Manoa Valley training run with Coach Lindgren

by David Carlsson. Oct./06/2011

Today Diana and I met Coach Lindgren at the Cooke Field track on the University of Hawaii campus for a training run. We showed up exactly on time, and Gerry said that he had already done a half mile warm up on the track. That’s the way he is. You better show up on time, or early. Otherwise, he will be gone. He doesn’t like waiting around. He was dressed in his usual running shorts and tank top. But, today he was also wearing a Rock Star truckers hat. It cracked me up! But, you know – he looked great in it. I’ll have to get some more truckers hats made up for him.

We ran around the outside perimeter of the track and then made our way on a dirt road across lower campus. Up a series of steps, and through the main campus. Diana was trying to take photos of us running with her iPhone, but she never ran far enough ahead. I always heard her camera click every time after we had just run by her. Gerry kept telling her she had to run fast, further up ahead, and wait for us. But, she never did that. I think he must have been getting frustrated. I would have been. But, he never shows it. He’s always so patient with runners. Never criticizing. Always finding a positive way to say things. We made our way past the East-West Center and out the upper gate. Leaving campus, we ran some short hilly Manoa roads, before doing a loop around the Elementary School. All the while, Gerry was giving us some training tips, and telling stories.

The main thing Diana said that she took away from this run, was to put in a hard effort during the middle portion of your training session. This will force you to have to work really hard to finish your run at the same pace, and you will become much stronger because of it. Gerry said it was important to make it really hard, basically a sprint. Not, just a little difference. Then the key to maintaining the same pace at the end, was to relax your upper body. Instead of trying to force you body to run fast, just keep your legs going at the same turnover and let them do all the work. The alternative to pushing the pace in the middle of the run, was to go hard from the starting gun. Gerry said Frank Shorter and Pre used to hate him, because they knew that he was going to run as fast as he could for the first mile. He said that the timer at the first mile was his best friend. Because when they called out 4:01, or 4:03, he could hear the brakes go on all around him. No one wanted to run that fast because they thought that if they did, then they would die at the end. But, if you practiced it, you would be able to handle it in a race. Oh, you would still suffer. But, you would force everyone else in that race to make a choice. Either go out with you and suffer, or let you go. And, because you already knew what it felt like to suffer, you would be ok. The other runners, on the other hand would probably not be able to take it. Because they had not trained like you. But, if by chance they did, they might even go on the win the race. But, that would be ok. Because you just made them run the race of their life to beat you. Yeah. Wow!

So, these stories went on for the entire hour.  And, I could feel the inspiration that was taking place. And, see the excitement in Diana’s eyes as he told stories and she asked questions. Then, suddenly we were back at the track, and our run was done. And, now I seem to be at the end of my blog. So, I could tell you more about his high knee training and the Kenyans, or about his training runs at Washington State with Henry Rono. But, I think I’ll save those stories for another day. I’m lucky enough to be going running with Coach Lingren again tomorrow. He wants to get back in shape. He has been sidelined with an achilles heel injury for a little while.  So, he said it feels good to be running again. Tomorrow I’ll ask him if we can set up another lunchtime run with him for some time next week. I’ll let you know what day he will be available. Right now I can tell you the time. It will be 10:10am. So, check back on our blog to see which day we are running again with Coach Lindgren.

David finishing a training run with Coach Lindgren.



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