Uncover your inner athlete!

Every morning in Africa a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will be eaten.. Each morning in Africa a lion awakes - it knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle or it will starve.

No matter if you are the lion or the gazelle, when the sun comes up you had better be running!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Fighting back against obesity

Today I was reading that there are currently some 14 million Australians who are now being classed as being overweight or obese. This is an incredibly scary statistic to comprehend in a country of only about 22 million people this means that over half the population of Australia are overweight or obese.

We like most of the western world are eating ourselves literally to death.

All is not lost though - I know this because I fought my way back from sure obesity to lose 40kgs and get back my life. Making smarter nutrition choices and eating smaller portions is the key. Our bodies were not made to process copious amounts of processed and sugar laden junk foods. Remember it is very tough to overeat in terms of vegetables. The body simply will stop when it has had enough.

Get an hour of exercise each day - do something, anything - but move! Encourage the youth to and your kids to exercise and play sport. These are all simple things we can control, despite the fact that governments in their infinite wisdom are cutting finance to school sports programs while we face this epidemic.

Running together (while fighting back against obesity), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Spin to win

We have all often heard about the benefits of cross training to improve our running, keep us strong and to ensure one is keeping fit while not over training  Doing something else obviously also keeps one mentally sane and looking forward to again venturing out on the run. The growth in biathlon and triathlon and multisport combination events is testament to the fact that we as humans crave that variety in exercise in life.

Although I am a runner at heart, it makes no difference to me if you run, bike or power walk - merely that you are doing something to ward off obesity.

Spinning on a stationary bike for hours on end has not really held much of an attraction to me until very recently when a friend ran a very successful fast 14KM race off of only spinning training. How was he able to do this?

My belief is that the spinning was keeping him fit and that the race was not long enough to have warranted any longer conditioning runs. Other runners (far quicker than me) have also commented that a once a week spin hard spin session has significantly improved their leg turnover and many of them now build in a session on a spin bike post a long run much in the manner of triathlon brick session.

I started to do the same recently and although my longer runs in the week are only at about 22-24K at the moment, I am moving significantly quicker than I have in the past. The only change being that of the spin sessions.

I would love to hear from others their experiences with increased turnover.

Running together (while increasing leg turnover on the bike), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Age shall not wither them - 81 year old runners

Into my final couple of days in the old hood, I made my way up to the track which I love so much. Many miles have been run around that oval in the past couple of years and many new friends have been made through meeting other runners and boot campers.

This morning there appeared to be an older chap doing some laps and curious to find out just how old he might be, I ran with him as he moved along. Turns out that he is 81 years old. I almost fell over when he told me.

He wouldn’t have won any contests, but then again who cares - he is 81 years old and living proof that running at an old age (or any age for that matter) is by no means bad for you. To top things off he was running in a pair of shoes that looked like they had come straight out of the 1970s. Proof that it is really all marketing spin with regards to changing shoes every couple of hundred KMs.

What will we be doing at age 81? I sincerely hope that as many people as possible will be running and running well.

Running together (while observing some amazing older athletes), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Simple things on the run

This morning out on my normal 8K run I encountered a young boy out running with his father. Now the young bloke could not have been more than five and admittedly many five year olds in the west today would struggle to run long distances, but not this young chap. He had the biggest smile on his face and even his dad looked as proud as punch of him. And why wouldn't he be.

Nothing more simple, natural and healthy than a father spending quality time with his son out on the run. The young man was unconcerned about anything else bar having a good time with his father. Not a care in the world - just one foot in front of the other and happy days really.

Running together (while appreciating the simple things in life) - stride for stride on a life changing ride. -- Sean Muller

Monday, October 22, 2012

Caring friends

I haven't blogged in a little while but thought that it is time today.

Life has a funny way of taking turns that one doesn't see coming but that one can't really avoid. I have learned through the years  that for me indeed it is best to just listen to the signs and take it all in my stride and head in the direction of things. 

As many know, this week I am moving to the other side of town. Why? is the standard question. Not too sure why. I guess it is for a number of reasons. One being that I want to hang out wit some friends that I don't see nearly enough of.  Great running squads are another good incentive and of course being much closer to the beaches. 

Times like this really show me who my friends are and they have been coming through for me in spades. Offers of help with packing and moving and also with offers of gear once I get into the new place. Wow! How lucky am I?

The world is indeed a good place. 

