Wondering if track or drills and skills are a good fit for you? We sat down with Coach Sharon to get the scoop on who its for, what to expect, and how each can change your running and fitness.
Intervals Newsletter: What level of experience is required for running track or participating in drills and skills?
Coach Sharon: Track and D&S are for all levels. From those who are trying to build fitness by walking or walk/running, to marathon and ultra-distance champions.
IN: What can I expect from a typical track session?
CS: Short and long Intervals on the track ranging from distances of only 100 meters to 2 miles.
IN: What can I expect from a typical drills and skills session?
CS: D&S is an active stretching warmup followed by a warmup of various drills which are types of exaggerated running related movements like high knee lifts, skips, and breathing drills. The main part of the workout is broken into segments focusing on balance and strength exercises designed to improve those muscles and muscle patterns used in running (squats, Bosu ball leg lifts, lunges). The workout often finishes with core strengthening, key to improving running strength and preventing injuries, followed by light stretching and yoga type movements to cool down.
IN: How does track help me become a better runner?
CS: It’s a great opportunity to push yourself with others of similar speeds and fitness and work on your running economy with coaches to guide you safely through the workouts.
IN: How does drills and skills help me become a better runner?
CS: Drills and Skills allows you to focus on key running patterns and recognize areas of strength and weakness regarding individual strength, flexibility, and balance.
IN: Do these sessions help in any other areas of fitness?
CS: Track running improves both aerobic and muscular fitness which transfers to all physical activities as well as better overall health. For drills and skills, the same movement patterns apply to most activities.
IN: What are the benefits of track and drills training?
CS: Track and drills allow you to work out with a specific training goal (such as increase your VO2 max, your LT – lactate threshold, your leg turnover speed, your running form, your endurance, etc.) as opposed to running without a specific training goal. D&S helps the runner identify all movement asymmetries which may be preventing them from efficient and economical running. As a result, the runner will be less likely to incur injuries and run much more efficiently.
IN: What makes it better than training on my own?
CS: For most athletes its much easier to run at a higher intensity with other runners. Running form and economy are very important, better economy allows runners to run faster with the same effort which is a benefit of group track workouts with coaches.
IN: What if I can only make it once each week but can’t always make it to the same session (sometimes track, sometimes drills)?
CS: You can mix and match as you would like.
IN: Who are our coaches and how are they qualified to expertly coach us?
CS: The coaches are world class athletes with years of coaching as well as years of their own racing experiences. See MVSruns.com/coaching for details.
Coach Sharon also shared that as with anything, running well and improving involves discipline and consistency. She said, we must enjoy what we are doing and stay motivated to train consistently, adding that staying healthy and injury-free are the key to that consistency.
“Keeping running enjoyable, motivating, and injury-free is the goal of our coaching team. We want all our runners to enjoy their running experiences and obtain their own person goals, no matter how easy or difficult.”
Sharon added, “The goal is to provide MVS runners with the running tools to improve their running and ultimately perform better as both athletes and individuals.”
Sign up for Winter Track here.