At the library the other day looking for a baseball book for Ben, I stumbled onto a running book that has not only synchronized my triathlon and marathon training but got me back on track with my training partner as well.
Though my sister Traci and I plan to do a sprint triathlon together this fall, I’ve been captivated by endurance running while she’s gotten more into swimming. Thanks to Run Less, Run Faster — by three exercise scientists who developed the Furman FIRST training program, Bill Pierce, Scott Murr and Ray Moss — we’re both way more excited about our workouts and doing more of them together.
The authors’ research suggests that three focused weekly running workouts supplemented with two days of cross training increases speed, strength and overall fitness while reducing injury. The book’s training programs are specifically designed to help readers qualify for the Boston marathon.
Traci and I were already sold on cross-training, but this book has made us both more excited about running together again. The runs consist of an interval training session, a tempo run (slow at the beginning and end with faster-paced miles in the middle) and building distance at a slower pace.
The suggested times in the book are too fast for us and we don’t have regular access to a track, but we figure we can use the basic format to ramp up the running we already do — or did, I should say, because this year we really hadn’t been running together that much.
Though I love mindless, unstructured running, my sister craves workouts that feel like, well, work. We’ll probably try to do distance and tempo runs together, but given our busy schedules we may do intervals on our own — or better yet, with our kids.
All I know is, she’s excited about running again. And I’m excited to get my training partner back.