Episode 35 – March 2021 Challenge Updates!

The Daft Duo contemplate their progress in the February 10k Challenge… and discuss a bonus challenge that gets deep on the emotions of running.

The Daft Duo contemplate their progress in the February 10k Challenge… and discuss a bonus challenge that gets deep on the emotions of running.

Episode 34 – The February Challenge Intro!

Moving on from our Daft January challenge, the Daft Runners outline the plan for February!

Moving on from our Daft January challenge, the Daft Runners outline the plan for February!

Episode 33 – The Daft 5k Challenge – Results!

Our first challenge for 2021 is now in the books! Jamie & Alex discuss the results of their endeavour to improve their 5k time for January. How effective were their training plans? Tune in to find out!

Our first challenge for 2021 is now in the books! Jamie & Alex discuss the results of their endeavour to improve their 5k time for January. How effective were their training plans? Tune in to find out!

Episode 32 – 2020 Close Out

A goodbye to 2020, revisiting the adventured we had ordering gadgets and apps to get through the year that was a little light on the traveling adventures!

A goodbye to 2020, revisiting the adventured we had ordering gadgets and apps to get through the year that was a little light on the traveling adventures!

Events mentioned in this article:
Journey to the North Pole (Virtual)

Daft Runners YouTube!

Episode 31 – Getting to 2021

December has crept up quickly, and with 2021 presenting an opportunity for adventures Jamie & Alex discuss potential events and training motivations to get us through into 2021!

December has crept up quickly, and with 2021 presenting an opportunity for adventures Jamie & Alex discuss potential events and training motivations to get us through into 2021!

Events mentioned in this article:

Journey to the North Pole (Virtual)

Episode 30 – Training at Home

Still mostly at home, Alex and Jamie discuss training with Zwift on the turbo trainer and what to look for in a home treadmill when you’re on a budget but still need to get some serious miles in!

Still mostly at home, Alex and Jamie discuss training with Zwift on the turbo trainer and what to look for in a home treadmill when you’re on a budget but still need to get some serious miles in!

Episode 29 – Checking In

Having spent a few more months mostly at home, the duo discuss the virtual event (singular) they’ve partaken in and what new exercise equipment is filling up their spare rooms.

Having spent a few more months mostly at home, the duo discuss the virtual event (singular) they’ve partaken in and what new exercise equipment is filling up their spare rooms.

 

Extrinsic Motivation

Reaching month 3 of lockdown meant that it was 4 months since our last event. The volume of training therefore went down quite steeply as the call to be prepared to run any distance at all for what seemed like a longer and longer time seemed to be near silent. Running events we were psyching ourselves up to for months were postponed indefinitely or cancelled.

It’s at times like these when external (extrinsic) motivations can really help. Groups of friends keeping everyone up with their latest 3-figure distance accomplishments – whether that be over weeks or months.

For June we both signed up to cover distances as part of the Ultra Challenge ‘Boost it for June’ virtual event.

For me this meant having to push a decent distance 5x a week – basically a jolly enhancement to my work-week that necessitated waking up earlier. Still not particularly early mind you – just earlier than rolling out of bed a 5-to-9 to log in.

Having this extra bit of motivation helped me actually get up and get some decent miles in over the month – especially as the event allowed you to log your activity through a Strava group, so knowing the results were being published up there meant there was a step that one felt obliged to log the committed distance.

As it starts to look more likely that we won’t be seeing any in-person events this side of autumn in the UK – perhaps a few more more virtual community events could be the answer to keeping us all logging the higher mileages throughout the summer!

(PS – remember to stay hydrated!)

Getting into Running

As I write this, we in the UK have been ‘social distancing’ under lockdown for about 2 months. Right at the start there were plenty of people using their once-a-day outside allowance to attempt to start running, good on them.

Obviously, being the keen ultra-distance machine that I am, I did not lose pace. I kept doing the high level cardio and long weekend runs and staying in tip-top shape. OK, so I didn’t. For the first month or so, I did pretty much nothing.

Regular listeners may have heard us say on one occasion or other ‘running is terrible’. Honestly, I’m not lying – there are times when it is really dreadfully dull and painful.

Why bother?

This is a question I’ve asked myself often – worrying if it’s simply ego trying to make out I’m better that others. But, honestly it is the sense of exploration, achievement with some camaraderie thrown in for good measure.

But you cannot do that without actually practicing some running.

Get going!

First, decide what you are doing this for. Just exercise? Some form of meditative practice? From experience it helps massively to have a reason to get out there – and make sure it’s specific.

What do you need?

Well, there are plenty of articles out there around shoe choice, etc. But first off… just go out in some vaguely appropriate clothing and, you know, run. Head out, walk around a bit and start to bring up your pace into a jog and then a run but – and this is key – run only about HALF as far as you think you could and HALF as hard you think you can. If you really aren’t in…optimal…shape, let’s say, you’ll notice this immediately – 10 meters too much? Well done, walk it out a bit more and plan to go out again in a couple of day’s time.

Super excited and want more? Great, have a look at training and aspirational event videos on youtube – perhaps even listen to a few of our episodes where we talk about training and recovery. Don’t go crazy and run 2x a day, don’t just buy a whole load of running gear which you may not even use.

After you’ve got into the swing of things, say a couple of runs a week for a month or two, maybe you’ll notice more where you have some discomfort. Great news, now you get to go shopping!

Guide me, oh master!

Head to a running shop and use the knowledge you have gained from your own running practice to help pick out your shoes, with the help of the shoe guru in the shop (perhaps try a couple of places). Skip all the expensive socks and that – just go to Sports Direct/Decathlon/TK Maxx or whatever for anything that isn’t shoes. At this stage, your shoes should be far and away the most expensive kit, by maybe 5-10x the next expensive piece of kit you have. If you have a £8 pair of shorts, maybe you’re spending up-to £80 on some fancy shoes. (I wouldn’t, because I’m too tight).

Note – you may have heard I run in barefoot shoes, because I’m freaking amazing. Honestly, I prefer barefoot running but think it may not be the best place to start – but if you want to try it out, see if you can find a barefoot coach/mentor around you.

Running Friends

You’ll probably want to do this before you complete the shopping phase – but we all know you won’t because we are living in a material world and I am… certain you’ll want to indulge in some consumer therapy.

Anyway, yes find some friends who like to run, or groups online or at the pub… you don’t have to do anything as crass as actually run with them, but it helps you get a bit more immersed in the hobby and move you more towards your goal. Enthusiasm breeds progress, and podcasts.

Final thoughts

As we move out of lockdown, there are going to be people who started out with good intentions – taking the once-a-day exercise rules who perhaps gave up once it became hard. There are going to be those who stayed in for most of the lockdown and are perhaps now lower in the fitness spectrum than they were going in. Finally, those who want to use the post-lockdown experience as a time to enjoy the freedom.

Whatever the case, find your adventure and work towards it. Sometimes that means you’ll have to run, so lets get going!

Episode 28 – Daft Watches

Weeks later, the duo are still locked down. Any money saved from not traveling to events is instead just going to funding new gadgetry. This week, Jamie has been looking into watches to replace his trusty Garmin. Discussion on our historic follies in watch utilisation ensue…

Weeks later, the duo are still locked down. Any money saved from not traveling to events is instead just going to funding new gadgetry. This week, Jamie has been looking into watches to replace his trusty Garmin. Discussion on our historic follies in watch utilisation ensue…