Many athletes focus too much on short-term results and daily or weekly progress, often leading to a plateau or a rollercoaster of progress and regression. This week, we discuss the importance of having a vision and long-term objectives for your running journey. We highlight the significance of 'value capture', where the value of a goal tends to overshadow the reason for pursuing it. We also emphasize the concept of 'process over outcome', focusing on the steps required to reach the goal rather than just the goal itself. The podcast concludes with the importance of reverse engineering big goals into smaller steps and using 'training cycles' based on strength, mileage, speed, or maintenance to ensure continuous progress.
01:51 The Importance of Having a Long-Term Vision in Running
02:36 The Concept of Value Capture in Running
03:39 The Role of Vision in Sustainable Running
08:01 The Importance of Enjoying the Running Process
16:21 The Concept of Infinite Games in Running
23:12 The Importance of Training Cycles in Running
38:37 Conclusion: Running Your Life
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Are you playing the long game today in the podcast? We want to talk about seeing the long term view and how to train in a more sustainable way. Because so many runners focus on short term results. They focus on this race that I'm training for. They focus on this week. What am I doing this week? Or what am I doing today? If you're someone that hasn't followed a plan before, you're just thinking, okay, what am I going to do today? And it results in. Those runners not making the long term progress that they're looking for always on that plateau or always on that progress roller coaster where they make a little bit of progress and they come back down, they go back up and they come back down. And today we want to talk about how you can get off that roller coaster and make sustainable. Progress that will last in the longKevin:
I really like the the roller coaster idea of this because it's not quite a plateau Sometimes you feel like you're actually making a little progress But then you'd kind of fall back a little bit and then then you step back up You got another race and you get gung ho for it, but then you don't have one and you fall back off So getting off of that roller coaster, how do we just continue year upon year to continue to build? Can we just keep improving andAngie:
growing? Yeah, and today we want to talk about three main things, um, and three main ways for you to do this. The first thing we want you to think about is having a vision. And we want this vision to be more long term. So, we want you to kind of look at your running and think about What is the reason that you chose running? What do you want your running to look like? Kind of big picture, big vision, because I think that a lot of times we get stuck in the details. We get stuck in, okay, I'm training for this race, or this is the distance that I want to hit, or this is the pace that I need to be running right now. And we sometimes. Maybe, maybe we start running with this bigger vision. You're like, I want to get in better shape. I want to become stronger. I want to become healthier, but somewhere along the way, that vision starts to get a little bit cloudy or maybe even forgotten about. And they actually were talking about this on a podcast I was listening to the other day, they talked about this concept called value capture. And it was talking about how in anything where there is a value or a number assigned to something. We can often get so bogged down by the number that we forget why we actually started that thing in the first place. So one example that they gave was being a student and like you go to school to learn, say you go to, you choose to go to university and you want to learn more things and you want to get your degree and then somehow. That bigger vision gets clouded by your GPA, and then all of a sudden all you're concerned about is the GPA because that is what's being measured, and that's so applicable to running so many times we get into running, not because we want to run a two hour half marathon. But because we want to become healthier, we want to become stronger. We want to challenge ourselves, but somehow along that way, that big vision kind of gets lost because we are so focused on the details and the numbers and the value attached to something that we lose sight of that bigger. Vision. So,Kevin:
I mean, this vision is so big that it goes beyond any race. And what tends to happen is runners just go from one race to the next, to the next and, and feel like they're progressing even, you know, if you are, if you're objectively, the numbers are getting. You know, faster, it looks like you're making progress, but you've lost sight of the real big picture of why you got into this in the first place and what's going to make it a more sustainable thing for years and decades moving forward of what does running really do for you? That's, that's the big vision.Angie:
