How They Train!

Jim Halley - March 2018


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Did you compete in high school cross country or track?

  • Definitely not

How many years have you been running?

  • I have been running from my demons my whole life but running for fitness for just 11 years.

Lifetime personal records

I once ate an entire box of 10 mixed-variety flavored oatmeal packets (heated with milk, of course) in less than 30 minutes. Oh, running?

  • 5K: 16:55
  • 8K: 29:38
  • 10K: 36:35
  • 15K: 56:46
  • Half marathon: 1:20:44
  • Marathon: Mara-what-ey? Yeah, ain’t nobody got time for dat. Every marathon I have ever run has ended with me walking the last part in 50-degree rain.

What running events do you train for or what are your training goals?

  •  I prefer mid-distance stuff, 10K to half marathon. I have a short attention span so anything longer and I get bored, my mind starts to wander, I stop paying attention and start tripping over things and falling… it gets ugly quickly!

Consider your training over the past 6 months to one year.  How many miles a week do you typically run when not injured and consistently running?

  • 35-45 miles per week is what I shoot for.

What does your typical week of running look like?

  • Monday:  If I’m doing Tuesday FSU track, then this is just a short easy run. If I’m doing Wednesday track at Leon, then I’ll try to get in 5 or 6 at a pretty decent pace. 
  • Tuesday: Either FSU intervals or an easy short run and a bike ride
  • Wednesday:   Either Leon intervals or an easy short run and a bike ride.
  • Thursday:   Mid-distance bike at a pretty good pace plus a 2 +/- mile brick run
  • Friday:   If there’s a Saturday race, something short and easy. If no Saturday race, probably a 6-8 mile tempo run.
  • Saturday:  Either a race or something short and easy. 
  • Sunday:  Sunday is long run day, yo! We all know that! 10-20 miles depending on what I’m training for, how much I feel like hazing myself, and how many miles I need to run to make sure my weekly mileage is higher than Kristin’s!

How does your training vary over the course of a year?

  • It doesn’t. I don’t really follow a plan ever so I just let work, travel, and everything else dictate volume and intensity for me.

Do you take recovery or down time?

  • Absolutely not. I’m really bad about that but hey, I just wanna run! 

Do you peak for certain races?

  • Never. I have seen too many people train 16, 20, 24 weeks to peak for an A race then have something out of their control go wrong – bad weather, the wrong oatmeal at the hotel, locusts, wrong turns, ISIS… I’m not going pro, I am ready to race any day. If I have one go bad, oh well, there’s always another race next weekend where I can make up for it.

How much sleep do you usually get at night?

  • Not enough. 6-7 hours.

What time of day do you normally run?

  • Evenings during the week and mornings on the weekend

What injuries have hampered your training over the past year? 

  • Injuries? What are those? Never heard of them. If anyone knows my history, they know that a pulled hammy isn’t going to stop me! Whenever something hurts, I run through it until I either beat it into submission and it goes away, I just go numb to the pain and it becomes moot, or I eventually need surgery. Probably a pretty dumb approach but hey, I can be dumb (ask Kristin!).

Do you take any dietary or medical supplements?

  • . A steady diet of blackened mahi and house cab, that’s about it!

What type of running shoes do you prefer?

  • For training, stability shoes. New Balance 1260s are my favorite. For racing, I prefer something lighter, Asics Piranhas or New Balance 5000s.

Do you race in a different type of running shoe?

  • Oh, I guess I jumped the gun on that one. To quote the beautiful Jim Halley, “For racing, I prefer something lighter, Asics Piranhas or New Balance 5000s.” Damn, I suck at this… Asics Piranhas or New Balance 5000s. Ask me one more time, I dare you!

Do you use weight training?

  • Sporadically. I go through bouts where I’m really consistent then I will donate money to Planet Fitness for 2 straight months without ever seeing the inside.  I focus on smaller muscle groups: groin, ankles, and throat usually. Heavy weight, lots of volume.  In reality, I choose a random workout from Muscle and Fitness Hers or Oxygen and do that. Back in the day I was gym rat so I have to workout with light weights, otherwise I get all swole and can’t run fast.

Do you stretch? 

  • Nope, I am pretty sure I would snap, though!

What are your favorite running routes?

  • Cadillac Trail is definitely my favorite. Also, any Strava segment out of town when I’m traveling for work.

What running resources do you like that would benefit someone else?

  • Really just all of the training groups we have here. I don’t really go to books or website for running resources but the groups we have are great.

How has your training changed over the years?

  • Hasn’t really changed at all. I do the same types of workouts on the same days now that I did back in the day. I’m a creature of habit, I like routines.

What examples can you give of specific training methods, and what were the results?

  • Track workouts and tempo runs are the two workouts I love (and hate) most – I think I personally get the best results from them. I can tell when I am consistently doing track and tempo workouts that I am definitely faster. I haven’t been doing either lately but I’m starting back up – you better watch out, Sherron! I’m coming back!

What advice do you have for beginning or experienced runners to help them with their training?

  • For anyone local, just get out there and get involved with the training groups. Every single one has someone from all abilities so wherever your fitness or ability is, there will be someone like you in any of the groups. Also, sign up for the Summer Trail Series. It’s a great series of 4 trail races in the summer with amazing routes, great prizes and awards, and the race director is incredibly good looking and smart (ß referring to Kristin, not myself, though I have been known to describe myself that way from time to time).