I just posted an article about going from being a desk jockey to running a 5k the other day. Today, I found a similar article from active.com in my inbox. Their article is similar to mine. We both encourage you to get out and do it. Do not overdo things. There is no shame in walking. Slowly build up to the 5k distance.
I am a firm believer in getting multiple opinions and making your own decisions. It is amazing how many things work well one day and not so well the next. Read up on things and draw your own conclusions. Do your best to not come up with excuses to rest.
Acitve.com is a great place for articles. They are like the Microsoft of event management. They reign supreme but they know there a lot of options available. To stay relevant, they have an online magazine and wordpress style blog. Their blog is excellent. The articles are well written and pertain to most sports for all levels. They are a “for profit site” but I have never noticed a bias in their writing. I give them kudos for keeping the bias out. I have people send me stuff to review and it is so hard to not cheer on the little guys who are just starting out or the people who contact me.
If you are not a member of active.com, I encourage you to browse around their web site. It is a good idea to sign up for their service and have your credit card on file. Some of the events we do sell out quickly. It is good to be on record when you sign up for these events.
Tired of riding alone? Want to push yourself and meet some new friends while in the saddle? How about a local group ride?
Alameda Runners previously published a few tips about group riding, but we’re back with another edition of basic group riding tips for you to survive your time on the road.
BikeRadar published a good video featuring Jamie Sparling, Team Raleigh-GAC super domestique rider, and he shares a few tips about safely riding in a group.
Do not do anything abrasive – Riders are around you, so make sure no frantic movements are made.
Be attentive – Look out for potholes and road obstructions, which keeps you and your fellow riders safe. Either point out road dangers, or be vocal and call out to everyone else.
Keep the group tight – This one takes some skill and practice, as newbie group riders can be really jumpy. You should have some space, but still be able to ride as a cohesive unit.
I’m a complete maniac when I’m peddling by myself, but behavior drastically changes with other riders around me. The first few times riding in a group were intimidating, but as you gain more experience, it becomes a fun time.
Make sure you ride with a group close to your skill level, as you don’t want to participate in a group ride where you’ll be promptly dropped and forgotten about. Team Alameda has weekly organized rides for cyclists of all skill levels, and clearly post the scheduled speed and distance of the rides.
If you’re riding with a local cycling team, don’t be bashful by telling them you’re still new to riding in a group. Remember, a group ride isn’t a race against the clock, and your goal isn’t to try and explode out of the group while simultaneously splintering your riding partners. Also, don’t be afraid to hang out towards the back of the group, avoiding the wind and pace making duties – less experienced riders and slower riders – often end up chit chatting and hanging out.
I am out of running and cycling for now due to a knee injury. That does not mean that you should stop training too. REI – Berkeley is putting out the word for their triathlon training sessions. I like the Berkeley store and think triathlon classes are a great way to get started and find training partners in your area. I am not affiliated with REI in any way. I just think it is a good idea.
I thought you and your members may be interested in a free presentation coming up at REI Berkeley. Would you like to post to your website or email distribution?
Triathlon Basics–Try a Tri?
7 pm–8:30 pm, Tuesday, April 3
REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo Ave www.rei.com/berkeley
Is it time to TRY a TRI? From Sprint to Ironman, triathlons offer a
variety of opportunities to challenge yourself and help get you into
shape. Join REI’s Kappe Rousseau to discover the ins-and-outs of
triathlons: types, distances, how to get started, how to train, and
what to expect on race day. If you register for this free class at www.rei.com/berkeley, we will hold a seat for you until the scheduled
Since I’m absolutely addicted to Twitter (@Alamedarunners), it would only make sense I share some Tour de France 2011 Twitter love. July is my favorite month of the year — mainly due to le Tour — and I look forward to what shoulder great battle between Alberto Contador and the Schleck brothers.
In addition to VeloNews and Cyclingnews, which are two of the largest sites, there are several other great Twitter resources. I highly recommend following PodiumCafe and BikeRadar if you don’t already follow the Twitter and/or visit their websites.
Event and athlete sponsorship continues to be absolutely vital in the endurance sports community with dedicated fans. Sponsors have a variety of different purposes, and often are called upon to fund and supply local races and events.
To help highlight the great effort (and expense) that goes into sports sponsorship, Alameda Runners wants to help you become more familiar with companies that are involved.
We recently chatted with Selle Italia (part one and part two) about the company’s bike saddles, the importance of a good saddle, and how the company contributes to the active community. Selle Italia also is greatly involved in sponsoring bike events and pro athletes, offering a quick glimpse into how it contributes:
“Selle Italia sponsors 11 UCI professional teams, a world champion mountain bike rider, the USAT and a huge number of pro individuals and teams around the world. What is more important to me is the huge number of professional athletes that choose to ride S.I. saddles without sponsorship.”