Well, not only what you want. What rain does for you? But how do you want your running to look? How do you want to feel in that? And is that the way you feel right now? You know, what do you want to be doing every day? And are you doing that thing now? Because again, sometimes we just get lost in the process. We get lost in. Okay, I said I had this vision. Now I'm going https: otter. ai Um, focused in on the details of that goal that I'm, don't even ask myself, like, am I even enjoying this anymore? Do I like what I'm doing every, every day? Am I feeling the way that I want to feel? Is all of that aligning with that vision that I started with?Kevin:
Well, yeah, it's it's putting on reading glasses and only being able to see the book directly in front of you, but not being able to see anything else in the room is you're so focused on the narrow aspect of this is I want to make sure that I'm good at my short term immediate goal in front of me that it's fine to do that. Like you can focus on the immediate goal if you have an upcoming race, but make sure that you also have the ability to step back and see the bigger picture and make sure that that race and the success of that race and your training for that race does fit into the bigger picture. You know, the way that I like to think about this was the difference between Angie and I making dinner. Like, I take drastically longer than she does to make dinner, because when I make dinner, it's, I, I have no idea why, but for some reason I can't keep multiple parts of the dinner in my head simultaneously. I'm like, alright, I'm going to make whatever the protein is for dinner, or I'm going to focus on, like, making potatoes as the side for dinner. And then I forget one of the other things. So we end up with like, some chicken thing created, but there's no side dishes to go with it. Angie is able to see all of the aspects of dinner simultaneously, and everything comes to the table at once, warm. I finish one and I'm like, oh wait! We need rice and that takes 45 minutes. I should probably start that soon. And everything else isAngie:
done. Well, and it leads to a very stressful cooking experience for you, too. Because a lot of times then, like, I so much appreciate when you cook dinner. That's such a fantastic thing. And I'll just come out and sometimes I'll say, Okay, honey, what are we having for dinner? And you are so stressed and so anxious about everything. You're like, well, I'm making this thing, but then I forgot about this thing over here. And you got so Kind of bogged down in the details of one thing that you forgot about the biggerKevin:
picture right and like the more nuanced and detailed, the one aspect of, oh, I'm, I'm pulling out a new recipe for this new chicken thing that we're doing, and I completely forgot to make any sides for it because it was new and exciting, and so I forgot the whole, we need all the parts ofAngie:
dinner. And then you just end up disappointed. in the whole process, which is such a shame because the dinner oftentimes turns out very delicious. Or sometimes IKevin:
just cover it in cheese. Yeah,Angie:
I mean, that's usually your go to. It's like if Kevin's cooking dinner, it's going to be a casserole covered in cheese. That's the girls know that. And they make, and it makes the girls happy. And they love it. That's for sure. But it's true though. Like it's sometimes we. Kind of forget about that big vision when we get bogged down in the details now We want you to understand that the details are important and we're going to talk about that in part three But we have to make sure that those details fit into our bigger vision because if not then a lot of times there can be some from Frustration, some disappointment, some, um, sadness along the way. Like oftentimes, like you just seem sad, you do like, you just seem sad sometimes. SoKevin:
you're like, I'm going to go cry in the corner.Angie:
I'm like, I'm like, It's good. Um, okay. The second thing we want you to think about. So after you have that big vision or kind of just touch base with that big vision of what that thing should be or what you want it to be. We want you to understand this concept of process over outcome, and we've talked about this before on the podcast, but so many runners focus on only on the goal without thinking about the processes needed to get there. Now there's kind of a heads and tails. There's there's two sides of the coin here because there are sometimes that it's really good for you to just focus on the goal, just focus on the big vision and then figure it out as you go. Because. Sometimes we get so bogged down on trying to figure out how we're going to accomplish a thing that it can stop us from even starting and it can slow us down along the way. Sometimes we do need to just get into action and we do need to just start doing the thing, but that's not how We actually get to that goal long term. Like there has to be some planning and some processes along the way.Kevin:
Yeah, you need the planning and processes, but sometimes you start planning out all of the steps that you're going to need to accomplish. And it seems like there's too many. And so instead of just picking one of them to be step one, you get so overwhelmed with like, well, there's 15 things that need to do. I'm going to do none of them. And so that's part of like, just enjoy the big picture of making sure that your training is actually looking like what you want it to look, but you do need to actually have some. Process going on here and not just having that that single goal out there YeahAngie:
