The Running Lord’s Prayer 🙏

Good morning,

It’s the weekend, and I hope you’re in the mood for some light entertainment. Us runners are a superstitious bunch. We indulge in monotonous routine, and rely on rituals that border the insane.

And, yes, sometimes we even have to appeal to a higher power. But prayer is not easy. What do we say when we need a little help from the guy upstairs, a little push from the ultimate endurance monster?

Well, worry no longer. I present to you, the Running Lord’s Prayer:

Our Pacer who art in rhythm,
Hallowed be thy stride.
Thy marathon come,
Thy will be done,
On trails as it is on the track.

Give us this day our daily miles,
And forgive us our missed strength training,
As we forgive those who jog beside us.

Lead us not into temptation of Strava kudos,
But help us run for our own fulfillment.

For thine is the endurance, the speed, and the glory,
Now and until the finish line.

As you can see, I even made a little illustration to accompany it. What can I say? It must have been divine inspiration. Let me know if you want a printed version to put on the wall next to your treadmill.

Anyways, let’s move on to this week’s main course.

👣 A Primer on Ground Contact Time in Running

“When we’re running, our feet touch the ground. Groundbreaking, I know, but bear with me. Every time our feet hit the ground, they linger there for a short while. The duration of our foot’s contact with the surface during each step is referred to ground contact time. It is typically expressed in milliseconds.”

Look, I’m not gonna pretend. Yes, this is probably the geekiest article I’ve ever written about running. And that’s saying something. But that’s how I know you’re going to like it. Learn everything you never even knew you wanted to know about ground contact time. Including how to work on improving it.

› Learn about ground contact time in running

😊 Engineering Running Happiness: The Science-Backed Mindset of Performance Happiness and Success

“Thus, this equation is formulated by research evidence based on people’s expectations of certain events, what actually happened, and how the difference between the two ultimately led to the degree of perceived happiness. So, it seems that the key to subjective success — happiness and satisfaction — lies in how well we optimize both expectation and the real outcome.”

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this piece from Joe Uhan on how to make racing something that adds to your happiness. He writes in an entertaining fashion about how you need to shape your mindset to make sure that running becomes a positive factor in your life.

› Read about engineering running happiness

⌚️ Your Smartwatch May Be Impeding Long-Term Running Goals

“Now that runners have such unprecedented access to robust training and bodily data, it can be tempting to pore over every detail to determine what can be optimized to ensure great performances, fewer injuries, and longevity in the sport. But therein lies the risk.”

Slightly clickbaity title aside, I could very much relate to the warnings put forth by Jason Fitzgerald in this article. One of the main reasons I prefer to use an Apple Watch for running, is that it doesn’t push various “performance metrics” on me. I’m just not equipped to handle my watch telling me that my training is unproductive, even if I know it’s total BS. Do you handle it better than me? Either way, I recommend this article to help you become more conscious about your relationship with data.

PS: Yes, I do realise that this might sound rich coming from a guy who just published a 2000+ words article on a niche running dynamic metric. But what can I say, I’m a human being with all the inconsistencies and self-contradictions that entails!

😂 Just for Laughs

Consistency, consmishtensy.

That’s all I have for you this week. If you enjoy the newsletter, please forward it to a friend. Or share the following link:

Until next week!


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August 18, 2023