Author Topic: 5k run  (Read 8446 times)

Offline chipset

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5k run
« on: September 02, 2007, 11:45:30 PM »
Hi,

I have a couple of questions about XC 5k run.

1. Is it better to have longer but slower strides or fast but short strides? How should I try run in that context?
2. Is it better to rest on uphill run or sprint?

I thought this is directly related to parkour (i.e. overcoming obstacles quickly) so I posted it out here :)

Thanks.
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Offline Mark Toorock

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2007, 03:01:39 AM »
In that case, it is best to mix it up, sprint sometimes, jog sometimes. For stride, find your natural stride first, then experiment with it. Try to count the number of steps to an object (root, curb) before you get there, like "In 5 steps my left foot will hit that curb" ... this will help you to even your steps (and momentum) when you come to somethingfor a vault, tic-tac, wallclimb. Read up on Fartleks.
 
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Offline HuoMaKe

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2007, 12:51:01 PM »
Long, even strides for most of the race, then quick and long at the end.

And power up hills, but not sprint. You don't want to stop on them. This comes from a fairly experienced XC runner who HATES hills.
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Offline OmahaBeef

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2007, 03:05:37 PM »
Hi,

I have a couple of questions about XC 5k run.

1. Is it better to have longer but slower strides or fast but short strides? How should I try run in that context?
2. Is it better to rest on uphill run or sprint?

I thought this is directly related to parkour (i.e. overcoming obstacles quickly) so I posted it out here :)

Thanks.

Hey, its a topic I know something about! I ran CC/distance track pretty much year round for four years in high school so if you have any more questions feel free to ask.

1. In general, it is better to have quick short strides, ESPECIALLY at the end of your race for your kick. You should pace yourself so that you don't have a ton of energy left for the end, but you should try to efficiently use the energy by quickening your stride. To do this focus on the following: get your heel up to your but as quickly as possible while also getting your knees up high (hip level) as quickly as possible, and conversely getting both of these motions going back down towards the ground as quickly as possible. Also, your arms should be pumping quickly from down to your hip, up to around shoulder level, and like your legs, they should be quick short pumps.

2. On hills, maintain effort NOT speed. Does this mean slack off on hills? Absolutely not. If you are pacing yourself correctly, if you maintain effort and not speed on the hill you should be able to pass lots of people when you get over the hill. (Also, a key to running hills in races is to not focus on getting to the top of the hill, but up and over the top for about 10-20 yards depending on the size of the hill. Also, on hills it is essential to get a forward lean, and run on the balls of your feet. These are general good running technique tips, but are all the more important on hills.)

Any more questions? That was fun.  ;D

Offline OmahaBeef

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2007, 03:11:37 PM »
Long, even strides for most of the race, then quick and long at the end.

And power up hills, but not sprint. You don't want to stop on them. This comes from a fairly experienced XC runner who HATES hills.

The reason why you generally want to focus on short strides is because as your stride gets longer, the time from your last surge of energy also gets longer. You start to lose speed the moment your foot finishes pushing off the ground. By taking more strides in a given distance you have less time between strides, and thusly less energy lost due to lengthened strides over a given distance.

Offline chipset

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2007, 04:18:21 PM »
M2, I tried 3 mi faltreks with 7 100-150m bursts flat out, 4 of which were uphill.

I felt faltrek as a completely another thing compared to normal runs. I could
continue with normal running speed after with 15-20 seconds of rest after first two sprints.
But after any further sprints I could only jog pretty slow. And I mean really slow :)

HuoMaKe, yeah, I tried resting on hills to get advantage afterwards. Now I understand
that it was slowing me down a lot, achieving effect of basically walking during race :)
Which is not cool at all.

OmahaBeef,

1. Well, the kind of distribution I have right now is.

First km: getting ahead fast, slowing/speeding up while trying to find fastest speed
I could keep up with. My strides are huge during this time. Although I do feel like
wasting precious pre-race oxygen on vertical leap and not keeping rhythm.
I probably should get a very slow start and increase until optimal speed?