Because a lot of times people will start running because they set a goal of wanting to run a marathon or wanting to run a half Marathon, they have it as a bucket list type of item and they don't realize everything that actually goes into achieving that goal They just say okay Well, that just means I'm gonna have to run a lot And once they actually get into it, they realize, Oh wait, there's a lot more to marathon training than just running. I have to also eat more and I have to sleep more and I have to strength train and why is my body sore all of the time? Like there's all these other things that come in. And when that happens, when you don't think about the process and you're only thinking about that goal, it oftentimes leads to people not enjoying the process and not feeling motivated. They, this is where a lot of people tend to lose motivation, and they think that they just need more, more motivation to, to actually do the thing. But in reality, they're not motivated because they're not enjoying the process that they've chosen to put themselves into.Kevin:
Right. And so then it goes one step further than that. If you're not enjoying the process, you're like, all right, but if I can just get through this and reach the goal, then that's going to be amazing. And so then you've got this whole arrival issue of once you finally do run the marathon or you do break two hours in the half marathon, you expect to be like a completely new person, but you're not, you're the same person just with a different time as your PR or whatever it is. And you're still not suddenly satisfied with your running because you didn't enjoy any of the steps along the way. So you have to plan out that process and make sure that the way that you're training is an enjoyable thing for you. If you're like, well, these are the steps that I'm going to need to take to get towards that goal. And I don't want to do any of those steps. You might need to rethink how much you're going to enjoy the goal. Yeah. And IAngie:
think that that's really important because. There's a lot of different ways that you can be a runner. Not all runners have to run a marathon. Not all runners have to run a half marathon. You might be someone that's really happy doing 5ks and that should be your goal. You know, maybe your goal is to get a faster 5k. Maybe your goal is just to run as many 5ks as you can this year. There's so many different ways that you can do it and one size does not fit all. So what is going to allow you to enjoy the process? As well as the outcome, right? Because if you're not enjoying the process, then is the outcome something that you really want in the first place? You know, I think about this with me, with going to PT school and becoming a physical therapist, I did a lot of research. So I was premed, had a double major in undergrad, premed in psychology, and I, my senior year of college, I decided that I didn't want to go on to med school. I did not want to apply to med school. It didn't feel right to me and I didn't know what else I wanted to do. And so I took some, I took a year off to kind of search and do research and volunteer and figure out what my next step was going to be. And in that process, I found the field of physical therapy and it sounded great to become a physical therapist. I did some shadowing and volunteer work. It looked like I would enjoy those types of day to day things when I was shadowing those therapists. The PTs that I talked to all love their job. Love. They were able to help people every day. There were PTs and lots of different fields. You could work in orthopedics, you could work in the hospital, you could work in pediatrics. And knowing myself and my tendency to get bored with things, I was like, perfect. I could do different things here. If I decided to go into one area and maybe got bored with it and didn't like it again, you know, I could just move into a different setting. Right? So the idea of becoming a physical therapist. was fun. I like that. So that was the outcome. But then also the process of going to physical therapy school and learning everything that I was learning in P. T. school. I enjoyed that. Like I enjoyed what I was learning about for the most part. Of course, there was, there were some classes that were not my favorite, but in general, I loved learning about the human body. I love learning about the way the body works, how the brain works, how everything is connected. It's like there's, there was so much in physical therapy school that I really loved learning about. So I both chose the outcome that I wanted and then also tried to understand the process to get there was also something that I was going to enjoy along the way. Yeah.Kevin:
