because the weather is going to be getting a little nicer, inviting us to come out and meet the sun in all our pasty glory...here is my Outdoor Exercise 101.
- Dress Appropriately. Yes, your legs look HOT in those booty shorts, but it's still 35 degrees. Don't go beggin' for a cold. Cover your head. That is where you lose most your heat. As for warm temps; wear cool, breathable clothing that won't cause you to overheat.
- Make Eye Contact w/Cars. If you are crossing streets, dodging behind driveways, or just in the way; be SURE you are seen. Cars aren't always looking for pedestrians, so you be looking for them.
- Obey traffic protocol. Cross at crosswalks, use traffic lights, wait for your turn to go...etc. etc. etc. These things are where they are for a reason. If you aren't going to obey them, go somewhere where you don't have to. Provo River trail anyone?
- DO NOT GO ALONE AT NIGHT. Yep, I mean it. Can you tell? This one get's big bold, huge font. There is NOTHING that makes me more mad, then when i see girls running alone at night. You are just asking for trouble. Please just DON'T. k? Thanks. Along with this...i'll just throw in, don't go running in sketchy parts of town or unknown areas. Be careful!
- Let someone know where you're at. Silly as this may seem, be sure that you are always telling at least one person that you are going to be working out outside. Safety first. Even if it's just a casual, "Well, I've got to go. I'm going for a run outside." At the end of a phone convo. Tell someone.
- Use those arms. If you're going to workout do it right. You up your calories and increase your intensity when you use your arms. This goes for the gym too. I always hate when i see people at the gym gripping the treadmill or the stable handlebars. If you're going to work out, make it worth it!
- Hydrate. If you are planning on doing lengthy exercise sessions, be sure to get a water belt, plant some water bottles, or know of some places you could stop at.
- Take it in. Enjoy the beautiful outdoors, because man are they beautiful!
To answer some questions: (Which I love, so keep them coming!)
The program that I use to train is from Hal Higdon's Website. Click HERE to check it out. I have used his 1/2 and full marathon programs and I like both of them.
It is fine to shift around your long runs if you need to during the week. I would try to keep them consistently on the same day weekly, if possible. However, your long runs don't have to be on Saturday. (That is just when I do mine because time permits.) I would be sure to have a rest day, or light cross training day on the day before your long run so your body can be prepped for your long run.
I am so impressed by all that you guys are doing! Keep running! Keep pushing yourselves. Your'e awesome! :)