Next three kms: trying to keep up with the pace, resting on hills and increasing pace
slightly after hills. My strides are not very small but not very huge. I also vary my strides
a lot, trying to find what the hell is easier and faster. Hence the question :)

Next ~700-800 meters: speeding up, increasing stride length. I usually try to
get on my toes within this time. I couldn't run whole 5k on toes anyway right now :(
Last 200 meters: dead sprint on toes. With very big strides.

So, I should try make strides small but fast?

2. Yeah, I slightly understand what you're talking about. Trying to waste same amount of oxygen as earlier in the
race!
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Offline OmahaBeef

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2007, 05:13:23 PM »
First km: getting ahead fast, slowing/speeding up while trying to find fastest speed
I could keep up with. My strides are huge during this time. Although I do feel like
wasting precious pre-race oxygen on vertical leap and not keeping rhythm.
I probably should get a very slow start and increase until optimal speed?

Every runner has his or her own strategy at the beginning of the race. Some love to go out fast, and some like to go out conservatively. I recommend that you experiment with both throughout the season. If you like to go out fast, try going out a little faster one race, or going out more  conservatively. In general, "huge" strides are not a good thing. Also, you mention "vertical leap." No matter what your stride length, you should never be bouncing. You should take note of what your body is doing while you are running. Any energy that does not propel yourself forward is wasted energy. (So watch stuff like your arms swinging across your body, your legs kicking out on your stride, having your shoulders tense and raised up and your body/head bouncing around. Even little things like keeping a relaxed face helps.)

Before your race you should set goals for your splits and wear a watch. Plan out your splits to be basically even, and shoot for negative splits (where you get faster from one split to the next). However, attaining negative splits is very difficult, so if that comes easy to you reevaluate the goals you set for your splits. And like I've been saying, shorter strides are better. Basically, the faster you want to go, the shorter you should make your stride. However, this does not just mean make your feet hit the ground a lot, and just shuffle. Shuffling gets you nowhere. Be sure that you are running on the balls of your feet, with a slight forward lean, and bringing your knees/heels up high, then quickly back down to the ground as quickly as possible.

Next three kms: trying to keep up with the pace, resting on hills and increasing pace
slightly after hills. My strides are not very small but not very huge. I also vary my strides
a lot, trying to find what the hell is easier and faster. Hence the question :)

In a race you are never "resting." Like I said, on hills you should: have a forward lean, run on the balls of your feet (if this is difficult for you, you should do calf strengthening exercises). Maintain effort on hills. If you can maintain effort on hills in a race, if someone passes you on the hill, you will most likely blow by them as you go over the top. However, maintain effort does not mean "go slow" on the hill. It means that you should be able to accelerate over the top of the hill.

Next ~700-800 meters: speeding up, increasing stride length. I usually try to
get on my toes within this time. I couldn't run whole 5k on toes anyway right now :(
Last 200 meters: dead sprint on toes. With very big strides.

If you are in a serious "dead sprint" at the end of the race you saved too much energy. Like I said, shoot for consistent splits. It may seem easy, but as the race goes on, each km (or mile, however you decide to split up the 5k/3.1 miles) will take considerably more energy than the previous one. Especially in races that don't count for anything (aka regular season races for the most part) it is better to run out of gas before the end of the race than it is to have more left in the tank after you finish. However, you should have a kick at the end of the race. You should really be pushing yourself at the end of the race. It will take mental toughness, but focus on the running technique I mentioned, and make your strides as fast and short as possible. (Again, this doesn't mean shuffle, this means fast, quick, but full strides that include your knees coming all the way up to around hip level, your heels coming up to your butt, then both motions back down towards the ground as quickly as possible.)

So, I should try make strides small but fast?

Bingo.

2. Yeah, I slightly understand what you're talking about. Trying to waste same amount of oxygen as earlier in the
race!

What do you mean by that last question?