I mean, and we can make sure that we tie this thing back into running of what is that outcome that you're chasing and then how, how am I going to go about getting to it? You know, you gave the example of, well, I'm going to run a marathon, so I just need to keep running more and more and more, but that's not exactly what you need to do to run a marathon. You could try it and just keep increasing your mileage, but you're probably going to get hurt before you get to 26 miles. You need to make sure that you increase your strength before you start ramping up your mileage so much. If you'd like to run a fast marathon. If you want to like go out and race a marathon, you're gonna need to have some real solid base level speed, which means you need a pretty fast five K first. So you want to work on some speed and then build in some mileage. And then before you crank the mileage too much, then make sure you've got some strength built into there. And then, well, we can't lose any speed. And it's a cycle of all these things of. I've got all of these steps that I want to make sure that I do in order to actually reach my big goal of running a marathon. And some people are like, well, I don't really like all the speed stuff. So can I, can I go for a marathon and not do all the speed? And it's like, well, sure. It's just not going to be the fastest marathon, but you, you could focus on building mileage, building strength, and you could get there. Like, okay, well, I want to. I want to run. I really like the speed, but I don't like doing all the higher mileage. Okay, well then maybe Running a marathon is not the outcome for you you want something that you make sure that you enjoy all the steps of the process to train for a longer race and to try And get a fast time you need all of those steps along the way so you have to kind of have some enjoyment to ThemAngie:
yeah, and I think that that's important is really being honest with yourself and say what do I actually enjoy doing? You know what do I want? my day to day life in running to look like. What do I want that plan to look like? Am I gonna have a lot of speed work? Am I gonna love those long, slow distance runs? Because everybody likes different things when it comes to running. And like Kevin said, it. To have a, when you have a balanced training plan, you are likely going to need all of it. It's just a matter of what ratios that you're going to have, you know, it's like how much speed work, how much distance and how much of that is the stuff that you actually enjoy. And maybe. It's really important to you to run a marathon, and you're not a big fan of distance, but for some reason you just have this desire, just understand that, okay, for that cycle, you might not enjoy it as much, but if the goal means a lot to you, then you're willing to go through the process in order to get to that outcome. And the other, like, thing I like to think about when it comes to running and this idea of process over outcome, There is a great book that I read, um, called The Infinite Games by Simon Sinek, and he actually took the concept from someone else. I forget that person's name, but essentially he talks about this idea and this concept of finite versus infinite games, and How oftentimes we try to measure success in finite terms as like a win or a lose type of thing. But if you're playing an infinite game, then infinite games have different rules. They don't, there is no win or lose there. The goal like success is Being able to continue to play the game. So there are wins along the way, but the goal is ultimately to stay in the game. And I, that's how I see running. The goal is for me to be able to run as long as I possibly can, because I want to stay strong. I want to stay healthy. I don't like to feel limited in my body. And that means that I need to take a slower approach to my progress. I don't want to go out and destroy my body every day because I'm not trying to go out and win an Olympic. gold medal. I'm not trying to push the envelope right to the brink of where, Oh my gosh, I might get hurt because my mileage is so high in my speed. Like my training load is really high right now. I might not be able to sustain this. That doesn't sound fun for me because there are so many other things that I want to do in my life and my running and my health is a part of it, but it's something that I want to do for the long term. It's something that I want to do for as long as I possibly can. So I'm playing a very infinite game with our running and sometimes when we get too outcome oriented, when we think just about the races and just about those short term goals, we kind of lose sight of that.Kevin:
Yeah. And then you start leaning into trying to hit all the things and, and don't get me wrong, the balanced training plan needs the strength and the mileage and the speed. But if you're trying to do too much of all of them, it gets a little overwhelming and kind of gets you to that point of either physical or mental breakdown. And like you said, in a balanced training plan, maybe you have some aspects that you don't necessarily Enjoy, you know, when you talk about the infinite game, it's hard to not use the example of parenting as an infinite game And there are certainly aspects of parenting that are not necessarily the most enjoyable I think potty training was one of those just it's not it's not a current thing it just when I think of the various games that we had to play throughout the infinite game of parenting That is one that comes up of that might not have been my favorite aspect of it But it's one that's gonna come up You can't just ignore that one like you have to go through this thing, but parenting is a wonderful infinite game The goal is not I've I've Continue to keep this human alive for 18 years. Now get them out of the house. Like that's not the goal of parenting. The goal is to continue to parent them through life. That's kind of, I think, a good exampleAngie:
