Thursday, August 15, 2013

Would You Rather, a running style survey

As evidenced in the many months (? years?) I've been doing Friend Making Monday, and the presence of multiple other questionnaires on this blog, you know I love doing them.  Particularly ones about running!  So I found this one that seemed different and I thought it would be fun to post the questions as well as my answers.  Particularly since I'm not really running this week. 

I originally found it on this post by Renee.  And it looks like she posted in response to a post she found here (but I copied it from Renee's blog because I liked her colors). 

Feel free to post your own answers, particularly if I read your blog a lot, I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments or on your blog. 


Do a tempo run or hill repeats?
A tempo run.  I hate hills and I really hate hill repeats.  It's even worse because in Dallas, I've had about five to ten negative encounters with motorists or bicyclists -- unless you count while doing hill repeats, where I've had a negative encounter each of the two times I've done repeats in the last month.  Sometimes the "fueled by anger" can help me power up one more hill, but generally it just makes me even more miserable. 

Hydrate with water OR hydrate with a sports drink?
Water.  But I usually do sports drink about every 6 miles.  Here is my rough pattern for a long run:
mile 2 - water
mile 4 - gu/gel/chomps and water
mile 6 - sports drink
mile 8 - water
mile 10 - gu/gel/chomps and water
mile 12 - sports drink
mile 14 - water
mile 16 - gu/gel/chomps and water
You get the idea.  This has worked well for me for a long time, so I am very concerned about the fact that the Berlin marathon appears to have stops with water every 5k, and sports drink every 10k.  The sports drink is fine, but I'm used to having more water.  On my next few long runs, I need to try mimicking the race course more. 

Itch constantly as you're running or sneeze constantly
as you are running?
I think I'd rather itch.  I think I'd have to come to a complete stop before I could sneeze.  And if I had to pee even a little, ugh! 

Compete in the Olympics as a runner or in another sport?
(What sport?)
I'd love to be an Olympic runner!  Something like the 100 meter, or the marathon, wouldn't matter, just as a runner.  I guess my second choice would be figure skating, but since I don't really know how to skate beyond loops at a rink that I do about once a decade, I pretty much have no shot at that.  Haha.  Wait, I also have no shot at being an Olympic runner unless a vast majority of the fit and fast population dies out! 

Be a short distance sprinter OR be the energizer bunny, holding the same pace for a long period of time?
I'd rather be able to run for a long time. There are all-comers track meets in our city one night per week for six weeks and it's always funny because I do all kinds of events, but I always have to go in the slowest heat -- the announcer will call it "the distance runner heat" or the "women over 30 heat" or whatever.  Bottom line is that I love all running, and it would be awesome to be super-fast at the 200 or something, but I'd much rather be able to sustain a pace for 20 miles. 

Do speed work on a treadmill OR do speed work on a track?
Track 100%.  I have never done speed work on the treadmill, and I pretty much hate the treadmill so I generally avoid it except for about five runs per year where it feels necessary.  Speed work is always hard, but at a track it just feels real.  I do most my track work now at a track on SMU's campus, occasionally at a junior high up by Hillcrest and Walnut Hill (for Dallas people). 

Do core work OR stretch post run? (Now do you really do either?)
I'd rather stretch, but honestly, I usually do both (though core work is never post-run).  I think around the time I was in my mid-30s, I got into the habit of walking for a few minutes immediately after a run over about 5 miles, and then doing a few stretches.  I've also gotten pretty religious about doing a few minutes of stretching after all my weekly long runs.  While I'm hurting right now, I feel like I generally run pretty pain-free, and I credit that to cross-training and post-run stretching.  I go to boot camp twice a week now (was three times a week until a couple months ago), and that usually includes a fair amount of core work. 

Have no toe nails OR black toe nails?
Ugh.  I think right now I'd have to say no toe nails.  I have one that has been black for practically a year, and it's just kind of permanently blistering and swelling underneath.  It sucks.  I have recently lost both my little toe nails and so I just put blue polish on the stub and they don't hurt at all. 

Wear an army pack while running
OR wear lead toed boots while running?
Lol.  I hate this question.  I just kicked major @ss last year in a marathon where I had to wear an army pack (mine weighed in around 43 pounds), and I still have a scar on my lower back from where it rubbed off all my skin.  I was so happy to get rid of that blood-stained back pack that I thought about having a party with my running buddies to burn it.  But I can only imagine how much lead-toed boots would hurt, so I guess I'd reluctantly choose to don the pack again, even though I think that major slow-down on pace took almost a year for me to recover from and get back up to full speed. 

Run twice a day three days a week or
run once a day for seven days a week?
I think twice a day three days per week.  I love having at least one complete rest day per week.  Right now (well, until last week), my schedule was 3 formal group runs per week, 1 informal group run per week, and 5 commuting runs per week.  9 runs per week has been my pattern for months, so I actually don't blame that for my current over-use pain -- I think that is more attributable to higher mileage on the group runs, and some pacing issues. 

Have side cramps your entire run or
have leg cramps your entire run?
Side cramps! I'd think that they were be easier to deal with, because at least I could keep moving forward.  My most recent calf pain started as what felt like a cramp.  I think it would be much easier to move with side cramps.  But actually, even that would probably mean "rest day" for me.

Fun questions!  Thanks for sharing!


  1. haha is it wrong im excited about answering this?!

  2. Thank you for linking this back to me! I have a new one up today and it's a LINK UP if you want to join! :)

  3. Hi Carina,
    Hope you're travelling well and 2013 has been good to you so far.
    I'm just popping in to let you know about a little #reverb-like blog challenge my friend Meredith and I are offering from August 21 to 31. It's called August Moon and it looks all set to be magic!
    We'd be so excited if you joined us. You can find out more here:
    Take care,
    Kat xx

  4. I'm impressed that you stretch consistently. I'll do great for awhile, but then I'm guilty of letting it slide when my runs get longer and I'm in better shape.

    Wow, you did a marathon with an army pack!? What was it for?

    1. It was to commemorate the Bataan Death March from WWII. Many of the remaining survivors attend. Very interesting race!

  5. Love this! I'll have to do these questions on my blog this week! ;)