By the way, keep asking questions if you have more. I've got all this info sitting around in my head not being used haha.

Offline Mark Toorock

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2007, 07:27:01 PM »
I'm sorry, I think I may have misunderstood .. I thought you meant using the 5K as training for PK .. not that "racing a 5K is just another obstacle". If the question is about doing a 5k race, I have no idea, but these other guys seem to have it covered pretty well :)
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Offline chipset

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2007, 08:23:37 PM »
OmahaBeef,

Quote from: OmahaBeef
Also, you mention "vertical leap." No matter what your stride length, you should never be bouncing. You should take note of what your body is doing while you are running. Any energy that does not propel yourself forward is wasted energy. (So watch stuff like your arms swinging across your body, your legs kicking out on your stride, having your shoulders tense and raised up and your body/head bouncing around. Even little things like keeping a relaxed face helps.)
Yeah thanks! I noticed my body is really bouncing, especially in first kilometers. Then it gets more of a horizontal
momentum. Will work on converting bouncing to movement forward.

Quote
Basically, the faster you want to go, the shorter you should make your stride.
Relevation! I thought it's more like sprint.

Also, about balls of the feet. I never thought it's possible to run whole 5k on toes. Now I see that it is possible and is recommended =)))

Quote
It will take mental toughness, but focus on the running technique I mentioned, and make your strides as fast and short as possible. (Again, this doesn't mean shuffle, this means fast, quick, but full strides that include your knees coming all the way up to around hip level, your heels coming up to your butt, then both motions back down towards the ground as quickly as possible.)
As far as I know, in sprinting bigger fast strides are good. Does this mean that if I'm able
to  really sprint that hard in the end of 5k I was slacking off whole race?

Quote
What do you mean by that last question?
Well, you say effort. This means I should be getting as tired as in earlier stages even though it makes me slower on hills?

Quote
By the way, keep asking questions if you have more. I've got all this info sitting around in my head not being used haha.
Well, if you don't mind =))

1. Is it good to drink lots of water before race when it's hot? I tried both ways and can't seem to understand whether it's good to be more hydrated or bad to have water bouncing in your body.

2. Should I let my breathing adjust itself or try to adjust breath-in/breath-outs to steps manually?
Alongway, is it preferrable to keep slower but steady pace with no feeling of anaerobic activity or
increases/decreases in speed along with lack of oxygen?

3. What about running downhill? Same concept of having same effort as running up the hill?

4. By the way, you said about bringing my knee to waist level. Is it good to bring knee as high as possible?
It seems like too much of a vertical movement for knee.
Also, would it be bad to let gravity take care of leg going down back to the earth where it came from?

5. Oh, and yeah, should I check out girls that walk nearby running track while I'm running or this must wait until the end of race?

M2, 5k/6k faltrek is one of the best damn exercises for running/parkour I have ever found in my life. But yeah, I was
asking about good old 5k racing =)))
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Offline Alissa J. Bratz

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #9 on: September 03, 2007, 08:27:02 PM »
Wow. Some awesome advice here. I hate running more than I hate okra (which, being the only food on the planet I dislike, is a pretty big deal), so I'm not even going to pretend to give you advice on this, but I do want to point out that Cheetah might have some helpful things to add, so you might want to send him a PM directing him to this thread.

Good luck on your run! Let us know how you do!
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Offline OmahaBeef

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #10 on: September 03, 2007, 09:05:51 PM »
I've been doing more thinking/remembering about running and I should mention that the "fast quick strides" thing takes a lot of energy. For that reason, at the end of races you can focus on lengthening thing your stride to help you with your kick, but you still have to be careful not to over stride. I think a lot of people over stride (I know I did for a long time) thinking they were doing themselves a favor. Also, I got another thing wrong that I should correct: the longer the stride, the bigger your arm swing should be (and conversely the shorter your stride, the shorter and quicker your arm swing should be). Sorry, hope that didn't cause too much confusion. Okay, now onto the new questions...