there. Yeah, and your parenting is going to change and different phases are going to look much, much different. Like the potty training phase looks much different than our current phase of tween and teenager. But they still require a lot of us and a lot of patience. AKevin:
lot of patience. Both requireAngie:
patience. For a lot different reasons. And then when they grow up and, you know, leave home, which I, I, I know is gonna be here before, like, I even realize it. There's crying in all the stages. So much crying. Um, they're still going to need us just in different ways, and it's like the same thing with us where we are right now. Luckily, you know, we are both blessed to still have our parents here, and we both still want and need our parents around, just in much different ways. And that's kind of with the same with running. You know, your running might look different in different phases of your life. Maybe you go through a very competitive phase of your running where you're really focused on Hitting those times and those paces and getting as fast as you possibly can and then maybe you shift over into Distance, you know, I want to build my distance I know that's kind of what your journeys look likeKevin:
great But you still can't get rid of the speed aspect of your training like you can't be like well now I'm just gonna run really really far and I'm never gonna worry about doing anything fast again because doing fast things on occasion over short distances is still going to actually be beneficial to your overall health. And that's part of the big vision of I want to be a really healthy person for a long, longAngie:
time. Yeah. And actually, I'm really glad that you point that out because there's some really good research that's coming out that. says how important speed is, especially for women as we get older, but really for all of us, because speed work helps to maintain lean muscle mass and helps to stimulate those type two muscle fibers, which are the types of muscle fibers that we tend to lose more naturally with age. So we need to do things that are going to help us. Keep those fast twitch muscle fibers because those things are the ones that help us most with balance and reaction time. And those are very important as we get older, just for our health and longevity. Yeah.Kevin:
And I like, um, the story was years and years back that someone did the testing on Alberto Salazar of like the, the fast twitch to slow twitch muscle fibers. And he was like some ridiculous percentage of slow twitch. And that's why he was so good at running a marathon. But. You need enough of those fast twitch guys to go that as you start adding on some decades of life, if you trip on a step, you trip on a stick, you're able to quickly react and not just go tumbling down that you can catch yourself, that you can brace yourself before you even fall. Or if you're falling, you can get your hands down and support yourself and stabilize yourself. And a simple trip does not, you know, dislocate a hip.Angie:
Exactly. So when we think about. Are running as this infinite game, and we have this vision. Now we have this vision. We have these outcomes that we want to have for ourself. We have this life that we have in our brain of like the way we want our life to look. And then we think about the process to get there. Part of the process are taking that the That's it. Those big goals and that big vision and breaking it down into smaller steps so that we can have a better chance of actually getting there, right? Because it's one thing to say, yes, I have this big vision, but it's another thing to actually figure out how to get there. And the way that you do this is through this process that we teach called reverse engineering. And I'm sure that there's plenty of other ways to do this, but this is the way we like to teach our clients to do it. Right. Which is to take that big goal and break it down into smaller goals along the way, so that when you put those smaller goals together, it leads us and gets us closer to that bigger, bigger goal. And that takes us to the concept of training cycles. Okay. When we think about playing the long game and having that long term view of. Becoming a sustainable runner, having, being able to run as long as you want to be able to run for one of the best ways to do this is through this concept of training cycles. So a lot of times what we see is, you know, runners just will have that one race goal and they'll go out and they'll hit that goal and then they'll kind of flounder for a while and not really have an idea of what to do next. And so they'll just kind of run a little bit here and there. Maybe they. They keep running, maybe they don't keep running and it ends up detraining them. So they actually lose the progress. A lot of the progress that they made during that race training cycle. And then they have to kind of start over again. And it's not, they're not starting from scratch. You know, your body still remembers a lot of this. You're never going back to square one, but going back to that progress rollercoaster, we were talking about before you have this whole phase of training, the cycle where you train for that race. And then there is going to be a natural dip. Right there. You're not going to just stay at that level forever, like a natural progress cycle does have ups and downs. You're just trying not to make it as Um, significant as, as, uh, long, uh, as large of a drop. I know I don't like big drops when it comes to roller coasters.Kevin:
