Tuesday, March 20, 2012

A riddle

Meet Bob.  Bob is your average, everyday ultra runner.  (all oxymorons aside, please)  His weekly schedule is pretty steady:  he runs about 5 days a week.  A creature of habit, he runs the same 30-mile loop every weekend for his long run.

Bob's weekly mileage for the past two months:  70, 70, 70, 70, 70, 70, 70, 70.

Meet Bob's brother, Billy.  He runs with Bob every single weekday. He does the same long loop with his brother when he can, which is every other Sunday.  (Billy works one day every weekend, but that day alternates every week)   On the weeks where he works on Sunday, he simply does the long loop on Saturday instead.

Billy's weekly mileage for the past two months:  40, 100, 40, 100, 40, 100, 40, 100.

How is this possible?

And furthermore, what lesson can be learned here?


  1. I think this explains it. This is Bob...


  2. How is this possible?: Billy tabulates his weekly mileage every Saturday night.
    Lesson?: Billy should have taken the job at Chick-fil-A. Then his weekly mileage would look just like Bob...

  3. What would I do without you guys? :P

    Weekly mileage is simply a number. When one tries to apply rules such as the 10% rule, it becomes kinda silly, doesn't it? I noticed a case of this last week...I had just booked 81 mile week and was in the middle of another big week. Tabulating my last 7 days of running, I was up in the 90's due to a heavy back half of week 1 combined with a heavy front half of week 2.

    It brings up a question to which I don't think there is a clear-cut answer - how much work should one put in on any given day/week/month/year?

  4. I like to make 6-8 week calendar "blocks" that outline my previous workouts and what I have planned coming up. That way instead of only looking at the week you're currently in, you get an easily visualization of what you've been doing for the past couple weeks, where you are trying to go, and how it all fits together. Training is as much art as science - getting the puzzle pieces to come together is the goal. Being a slave to the numbers / workouts can get you into trouble. I think you just gotta listen to the body (easier said than done, though - it took me 10 years to really figure that out).

  5. It depends on the end goal I'd say but past that I don't know. Some people have god given talents and they can get by with that and they don't have to put in as much effort/work/training. Some people (I consider myself in THIS group) have only marginal to average talent and must work A LOT more to get even close to the same results. Then there are the truly blessed, those who are talented AND hard working who go around kicking everyone's butts! :)