Sunday, August 7, 2011
Week 2 - Off the Res
At first the good news. 80 miles this week; feeling pretty good. I must apologize to my coaches, however - all 25 of them - for deviating from the schedule a bit. If you makes them feel any better, I'm sort of known for doing this. I honestly think both my high school and college coaches were two of the best there are and I did the exact same thing to them. Actually much worse, in all honesty. To their credit, they both gave me considerable leeway in my running program. While I exemplified the quote "give an inch, they'll take a mile," in using up all their leeway and then some (and then some more) we seemed to work out an amicable understanding that kept me improving throughout my high school and college years and beyond. I believe this should be a lesson to all coaches that in the end, the career of a runner belongs to the runner, not the coach. As a coach, you advise and present a strong case for your program and hope you build enough trust with your runners that they listen to you. I fell as a coach I accomplish this pretty well but at the same time can't think of an athlete I've ever coached who does exactly what I tell them all the time. When it comes right down to it I think this is for the best. In the end, a coach is an observer and only the runner goes through the actual details of the workouts, the races, all of it. The more experienced a runner gets, the more the runner needs to take in all the information and process it to find a plan that works. Sometimes, that plan will be what the coach says, sometimes it will be easier, sometimes harder, sometimes completely different. A smart coach not only accepts this, but encourages it and hopes to cultivate it. Only the insecure coaches need to see their plan followed through to the letter. Ironically, by forcing the training minutiae, the biggest deviation in the plan usually comes in races. A coach who cannot allow the athlete to make his or own decisions in training is usually the coach who sits and wonders why his athletes are so weak that they end up injured or slower than expected at the end of the season. This is not to say that athletes should be going by their gut every day of the week. A good training plan is an outline that will propel the runner to success. The program is just an outline, however. Ad-libbing is an integral part of the equation. So if my coaches will accept the preceding as my excuse, I will now confess to playing with the schedule a bit. Part of it was practical as I needed to switch my Thursday run to a long run with Rebekah. After that, things just kind of spiraled into to my all to familiar stream of consciousness training. In summary, early week went according to schedule, my sub tempo was a little faster than planned and I had to shorten my tempo workout as it too started too fast. The long run just got thrown in and Friday included some solid strides in the form of my 16x100 on 60. After that, Saturday turned into another sub tempo which flt a lot more like a tempo run. To finish the bastardization of the week, I went 15 today as that was what the group I was with was doing. All in all, like I said to start, I think it was a good week, but I think I'll try to stick closer to the plan this week. In future weeks - we better just put this out there now as my previous coaches would expect it - I might have a few more races than are on the schedule.