Yes, you do not like the big drops. I mean, I think of like, I used to teach biology class and they had that picture of homeostasis in your body temperature. And it was like the straight line of what your body temperature was supposed to be. And sometimes it would go a little bit above the line and then it would dip a little bit below the line. And this tends to be what some people do with their training cycle is they've got their fitness at like a level and sometimes they boost a little bit high because they train up for a race and then they kind of lose their focus of running and they dip a little bit below the line. They're like, Oh, wait, I should sign up for a race again and they boost boost a little bit above the line, but essentially they're bouncing up and down over a flat line and that's. That's the rollercoaster that's not getting you anywhere. Like I, I love the rollercoasters. Give me the part where it just keeps climbing. That seems exciting. And eventually you're going to have to go down and that's where the training metaphor loses it. But so many people are just going up and down and up and down, but essentially going in a straight line. And that's not fun for long termAngie:
growth. And that's where a lot of people feel like they've reached their ceiling. You know, maybe I just won't be able to make any more progress. And that's, it's because you're not looking at. Your training with that long term vision and then trying to build training cycles in to help support that long term vision. Okay. So what we want you to understand is that training cycles can, they can be different lengths. We tend to teach a 90 day training cycle in our academy because that's a really great length of time for a lot of different goals. But again, it can vary based on what those goals are, but you want to make sure that you work choosing a specific goal for each cycle. So each 90 day cycle or eight week cycle or 16 week cycle, however you want to break it up, should have one main goal. And there's four main goals that you can choose. Number one is strength. Two, mileage, three, speed, or four, maintenance, okay? So, whatever training cycle you are currently in, you should know what is my primary focus. And so many times when our clients come in to the academy, we'll ask them this question, well, what is your focus for the next 90 days? And they're like, I want to do it all. You know, I want to build my mileage and my speed and all of the things all at the same time. And while you kind of can do that, It's not going to be the most effective and most efficient way of building yourself up So we still even if you are trying to build up multiple things at the same time You still want to know which one's the primary? So is it strength mileage speed or maintenance? And yes, maintenance isKevin:
a cycle yeah, and the the issue of trying to simultaneously hit strength and mileage and speed all at the same time is It, it climbs you off of your current fitness point real quickly and the faster you climb, the more difficult it is to sustain that climb and you lead to exhaustion and this part where you're like, Ooh, I don't know if I can do this anymore. And instead of moving into like maintenance, people move into nothing and they slide back down towards where their fitness used to be. And if you just pick a goal, it's a slower build. And this is the thing is everybody wants to get to the outcome really, really quickly. If you can take a step back and enjoy the process and say, all right, I'm going to build some strength. And then after that, I'm going to build some mileage on top of my strength. I'm going to maintain my strength and build some mileage onto it. And then I'm going to throw some speed on top of that. And you can then cycle back and say, now I'm going to increase my strength. We'll maintain these other things. You can just keep growing. Then it's small growth along the way, but continuous growth. It just keeps climbing up.Angie:
Yeah, I was on a coaching call today with one of my coaches and I really like the metaphor that he uses he he said, you know, if you have a ladder and you're trying to climb up this ladder, but you notice that the rungs are four feet apart. Is it going to be easy for you to climb that ladder or is it going to be kind of challenging? And the answer is it's going to be kind of challenging, right? But this is what so many of us are trying to do versus having a ladder where the rungs are only one foot apart. That's going to be much easier to climb that ladder, right? You're going to get, you're going to be able to climb that ladder more, like more quickly. Along the way, right? But like when you look at the big picture, but we think that we're not making as much progress But really it's going to make the journey much much easier But so many of us are trying to progress in whatever area of our life in this case Are running by trying to jump and make these four foot jumps along the ladder when if we just continue to take the one foot Rungs one after the other after the other, it's going to lead us to our goal a lot faster and probably a lot easier becauseKevin:
