How They Train!Perha Varley - October 2012
How many years have you been running?
- I have been running for 25 years, about 25-30 miles a week.
What are your training goals?
- I ran my first 10 K in Seoul, Korea, in 48 minutes and a 5 K in 23 minutes. I have finished several half marathons with a best time of 2:10. I completed my first Marathon (Tallahassee) in February 2012. Typically, I train to remain as injury free as possible after having had both knees scoped for meniscus repair.
What does your typical week of running look like?
- Monday: 6 miles with hills
- Tuesday: Intervals and hills plus weight training (5-10 lb Upper body) and floor exercises.
- Wednesday: 6 miles with hills
- Thursday: Weight Training (5-10 lb Upper body) and floor exercises.
- Friday: 6 miles with hills
- Saturday: If no race is scheduled for that day, I run long runs of 8-16 miles depending on what distance the races are in the near future.
- Sunday: Intervals (Track)
How does your training vary over the course of a year?
- Preparing for the Tallahassee Marathon, I greatly increased my weekly mileage up to 40 or so miles from September to February.
Do you take recovery or down time?
- No. Not really.
Do you peak for certain races?
- For longer races only, e.g. half/full marathons.
How much sleep do you usually get at night?
- Eight hours
What time of day do you normally run?
- 5:00 AM
What injuries have hampered your training over the past year?
Do you take any dietary or medical supplements?
- Vitamins, Calcium, Glucosamine/Chondroitin daily.
What type of running shoes do you prefer?
- Saucony Hurricane 13 with orthotic inserts from Kim Ortloff.
Do you race in a different type of running shoe?
- I race in Asics shoes.
Do you use weight training?
- Yes, Twice weekly. I use an exercise video with 5, 8, and 10 lb free weights. All weight training is upper body. Following that I do 15 minutes of push-ups, sit-ups, and floor exercises.
Do you run intervals?
- I basically do intervals twice a week. On Tuesday mornings I walk one mile and then run one mile as fast as possible. On Sunday afternoons I go to Leon High School track and run intervals with the group coached by Paul Guyas. This training session lasts about 1 hour and has been most helpful.
Do you stretch?
- No, but I will walk a good bit after every race to cool down.
What are your favorite running routes?
- Killearn area with low traffic and lighted streets.
What running resources do you like that would benefit someone else?
- Runners’ World, Internet articles.
How has your training changed over the years?
- Increased weekly mileage and running longer distances.
What examples can you give of specific training methods, and what were the results?
- Intervals for speed and distance for endurance. I’m still on a runner’s high after finishing my marathon. Long, slow running was the best training.
What advice do you have for beginning or experienced runners to help them with their training?
- Start with a good pair of shoes that have been properly fitted by someone in the know. Listen to your body. Start slow and short and only increase slowly, e.g. 10% per week.