Dr. George Sheehan once stated, “Out on the roads there is fitness and self-discovery and the persons we were destined to be.” I believe it is through a constant pursuit of physical achievement—by pushing ourselves past the breaking point—we can discover who we truly are and honor what our hearts carry.
I used to hate running. That is not an overstatement. I was your typical Marine Corps Grunt. I smoked like a chimney and drank on the catwalks of the barracks like I was Hemingway in Havana. In the Marine Corps, we were required to run a 3-mile physical fitness test between 18 and 28 minutes. Prior to really falling in love with endurance sports, I would complete this task in around 21-to-22 minutes. Since I was raised by a Marine (my dad), I was still able to do fairly well in the running arena due to the mindset he instilled in me at such a young age: “WIN.”
I did not start my running passion until after my best friend, and roommate, in the Marine Corps was killed in a motorcycle accident. For me, running was a way of picking up the pieces and honoring my mate through a constant push to become mentally and physically sharp. Ready at all times to be able to endure the harshest of environments and tasks. “If you’re not the smartest, be the hardest.”
I’ve done an extensive amount of research into the running world and I have logged hundreds of thousands of miles while running. Through my experience, this blog is designed to share some of my recommendations, through running form and equipment, to allow you to constantly push yourself in the healthiest way when it comes to your mental and physical training!
One of the most important aspects of running is having the proper form. It can make or break you in any endurance sport. Human beings, since the dawn of time, were meant to stalk—being able to run long-distance and attacking when our prey became tired. Have you ever watched a child run for the first time? They run on their forefoot because it allows them to conserve energy by leaning into their stride, as well as sending all that shock from foot striking up their muscles (the calf and the hamstrings) and not across their tibia into their knees. Just remember, lean about 15 degrees forward when you run to achieve this. If you run straight up you could actually begin to heel strike, because you begin to lean back and resist the momentum of running. One of my favorite running shoes that helps me achieve a perfect running form has been developed by a company called Newton. Newton has created a shoe that incorporates lugs on the forefoot, with a minimal heal-to-drop, which can aid in perfecting your running form.
LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. Back in the day, I use to think it was all about how many miles I ran in the week. I constantly had to hit my weekly mileage to the detriment of my body. However, this is the whole balance between, “If you’re not smart, be hard;” please be smart on this. Do not push yourself to the point where you can not train the next day—tomorrow is another fight. With that being said, there are things you can do mentally to prepare yourself to get back into endurance sports. For example, I try to listen to Les Miles once a day. Here is an example of one of his motivational speeches:
Something I do to push past my mental fatigue is I write down the initials of all of Marines I’ve lost to combat and suicide on my shoes. I can look down and see what I’m really honoring here. THEM.
Thank you very much for your interest in this blog. If you have any questions, please email me at Marketing@FieldCraftSurvival.com.