you keep lunging for the four foot step and you keep missing and lunge and miss and lunge and miss and lunge fall off the ladder. Hurt yourself where and now you're, you're still at the first step. Somebody else took the next one and then the next one and the next one. And well, you're still leaping because you're like, man, I need to, I need to get as good as that person. So I can't. Yeah. I can't do slow progress. I need to get there and I need to get there now. So you keep lunging towards a step that's a little bit too far away. The slower process is going to get you there. It's just going to take a little bit more time, but it turns out lunging never gets you there because you keep missingAngie:
the step. Well here's the thing is that Will it actually take more time in our head? It will. Right. Cause like in our head, we see that forefoot jump and we're like, Oh, let's do it. Right. Like, yes, I'm going to go with, I'm going to go hard. I'm going to. sprint up and jump and try to reach and grab that thing. But if we actually take that step back, if we just continue to make that one foot progress, we actually might get to the goal faster because there will be a lot less setbacks along theKevin:
way, right? And then Instead of having to have these down cycles where you do this, like drastic D training where you're injured, you're completely burnt out. You can't even like get the motivation and all the internal, whatever it is, the drive to get you out the door, you're just taking downtime and you literally are D training. You're spiraling backwards on this thing. If, if you go, I'm going to build some strength and some speed, and then I'm going to just, I'm going to have a maintenance cycle. I'm going to take a couple of months and just stay where I am. You can hold. where you're at. Instead of having to pull back on that thing, you could just have a period of time where you're like, I'm just going to gain some comfort at this level. And now that horizontal line that you keep bouncing above and below has been raised. Now the horizontal line, your homeostasis, if you will, is at a new place. You've raised the bar, your baseline, your baseline. Is increased. You lifted the floor instead of trying to just keep slamming up against the ceiling. You literally lifted the floor. If you keep lifting the floor, eventually you've reached the ceiling and you can push that higher and then you raise the floor a little bit more and you can keep pushing higher and higher. That's super, super helpful. Hey, um, one of the examples that I came up with in trying to come up with to discuss this is teaching math. A few years ago, I was simultaneously, over the course of a day, I would teach Algebra 1 and Geometry and Precalculus. And the one class that I was the most worried about at the beginning of the year, like before school started, I was the most nervous for Algebra 1. Because I knew if I screwed up at the Algebra 1 students, they were going to be in trouble for Geometry and Algebra 2 and Precalculus. They may never even get to Precalculus because it's the foundation. And if, if you come in and you enter high school and you're like, I want to be an engineer, so I want to make sure that I can do the Calculus. And you try and come in and just do Calculus, you're in trouble. Because if you don't have the basis of how algebra works, and how you can literally move these letters around like magic, as my kids like to say, um, then you're, you're not actually going to be able to make the steps. You can't start at level three, level four, level five. You have to start wherever you are, and slowly progress, and you will get to those things. Trying to leap ahead of where you actually are is not a shortcut, it's just a path to not actually get there.Angie:
Yeah, and I think that that's why it's really important for you to know the goal, have that big vision and then try to minimize the distractions along the way, specifically for that 90 day goal for that training cycle goal, because we are constantly getting distracted by the new and shiny objects or this workout or this new training plan. Or, you know, you should come and try these shoes over here. Or I've got this brand new strength workout for you over here so you can get stronger and like It's so easy to get distracted by everything that we have coming at us on an everyday basis. Maybe it's in your email inbox. Maybe you get a ton of different running newsletters. Maybe it's on social media. You follow a bunch of different runners or running coaches out on social media. And they're all telling you different things. It's very hard. I shouldn't say it's very hard, but it we need to stay focused and we need to be able to trust the process. That's one of the biggest challenges of this idea of having these training cycles is understanding like this is part of the process. I'm right now. I'm just Laying down a layer. You know, you went to math. I went to food because Super Bowl Sunday is coming up this weekend. And so I thought about seven layer dip. You know, you have to lay that foundation first. You got to put down the refried beans or the black beans, whatever you're using for that foundation. And then you put down the tomatoes and the cheese and the lettuce and the sour cream and the guacamole, like all those different layers. And If you do one before you're finished with the other, it's just going to be one big mess. It'll still taste good because it's seven layer dip. But, ultimately, if you're trying to build a seven layer dip, you've got to finish one layer before you start the next one. Before you really work on The next thing.Kevin:
