All posts by Mark Iocchelli

Also known as the "Running Blogfather", I'm a 40-something marathoner who has beaten stress fractures and terrible shin splints. Now I'm running double the mileage with no pain - and I'm getting faster. I love to talk about running form and Arthur Lydiard. I also enjoy taking photographs, have a beautiful (and very patient!) wife, and am the proud father of two crazy kids. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments about the site.

Start Running… in the Winter?

After a longer than two year break from running (it’s a loooong story), I’m back – I started running again on January 1st. That’s right – I started running smack-dab in the middle of a very cold, very snowy Canadian winter.

And so it goes that, as I found myself out there trudging along in the snow, I began to question the sanity of choosing to start running in – of all months – January. You may be surprised that there is an upside to the choice. No, really, there is! I can think of five positives:

    1. Big Clothes: Hey, I’m about 40 pounds heavier than I was at the peak of training for my last marathon and, while I was a near-skeleton back then, I am nowhere near to resembling “slim in the waist” now. Winter running means winter clothing, and said winter clothing covers me in all the right places (basically, everywhere). I like that.
winter runner
Winter Runner – via A. Guandalini’s Flickr Page
  1. It’s Dark (for much of the day): Same basic reason as in #1 – people can’t see me. I like that.
  2. Almost No One Else Is Running Outside: Yet another variation of #1 and #2 (you may be noticing a trend). That said, it’s not just that I don’t like the idea of showing how round I’ve become, it’s also about not showing the world how slow I’ve gotten (Mother of Mercy, have I ever gotten slow!) and the fact that there aren’t many people running outside to bear witness to all of that. Me and my ¬†out of shape, slow self have some solitude (you won’t find that in any gym). I like that.
  3. Snow Is Soft: If you’re a new or returning runner – especially if you’re carrying some extra weight – you’re probably not very light on your feet. Take it from me, a cushion of snow on the ground is a good thing – that cushion is going to feel a lot less punishing than running on the bare concrete or pavement you’d be running on if you started running in the summer.
  4. It’s Quiet… and Beautiful: The tranquility one can experience from running on a fresh blanket of snow is hard to explain. Winter running definitely has its charm. You just have to try it to know what I mean.

So, there ya have it – the upside to starting to run in the winter. Can you think of others? Leave me a comment and, please, get out there and enjoy the season with me!

What Are You Doing To Help New Runners?

Photo Credit: Mike Baird's Flickr Photostream
Photo Credit: Mike Baird's Flickr Photostream

There are some moments that really make blogging worth it. I just now had such a moment.

Katie from ‘Must Run’ excitedly reported on how she’s gone from one to fourty minutes of continuous running in just the last three months. How did Katie get to this wonderful point in her running career? …find out why I’m so happy

Best Ever Running Books Collection

running booksIf you search for running books on Amazon, you’ll be confronted with hundreds of results. That’s quite a collection – a collection that can be a little daunting (and time consuming) to browse through.
…check out our list of books for runners

Links for May 29th

Flotrack Interviews Nobuya ‘Nobby’ Hashizume

Flotrack‘s Christopher Kelsall recently interviewed Nobuya “Nobby” Hashizume, a coach of the Lydiard method and one of the co-founders of the Arthur Lydiard Foundation. In the interview, they discuss the popularity and success of the Lydiard method, coaching in Japan and the United States, tricks to running fast, and why it’s important to do everything from the bottom of your heart.

Check out the interview here. Continue reading Flotrack Interviews Nobuya ‘Nobby’ Hashizume