Selle Italia and most major sports companies choose to help sponsor events and athletes — and these partnerships help the sports community prosper. Companies that push the boundaries and have success with sponsoring events can help build athlete loyalty (very important!) in a tough market.
If there is a company you’d like to see listed, please feel free to e-mail, Tweet, or comment here and recommend a company.
This is a guest post from Yoon (my editor @ TrailsEdge ) about a new book focusing on ultramarathons that has received good reviews.
As a non-marathon runner, Relentless Forward Progress opened my eyes to a whole new level of strategy, planning, and race preparation. From the start, I knew I didn’t meet the qualifications to run an ultra because I’ve never even come close to attempting a regular marathon, but dove into this book as recommended by a friend. I may have just added an item to the bucket list. Running marathons demand respect. Running ultra marathons makes you a superhero, and if there’s anything I’ve wanted in my life since I was a kid, it is to be a super human.
As mentioned by Byron Powell, the author and Editor of iRunFar.com, the book is about as evergreen as a book gets; the content will never go out of date. Relentless Forward Progress is a confident authority that covers every aspect of ultra’s from prepare your quadricepts for down-hill running, to solving race day logistics like support crews and drop bags, and selecting the right runner’s pack to avoid chaffing.
If you’re able to glaze over fine details (schedules, plans, etc.), it’s a fairly quick read. I had it done in about 6 hours and was inspired to hit the trail for a short run (let’s just say the book’s impact on my running habits is long term). It’s an encyclopedia on ultra’s that if read in its entirety, will have you chock full of information that can be applied immediately, even on short runs.
The advice comes from many seasoned experts who have run hundreds and maybe even thousands of ultra’s and have different opinions on how to train. For instance, some of the commentators swear that speed work is important, while others say it’ll slow you down. That’s the beauty of this book; it’s the foundations of an ultra, but the fine tuning has to be done by you.
You’ll realize that ultra’s are on a whole ‘nother level from marathons. Because anyone can run a marathon, given enough time and resources; but an ultra requires that you plan out every minute of every detail; otherwise, you might not finish before the sun goes down.
We haven’t explored guest posts too much on Alameda Runners, but the feature is a definite possibility in the future. Since it’s obviously impossible for us to review, test, interview, and interact with all companies involved in endurance sports, we hope these guest posts help share even more knowledge with all of you.
Kudos to the medical volunteers from the Alameda County Medical Center, as they were a great asset for anyone needing medical attention. Immediately after finishing the half marathon yesterday, I started to feel a rather uneasy feeling in my stomach … an unexpected, miserable feeling most athletes have occasionally suffered through.
Oakland Running Officials had medical stations at the start line, and at miles 4, 6, 11, 15.5, 19, and 23, along with a medical tent at the finish line. The course also had EMTs on bikes to offer needed assistance throughout the course.
The staff I encountered at the finish line tent were extremely courteous and efficient, and were quick to help any runners that needed help.
I ate a banana and some type of delicious brownie pastry during the run, which proved to be a relatively bad idea. I conveniently got sick next to the medical tent — which was located just a few feet away from the finish line — and was given some water and Gatorade. The added fluids and electrolytes helped perk me up and I felt fine just a couple of minutes later, and was able to slip out the door.
I took a few seconds to drink the added fluids and let my legs relax after what was supposed to be an easy, relaxing 13.1 miles. After reassuring the EMT that I was sick from my own foolish behavior, and just needed to rest, he moved on to help others looking in significantly more dire shape.
The Kaiser Half marathon gained media attention for all of the wrong reasons — a runner collapsed and died before EMTs were able to get to the helpless runner. It was an unfortunate incident that continually shows the importance of event planning, which is something CSE obviously took into consideration.
Bikes designed for triathlons and time trials are drastically different than the road bikes most of us are used to riding. Alameda Runners previously published an article describing the basics of tri/TT bike geometry, and tri-specific geometry was discussed.
A different article focuses on the basics of tri/TT bike aerobars (PDF), which offer riders a more aerodynamic position able to limit wind drag. The brief article discusses the brief basics of road bars and aerobars, and why road bars aren’t as well designed for aerodynamics as aerobars.
Triathlete Tech Editor Aaaron Hersh also points out the locations of the base bar, brake grips, brake lever, and other basics. Hersh also discusses clip-on aerobars that give road riders the ability to use aerobars without significant changes to the bike.
Integrated aerobars, which are put on bikes designed specifically for triathlon and time trials bikes, come with the shifters already at the end of the aerobar extension.
If you’re in the market for a bike to ride during triathlons or timed efforts, it’s extremely important to be properly fitted for the bike. Along with comfort and injury prevention, riding a bike frame that is the proper size coupled with aerobars set at the right angle could help performance on race day.
Ted has aero bars on one of his old bikes. He says it is great for resting your upper body before you go out on a long run after the bike ride.