This should provide some answers to some of the more frequent questions people ask me about my running habits, and how they effect my life.
Do you eat/drink during your runs?
These days I typically don’t bring anything with me for a run that’s going to be <2hours, if it’s going to be 2.5 hours or longer, I’ll typically bring a ~20oz hand held water bottle, and consume some sort of gu/clifshot/whatever I happen to have handy this week (usually ~100 calories per). These I typically consume at a rate of 1 per hour, starting at the 60 minute mark. This is less than Ideal for my nutritional needs, and usually involves me ending my longer runs rather depleted. For more substantial runs, I’ll typically drop off water on the way, or run a series of loops, returning to my car for a refill every couple of hours.
Why don’t you carry a running backpack, like a Camelbak?
I don’t like how they feel, the bouncing/friction usually starts to get on my nerves, not to mention the extra (often unnecessary) weight. I’ll take a pack with me (as of March 2013, an Ultimate Direction Signature Series Vest) if I’m going for a long run somewhere very unfamiliar, or if I’m in an area where the weather is more mercurial, making some additional gear a prudent decision.
Do you ever wear socks when you’re running?
Not really…. if it’s super-cold, or there’s fresh snow on the ground I’ll wear socks (I’m presently impartial to brands… but my top drawer seems to have some SmartWool, Injinji, and Swiftwick making up the brunt of things) but generally, I try to avoid socks.
Is there a rhyme or reason to your alternation of road and trail miles?
Fundamentally… no. I prefer to run on the trails, and the majority of my race plans for this year (2015) are trail oriented. I do however, put in some rather substantial pavement sessions, which are usually a result of time constraints, work, or a desire/need to increase the tempo in a way that I can’t do as consistently on the tech.
What’s the deal with your evening “shakeout” runs?
I think running a second time in the evening allows me to stay in touch with my form, especially when I’m tired/sore. I typically run these either literally barefoot, or in some type of uber-minimalist shoe. This allows me to really hone in on any form issues, fundamentally using the feedback from my legs/feet to problem solve.
How do you take the blog Photos?
I carry my camera in a small eyeglass case that has a clip on it, and clip this to the inside of my waistband. Sometimes I’ll also carry a Gorilla Pod in one of my hands, or again stuffed in my shorts, otherwise, I improvise tripods with rocks etc. The rest of the photos (often attributed!) are taken by friends. (eyeglass case idea stolen from Anton Krupicka)
How do you track your mileage?
I do in fact, own a Garmin, in fact it’s a Garmin Fenix if you’d like me to be specific. I used to fundamentally guess all of my mileage, and concentrate exclusively on time/vert stats to manage my training, but I’ve found that being able to take a more granular view of my runs is advantageous for planning.
Do you do any strength work?
The past several years, no. Recently however, at the behest of my boss (an avid crossfitter) I’ve begun a relatively regular body-weight routine, which is supplemented heavily by gym climbing,
Do you do any stretching?
Not in the traditional sense. Most of my stretching is without any structure, but I try to maintain some flexibility in my lower legs (especially achilles and hips) and have been known to do a fair amount of yoga from time to time.