January Running Challenge – Week 4

by Andy Amick on January 30, 2012

in Running

January Running Challenge for a cyclist

This is the last report for the challenge and I’ll be back to cycling, camping, and paracord projects.


The Challenge

For the month of January, the original challenge is to run 28 miles, but as a friend from college always says “Go big or go home” so I’m going big, well bigger.  The 28 miles will remain the goal, but that goal is now for the final week of January rather than the entire month.  With my luck, that will be with 10 degree temps and snow on 4 of the 7 days.  But that is the challenge and I’ll live with it.

On to the final week’s results.


Week 4 – Blowing The Doors Off

I made it!  It was tough but I made it and even had an extra couple of miles for fun!

The plan for the week hinged on a long run on Thursday.  I managed to bust out a 12.8 mile run when my longest to date had been 6.2 miles.  On Friday, my shoulders and knees were sore, but pain is temporary, right?  After mile 7 I could feel my legs, especially my calves, getting tired.  But I knew that would happen on such a long run, just like it happens on long rides.  As long as you have the mindset for a long run and some suffering, it’s really not that bad.


Would I run 13 miles each week?  No way, but I don’t do a 60 mile bike ride each week either.



Running Challenge statistics for week one

Runs during the week – 5 with the longest being 12.8 miles

Weekly mileage – 29.8 miles

Total January mileage – 56.7 miles


Overall Feeling

After week one, all systems go


Things I Learned

1) Running clothing is much simpler than cycling clothing.

If you are already a cyclist, a lot of your running clothes can be borrowed from the cycling pile.  The only running specific items you need are a good pair of  shoes and some running shorts.  Please don’t wear your cycling shorts when running.  That would not be a pretty sight or a fun experience for anyone.  But your tights, gloves, base layers, socks, jackets, and even loose fitting non-elastic jerseys can be used for running.

Choosing clothes for a cold weather run is also much simpler than the clothes for cold weather cycling.  Your running speed is fairly consistent.  You don’t have the slow climbs and then the roaring descents to chill you like you do in cycling.  Also, there is no coasting when running so your body is always generating heat.  All you need for a run in temps around freezing are tights, base layer shirt, gloves, hat, and some sort of long-sleeve outer layer (wind shirt, vest, fleece, etc).


2) The body prefers cycling, especially the knees.  Ok, this is a given but I’d just like to confirm it one more time.  However, trail running is easier on the knees and it’s a lot more fun.  It’s just like mountain biking, except slower and without the bike.

As several of my friends have commented before, cross training with cycling and running will help you become stronger in both disciplines.  The muscles and joints that are sore from a long run will thank you for making your next exercise a bike ride.  And the same goes for those sore legs after a long bike ride – they will appreciate a change of pace with a run.


3) Long runs and long rides require you to have the right mental attitude.  You have to accept the fact there will be some patches that just hurt, but hang in there and you’ll get through them.  The mental aspects can doom you more than the physical.


Back In The Saddle Again

It’s now time to get back to a more regular schedule with some bike rides, camping, and paracord projects.  I’ll still be running, but not as much.  At least not until later in the year when I’ll be running my first marathon.

Cyclist decides to run a marathon

Yes, I’m crazy and signed up for a marathon in late September.   I’ll always be a cyclist at heart, but the challenge of a marathon will be fun to try.

About Andy Amick
A little bit nutty in general, a lotta bit nutty about bikes. Each of his boys received a bike helmet for their first birthday and the three of them have been biking together ever since.

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