Relevation! I thought it's more like sprint.

I wasn't a sprinter in track (mainly ran the 3200m, 1600m, with some 800m mixed in for flavor) but I'm almost positive that sprinters attain their speed by taking tons of fast strides. Like I mentioned at the beginning of this post, taking lots of strides is energy intensive. If you are running just 100m, 200m, or 400m (I pity 400m runners, not a fun race for a sprinter) you are taking as many (full) strides as possible so that you minimize distance between strides (where you lose speed).

Also, about balls of the feet. I never thought it's possible to run whole 5k on toes. Now I see that it is possible and is recommended =)))

Its something to shoot for. I know that I probably never ran a full 5k on the balls of my feet, but its correct running form and something you should be shooting for. However, you should be sure to use the best form you can muster for things like hills and kicks.


Well, you say effort. This means I should be getting as tired as in earlier stages even though it makes me slower on hills?

I'm still not sure what you mean by this but I'll try to clarify: you should shoot for even splits in your race in general, but on hills maintain the effort you had going into the hill on the hill, then as you go over the hill and it starts to level out you will be able to speed up and accelerate over the top of the hill. The whole "maintain effort" thing only works if you stay true to it and use it to speed up when you hit the top of the hill.

1. Is it good to drink lots of water before race when it's hot? I tried both ways and can't seem to understand whether it's good to be more hydrated or bad to have water bouncing in your body.

Instead of drinking lots of water before a race, focus on constantly hydrating. When I was running CC/track I could put back a gallon of water a day pretty easily. I would have 1L before lunch, one at lunch, one after lunch, then one after practice. If you can hydrate like that it shouldn't be much of a problem.

Everyone has their own pre-race routine. Some people don't eat anything the morning of a race, while some eat a full meal. The same applies to hydrating. You sort of have to figure out how much you can/should eat or drink the morning of a race. Sorry I can't give you a definite answer, but you are correct in that you can drink too much before a race.

2. Should I let my breathing adjust itself or try to adjust breath-in/breath-outs to steps manually?
Alongway, is it preferrable to keep slower but steady pace with no feeling of anaerobic activity or
increases/decreases in speed along with lack of oxygen?

I'm not really sure what you're asking in the second part of the question but as for this first: try to control your breathing so it is constant and relaxed. (Someone who has sprinting experience may want to make a suggestion for sprinting because I think that for sprinting you want to be taking in as much oxygen as possible, but like I said, I'm a distance runner.) Honestly, we didn't focus on breathing so much aside from just controlling it and taking even breaths. You don't want to be that guy huffing and puffing and struggling, but being able to control your breathing as you run harder has more to do with conditioning than it does simply telling yourself how to breathe.

3. What about running downhill? Same concept of having same effort as running up the hill?

Use the downhills to pass people if possible. Really lengthen your stride on them to take advantage of getting as much distance as you can from each stride in this case because if you lengthen your stride on a downhill you get a big payoff on speed/distance per stride per unit of energy used (does that make sense?). A lot of people will use downhills to rest and coast--if you really charge down them you can efficiently pass people by focusing on lengthening your stride on a downhill.

(Sorry that I seem sort of inconsistent here by saying that on hills you want to lengthen your stride to go faster, but because each step will be lower than the next, be lengthening your stride you can cover a lot of distance per stride, and also do so without expending as much energy as you would if you were taking shorter strides on the hill. Feel free to ask more about this if you want clarification.)

4. By the way, you said about bringing my knee to waist level. Is it good to bring knee as high as possible?
It seems like too much of a vertical movement for knee.
Also, would it be bad to let gravity take care of leg going down back to the earth where it came from?

Well you have to be reasonable--you shouldn't be bringing your knees up so high that it messes with the rest of your form. However, if you maintain a forward lean on the balls of your feet the high knees will help propel you forward.

