Sunday, December 14, 2014

Offseason Training & Milo of Croton

If you’ve been keeping up with Run Jen Run, you know I’m on a temporary mental and physical break from running.  During this “offseason,” my focus has been on spinning, dog walking, and dog lifting.

Wait.  Dog lifting?

My awesome Strength & Conditioning Coach Eric introduced me to Milo of Croton.  After a little Google search, I have become intrigued by his training methods.

Milo was a Greek wrestler in the 6th century BC.  His superhuman strength and athleticism came from one simple routine: lift a bull everyday.  There are many versions of this tale out there in cyberspace but many believe that to become the greatest wrestler in Greek history, he lifted a calf every single day.  He carried the calf all around Croton.  As the calf grew, Milo’s became stronger.  He continued to carry the calf until it was a full-grown bull.

I am a runner and trainer but as much as I know about exercise science and running, I tend to ignore strength training.  Why?  I don’t enjoy it.  This is something I can relate to.  Skip strength training, get injured, and I will deal with it.  Skip “dog lifting” and someday I will not be able to help Georgie get into the car or I won’t be able to carry her 30 lb food bag, etc.  Sometimes you need a little extra motivation to get things done.

The tale of Milo can translate into a metaphor for running and life.  Milo didn’t wake up one morning and try to carry a bull.  Work hard towards your goals everyday.  Start slow.  Make small gains.  Be patient.  You will get there.

If it worked for Milo of Croton, maybe it’ll work for me.  Right?

On another note, I have a lot of days off coming up after Christmas and I look forward to getting back to running.  If you would like to join me for a few miles, friends are always welcome!

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