This blog page will offer tips and answer questions about the Sedona Marathon Event, running at elevation, training tips and more. If you have a question about running, running at 4,500' elevation or other questions on improving your training regimen, send them to Adam Gifford, owner of Sedona Running Company at firstname.lastname@example.org
December 28, 2016 The Hills have thighs
Dear Coach, I already have a few marathons under my belt (Chicago, New York, Phoenix) but I have never run one with as many hills as Sedona. What is your recommendation(s) for how to handle this type of terrain? Sincerely, Ralph, San Diego, CA
Hey Ralphie-boy, You know you’re in for a tough day when the course profile looks a lot like Artie Lange’s EKG reading. Running a hilly marathon course is a lot like college…it will usually take longer than you think AND it will be one of the most enjoyable things you will ever accomplish. The first thing to remember is that you will most likely not set a PR on a course like the Sedona Marathon (it is possible, just not likely). So with that in mind you may want to set your time goals accordingly; or better yet, don’t set a time goal at all and just enjoy the experience and the beauty of the course (there’s LOTS of that). In order to minimize your discomfort throughout the race you will want to train on hills if possible. Hill training will help your body get used to the increased heart rate that you will have on the ascents. It will also help your body get used to the muscle pounding that your legs will feel on the descents. If you don’t have access to hills then speedwork and weight training can be a suitable substitute.
When you hit the climbs you will want to shorten your stride a bit and slow your cadence (that’s the number of times your foot hits the ground) so that your heart rate doesn’t get too high. You can either use a heart rate monitor to help you through this or just go off of feel (your body will let you know when your heart rate is getting too high). On some of the longer climbs it is best not to look at the top of the climb; just look down in front of you and try to let your mind wander…the hill will be over before you know what happened.
On the descents most people have a tendency to spread out their stride and try to run as fast as they can so they can make up the time from the slower ascents. This approach tends to lead to premature fatigue and increased soreness. Your muscles break down more from downhill running than they do from uphill running (eccentric muscle contraction versus concentric muscle contraction for all of you science geeks out there) so it pays to take the descents slower during the first half of the race. If you want to make up some time on the descents then keep your stride short and increase your cadence. You will most likely find that you can run at a faster speed while keeping down your heart rate.
Finally, if you want to get a feel for the hills then you will definitely want to take part in one or more of the free training runs that we will be hosting. These runs will be held on the marathon course. The details of these free training runs are posted on this marathon web page.
Thanks!!! Coach Adam
October 28, 2016 Three Months Out
We are officially three months out from the big day. Are you where you need to be? That's actually not a rhetorical question. It's a question that you should really ask yourself and make plans accordingly. This should help to organize some of your thoughts and point you in the right direction.
If you want to participate in one of the events and haven't already registered then YOU NEED TO REGISTER. One of the best ways to hold yourself accountable to a training plan is to register for an event, write in in your calendar and tell your friends and family what you will be doing. If you are traveling you should already have your travel plans booked. Hotels near the race venue are filling fast and airline tickets are only going to get more expensive. Finalize your travel plans if you already haven't.
If you have a goal time in mind for any of the events you should have a specific training plan in place to help you reach that goal. There are hundreds of resources online to help you customize a training plan for your individual needs.
If you are new to running you should have your next shoe purchase planned. Figure out how many miles you will be covering in your training and determine whether or not you will need new shoes before race day. You don't want to by them too early and have them break down before the big day. You also don't want to buy them too late and not have enough miles in them prior to the race.
Register, book travel, and get training. With all this in place the only thing you will need to do on the event day is show up and have fun.
Please visit www.VisitSedona.com for travel and lodging information; or to order a free Visitors Guide. Featuring four races - the 5K, 10K, Half Marathon and Full Marathon - participants of all ages are welcome. Walkers are encouraged in the 10K and 5K only due to time limitations.
Come to the Sedona Marathon Event and be part of a rich tradition of healthy, sustainable living in one of the most beautiful places in America!
Introducing Coach Adam, Official Sedona Marathon Event Training Coach
Coach Adam Gifford, owner of the Sedona Running Company, is the Official Race Coach for the Sedona Marathon Event. Coach Adam has been a sponsored athlete since 2007 and is currently a member of the prestigious La Sportiva Mountain Running Team.
His current sponsors include: La Sportiva, Greenlayer Sports, 1st Endurance, Petzl, Ultimate Direction, Julbo Sunglasses, and Defeet.
Other cool stuff about Adam: - Owner of Premier Endurance Coaching, LLC (www.premierendurance.com) - USATF Track & Field Coach - Level 1 - USAC Cycling Coach - Level 3 - Member of the prestigious La Sportiva Mountain Running Team - Product tester for Brooks Running - Product tester for Popular Outdoor Outfitters - Completed over 40 ultramarathons including a number of 100-mile finishes - Completed over 50 road and trail races in distances between 5k and marathon - Completed over 20 triathlons including 2 iron distance finishes
Coach Adam will answer your questions about training, give you the inside scoop on the Sedona Marathon course, keep you updated on Sedona's running scene and provide training tips in this blog. Whether your training for your first race, or looking to shave a few minutes off your PR, Adam will help.