5. Oh, and yeah, should I check out girls that walk nearby running track while I'm running or this must wait until the end of race?

As a runner you'll find that you are a natural chick magnet ( ;)) so you'll have plenty of time for that later. If you are serious about something then dedicate yourself to it.

Offline OmahaBeef

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #11 on: September 03, 2007, 09:08:32 PM »
I should mention that some of the hill running things I am talking about is running strategy. For instance, some people love to charge up hills and pass people on them. However, I'm just telling you how we did it. I should mention though that my coach in high school is a guy worth trusting. Our program won three D1 state titles in six years ('98, '00, '03).

Offline Makoa

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2007, 06:05:03 PM »
If checking out chics can take your mind off of running pain (though it may not be there at race start), look all you want.
About hydration, it is good to stay hydrated throughout the day, and recommended to hydrate yourself two hours before the race. I have also noticed that V8 juice is a better energy drink than Gatorade--much more sodium and potassium--and I think you should also eat a banana before your warmup. And remember, cold drink and warm core don't mix.

Pumping those arms during a race takes some load off your legs, but I find that it is usually my lungs that hurt, not my legs (not to discourage pumping, it's a good technique).

Remembering my first 5K race during freshman XC, I'll say it was not an easy race. Quite a bit of mental game, I think, because the course was filled with hills, and just when your sense of orientation tells you that you're coming full circle, there are more hills. My older running mates (I was drafted up to varsity for that race due to lack of runners) really pulled me through it and I appreciated it immensely. Somehow I was able to pull off a sprint finish and beat some of those teammates.

heh first post on APK and its not even parkour related. at least not directly.

Offline OmahaBeef

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #13 on: September 04, 2007, 07:57:28 PM »
If checking out chics can take your mind off of running pain (though it may not be there at race start), look all you want.
About hydration, it is good to stay hydrated throughout the day, and recommended to hydrate yourself two hours before the race. I have also noticed that V8 juice is a better energy drink than Gatorade--much more sodium and potassium--and I think you should also eat a banana before your warmup. And remember, cold drink and warm core don't mix.

Pumping those arms during a race takes some load off your legs, but I find that it is usually my lungs that hurt, not my legs (not to discourage pumping, it's a good technique).

Remembering my first 5K race during freshman XC, I'll say it was not an easy race. Quite a bit of mental game, I think, because the course was filled with hills, and just when your sense of orientation tells you that you're coming full circle, there are more hills. My older running mates (I was drafted up to varsity for that race due to lack of runners) really pulled me through it and I appreciated it immensely. Somehow I was able to pull off a sprint finish and beat some of those teammates.

heh first post on APK and its not even parkour related. at least not directly.

Heh, just imo but if you really want to succeed in something you have to physically and mentally devote yourself to it. Running is a very cerebral sport. If your mind isn't concentrating on what you are doing you will end up just drifting through your race/training without learning from the race, and succeeding in the race (compared to how you can do if you devote yourself both mentally and phsyically).

Offline OmahaBeef

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #14 on: September 04, 2007, 08:00:19 PM »
...and not to reply to myself (again) but this has to be my favorite quote about running:

"Nothing is so grand as running; it's simple, physical, and is one of the few things we can do in life that afterward feels like a worthy accomplishment."

(That's from a great runner from my high school's team who graduated in '01, and helped lead the team to the state title in '00 and later served in the Marines in Iraq.)

Offline chipset

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #15 on: September 04, 2007, 08:56:09 PM »
By the way, do you have to feel any pain? Or is preferrable to run fast, consistent but without pushing (like you would in 400/800 m sprint)?

Quote from: Makoa
Heh, just imo but if you really want to succeed in something you have to physically and mentally devote yourself to it. Running is a very cerebral sport. If your mind isn't concentrating on what you are doing you will end up just drifting through your race/training without learning from the race, and succeeding in the race (compared to how you can do if you devote yourself both mentally and phsyically).
Po
Well, I was sorta kidding  8) Not to mention my head is looking straight 10-15 feet or right below me and any glancing to the sides brings serious lack of oxygen.
By the way, how far ahead should you keep you sight?