Yeah. Otherwise it's not a seven layer dip. It's just, it looks like my dinner. It's a casserole. It's a casserole. It's a Kevin casserole. There's definitely cheese in it and it's going to throw that thing in the oven and let'sAngie:
have this. And it could be delicious. And the same thing with your training, like your training might be fine. If you're like mix all these things together, it just might not be the progress that you're looking for. It might not have that intended result that you're trying to go for.Kevin:
Right. And this is the thing is training just kind of needs a mix of all this stuff to optimize your training for like a specific goal. You want to make the balance and hit the ratios right on on certain like speed versus strength versus distance. You got to balance it with your own training history and stuff. But There's a reason and a structure to it. And within a particular training cycle, you want to stick to whatever the reasoning was that you had at the start of the cycle. Don't be 30 days into a 90 day cycle and be like, you know what? I actually, now I'm going to just really crank up my, my volume. No, stick with whatever it is that you're going for, because you had a reason. Why this was going to be your 90 day cycle. And there was some reason why you set it up the way that you did. So stay with that reasoning, run the cycle through, and then on the next one, if you're all excited for mileage, use the cycle that you just finished and turn into one that builds up the mileage a little bitAngie:
more. Yeah. We had a really great discussion last week in our, inside of our academy, we have weekly live coaching calls, and one of our members asked about. Wanting to run longer than her plan. Told her to because she's currently on a strength cycle like she's currently the goal is to build strength But she wanted to increase her mileage and I said well Which one is the the primary goal and she said well the goal is strength and I said well then it's important for you to follow the plan as is because When you increase your mileage at the same time that you're doing strength work Endurance running and long distance running can actually blunt the effect of strength training. You're actually working against yourself here and you're not going to be gaining the full benefit of your strength work. If you just continue to run at a certain, you know, level and, um, trying to increase your mileage as well as. Do doing this strength work at the same time and she was like, oh, I didn't know that like I definitely don't want that Cuz here we are putting in all this hard work You want to reap the benefits of that hard work and so many times we don't realize that we are actually working against ourselves Because again, so many of us have that more is better mentality If I just do more strength training if I just run longer mileage that I'm just going to improve quicker I'm going to be better off in the process, but that's actually not the case you actually make You know, more sustainable and more effective progress if you break up your training into training cycles. So, this is a concept that we teach inside the academy. If that's something that's interesting to you, you can get on the wait list. Uh, enrollment is currently closed, but we will be opening up enrollment for the academy at the end of the month. So, if you head over to Real life runners. com forward slash academy. You can get on our wait list so that you can be the first to know when the doors are open at the end of February. Um, because this is a really, really important concept and most runners aren't doing this in their training.Kevin:
Yeah. I mean the, the ability to logically stack one cycle to the next so that your training continues to grow. There's no reason why your training needs to just. Climb and dip and climb and dip it can climb and steady and climb and steady or it could climb and Climb and climb and then maybe take a steady But those steady ones this way having a maintenance cycle is super important because then you don't have to always have that I finished my race. I have to have a dip. I have to have this Long term recovery, or you don't just climb until you're so exhausted that recovery is thrust upon you because now you're hurt or burnt out. So the, the logical following a good path and building one cycle into the next for extended, I'm going to say exponential growth, that's going to be a goodAngie:
plan. That is a good plan. So if you guys found this episode helpful, please head over to Apple Podcasts and leave us a review. You can also leave us a review on Spotify and hit that share button, share it with a friend that might find this helpful as well. And as always, thank you for joining us. This has been the Real Life Runners Podcast, episode number 345. Now get out there and run your life.