Find Yourself Looking Over Your Shoulder As You Train??

Posted by Beth Hartman

So, how about it? Are you an early riser or an after work fitness enthusiast? Either way, this time of year, no matter when you get out to train, and I mean running, through the streets, or for some of us, we find the peace and quiet, of a local cemetery, is as good a place as any to tackle some people free paths.  Yes, I said cemetery's  You can usually dial it up a notch by going up and down the hills that usually make up this tranquil resting place. Tranquil, it may be, but maybe a little eerie this time of year as well with Halloween right around the corner. Be honest, running early in the morning or early evening can sometimes make you feel just a little bit uncomfortable. We have all had that “hair on the back of our neck”, starting to rise feeling, right?

Well, sometimes that’s a good way to generate some extra speed or spring in your step to get you out of that particular area and into a better lit place where you feel a little more comfortable.

Seriously though, now is a great time of year, with it being the fall season, to take part in a local run, or ½ marathon that seems to pop up everywhere this spooky season. In fact, according to a “Running USA” survey, Halloween is now the 2nd most popular holiday running time, second only to Thanksgiving! So now is a great time to get on your smartphone or tablet, and do a little searching to see what’s available nearby that you can take part in. Most occur on this coming Saturday, but there are events scheduled on Sunday as well, this Halloween weekend.

As always, anyone who takes their running seriously, keeps track of how well they do, against their distance levels and the time it takes them to get there. The advantage of taking part occasionally in a timed “Fun” running event is that you can gauge your performance against how well you do compared to others who are running around you. I’ts always good to put yourself up against some competition so that you have a visible objective in front of you that you can concentrate on to see just how well you really are doing. Sometimes we get a little complacent when we run solo. We can get ourselves into a stagnant running routine and talk ourselves into a “half-truth” that, yes, we just finished our run of the day and our time is about the same as always. So I guess I’m doing all right, after all, I didn’t lose any time right? Well, that is correct, but you may not be pushing yourself as hard as you should be doing in order to get yourself to a “Next Plateau” level either!

Running in events that take place throughout the year is a good way to see just how well you really are doing against some competition. One way to improve yourself while your training is keeping constant records of your time, exertions (heart rate), naturally your distance and seeing how many calories you're burning during this type of work out. A good fitness tracker can do this for you and one like the Garmin Vivosmart 3 HR  With this type of activity monitor, you're able to track everything you need from heart-rate (thanks to Elevate wrist heart rate monitoring), steps, distance, calories burned, floors climbed, distance traveled, intensity minutes, and VO2 max.

So it a great tool to provide you with the right data so you know just how well you're doing all the time, even when you get to the gym for some strength training. Which is important enough that we’re going to do another blog post just on that. The importance of strength training to a runner.

So how about it, you up for a little ghoulish fun? After all, a lot of the Halloween running events that are taking place allow you to dress up as your favorite spooky monster, demon, or TV celebrity, whatever puts a smile on your face, and maybe your racing companions.

So, get on that smartphone, do a little searching and get yourself registered for some Halloween running fun. Once you do this, you’re going to look forward to taking part in another one again, and again. And don’t forget, with Thanksgiving coming up fast, (Remember, this is the “Top Dog” in holiday themed racing events), you're going to be able to pick and choose which event you can take part in to see if you’re moving your personal training bar farther ahead!

Me, I think, I’ll be making myself up as zombie from the ‘Walking Dead” series… Just can’t get enough of that show…..but you can forget about the staggering zombie gait...

I’m looking to finish with a great time, how about BOOO?


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