Quote from: OmahaBeef
About hydration, it is good to stay hydrated throughout the day, and recommended to hydrate yourself two hours before the race. I have also noticed that V8 juice is a better energy drink than Gatorade--much more sodium and potassium--and I think you should also eat a banana before your warmup.
Would simple table sodium mixed with water do good? By the way, I don't drink gatorade at all.

Quote from: OmahaBeef
I'm not really sure what you're asking in the second part of the question ...
What I meant was: do you have to feel that you're out of oxygen or you're not running up to your full potential? I mean, do you have to endure lack of oxygen or only leg pain?
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Offline chipset

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #16 on: September 04, 2007, 09:02:11 PM »
Quote
"Nothing is so grand as running; it's simple, physical, and is one of the few things we can do in life that afterward feels like a worthy accomplishment."
Hey, running is one helluva great thing. Especially when you can run.
I really felt that I ran in 9th grade, during wrestling warm-up and since then I've been trying to run a dozen of miles each week. And now I'm trying to join the XC and bother people online to get even more emotions from flying. Seriously, running is more like flying :)

Quote from: Makoa
heh first post on APK and its not even parkour related. at least not directly.
Running IS parkour!
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Offline OmahaBeef

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #17 on: September 05, 2007, 01:12:34 PM »
By the way, do you have to feel any pain? Or is preferrable to run fast, consistent but without pushing (like you would in 400/800 m sprint)?
....
What I meant was: do you have to feel that you're out of oxygen or you're not running up to your full potential? I mean, do you have to endure lack of oxygen or only leg pain?

Getting good at running is all about pushing yourself to your breaking limit.

Our normal week in CC would consist of:
Monday: long run (8 miles)
Tuesday: short interval workout (as the season goes on, you do shorter intervals to work on speed until the race you want to peak for, these would start around doing like 6 x 1200m, then 5-6 x 1000m, eventually working down to doing a mix of 1200m, 1000m and 800m then pure 800m and 400m interval workouts at the very end of the season)
Wednesday: recovery run (6 miles)
Thursday: distance speed workout (we would often do a 4 mile timed run in which you are running a little slower than your race pace)
Friday: run a 5k (not race, just run the 3.1 miles) and stretch
Saturday: race!

You were almost always completely dead after Tuesday, Thursday and Saturdays. Some of the most painful experiences of my life have been in cross country workouts.

Offline Acewall

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2007, 05:18:10 PM »
Yeah I did cross country last year. I'm never doing it again, or I thought I wasn't. It was kinda fun, but it's so much work. I've always been a pretty fast runner, but never had much endurance. But after just that one season I actually felt healthier. But I read this thread last night, and was kind of inspired to run today (plus all my friends have school, I'm all alone). So I went outside with a bottle of water and my iPod, and I just ran. I ran around my neighborhood like 6.5 times (every two time around is a mile I think). Afterwards I felt great, I even went for a swim. So I was wondering is there any way to get back into shape for running CC pretty quickly? Oh and what are your 5k times/mile times?
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Offline Makoa

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Re: 5k run
« Reply #19 on: September 05, 2007, 05:58:28 PM »
Cross Country is one of the most honorable of sports, in my humble opinion. My XC cap made an impromptu speech and said that XC hurts. It is a very painful sport, but you feel great afterwards. We do it because that's what we're about. sweat and pain and honor. To get back into XC you must run and really run. Not sure of my 5k but my best mile is currently 5:37 and I can run a mile in 6:00 happily.

go back to XC you will be a better traceur at the least.
Exo asked two newcomers what their sport backgrounds were. One said MA, inline skating. The other said running. Exo told him he'd have an easier time adapting to PK because he had running form. And there ya go!