Understanding Interval Training

When Swedish physiologist Dr. Per Olaf Åstrand discovered in the 1960s on a stationary bicycle in the laboratory that if you take a set amount of physical work and break that work up into periods of work and rest, you can accomplish more work at the same or higher intensity, the interval training that runners […]

Do Runners Need to Strength Train?

  I was having a conversation with someone tonight at the track after the San Diego Track Club workout, and she brought up strength training as a way to become a better runner. This is not the first time someone has tried to convince me that runners need to strength train. I have written and spoken […]

The Best Explanation of How Running Slower Makes You Faster

  When I was a kid, I loved watching the TV sitcom, I Love Lucy. Lucille Ball was one in a million. There was a famous episode during which Lucy and her friend Ethel work at an assembly line, where they were assigned to wrap pieces of chocolate as they came down the conveyor belt. […]

Exercise and Your Brain

  When I wrote The Inner Runner, one of the things I wanted to address is how running changes us on the inside. Exercise doesn’t just affect the heart and muscles; it also affects the brain. It’s an interesting field of science called neuroplasticity—the ability of the brain to change. Running causes morphological and neurochemical adaptations […]

Einstein, Pyruvate, and Simplicity

I am often asked how to become a better runner. The answer is simple… and complex. As Albert Einstein said, “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.” So, in honor of Einstein (whom I share a birthday with), here is a simple explanation of how to become a better runner. Understand […]

Two Schools of Thought

“There are two schools of thought,” the college coach said to me seven years ago, as I watched the 800-meter runners run 200-meter reps on the track at 800-meter PR pace in November. She was referring to how to train middle distance and distance runners — with lots of speed training or lots of endurance […]

Miles, Metabolism, and Curveballs

As you probably know, I have been deeply interested in the science of athletic performance ever since I was a kid. One of the first scientific questions I had at a young age was how a baseball pitcher throws a curveball. It’s so cool how pitchers exploit the physics of aerodynamics to make the ball […]

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