Running together (while seeking out new opportunities), stride for stride on a life changing ride! Sean Muller

Thursday, October 18, 2012

New runs and new adventures

Shortly I’ll be packing up and moving suburbs.

Life has indeed been good to me in my current setup but the time has come for me to move on and so yesterday and today I have been getting in my last runs so that I can say goodbye to all my favourite routes before seeking out new favourite routes.

Change is always something that comes about in life, sometimes through force and sometimes voluntarily. For me this change is something that just feels right for me at this point in time. New adventures come when we least expect them and it is really the embrace of the change that determines how one adapts.

New routes - new adventures.

Running together (while discovering new adventures), stride for stride on a life changing ride. -- Sean Muller

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Daring to dream

Yesterday the world witnessed a moment in history that is unlikely to be repeated for some time to come. I refer of course to Austrian Felix Baumgartner’s leap from the edge of space. Now this has nothing to do with running, but everything to do with the power of fitness, self belief and not giving up on your goals in life. This man is supremely fit and dedicated 7 years of his life to being ready for that one day.

For those that are too young to have seen Armstrong’s walk on the moon, a new adventurer arose yesterday. One for a new generation to emulate.

Strange how in eras of uncertainly and turmoil like things were in the 1960s when the old record was set by General Joseph Kittinger there is a thirst for exploration and interest in activities like distance running where the body is pushed to the limit. Personally I think that such exploits are great. The world has not seen something like this in years and perhaps it may create interest in further exploration and a rediscovery of interest in space and conquering goals that are out there. Some merely for the sake of that they are there to conquer.

Running together (while conquering big goals and keeping fit), stride for stride on a life changing ride!-- Sean Muller.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Visitors from around the world

It is so pleasing to me that my humble blog has been attracting visitors from not only around Australia, but also around the world.

It is really rewarding that individuals from so many countries are interested in sharing in the joy and gifts that accompany running and a health and well being lifestyle. To have so many email into me and share their stories of joy and transformation of life on the run leads me always to reflect on my own journey and when it was in its infancy. So much goodness to be attained from this lifestyle and to influence others positively to do the same.

Happy Friday all - even from a rain sodden Sydney.

Running together (while uniting runners around the world), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller

Monday, October 8, 2012

Smiles on the morning run

This morning on my run I encountered something that I view as being unique.

There was a group of ladies out running and each of them had the broadest smiles and there was lots of laughing and banter going on in the bunch. Now they certainly weren’t the fastest group I have ever seen, but they seemed to be having the most amount of fun of any group that I had seen in many a month.

Smiles, laughter and happy times were the order of the day even through the bleak weather. They just seemed to be quite content to be out enjoying the fresh air together and enjoying life as friends.

A truly fantastic thing to see and I could only but wish them well when I caught them on the way back home at a traffic light.

Running together (while enjoying the company of friends in the morning), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Running even when you intend not to

This morning I had not planned to run at all. With the clocks going forward for daylight savings time, I had fully intended to try and get as much sleep as I possibly could and then get in a gym work out instead. But as the saying goes - the best laid plans of mice and men.

The sun was up when I woke and figured it would be a shame not to at least get out and spend some quality time in it, I headed out and thought I would only do a lazy 6K and then my gym workout.

The 6 turned into 13K and I felt great as a result of getting it done. Seems as if even when I fully intend not to run, my body somehow still wants to do it. Noakes has written about this being the sub conscious governor being in  control and knowing that it likes the feeling of the endorphins it gets from the run and to me that makes perfect sense really.

Running together (while not even intending to run), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller

Friday, October 5, 2012

Bonk running - coming to a grinding halt...

The bonk run is something that I have been experimenting with for quite some time. Put simply bonking is where the body exhausts the glycogen fuel sources and you literally have to come to a standstill. This can come at varying stages of the run, but for many people it can come at that critical 2- 3 hour mark.

Would there be any benefit to training to extend this mark or to teach the body to cope better when this point arrives? I set out to explore all of these things over the past couple of weeks.

Following a series of runs where I have been pushing the limits by not eating on the morning of the run, during the run or drinking anything, I can conclude that the point of bonking (ie. The point where I grind to a halt through lightheadedness) has been extended further and further.

What I have discovered is that the body is able to start tapping into the fat stores and using those as fuel once the glycogen has gone. This morning I had the added heat to contend with which made things less than pleasant but no doubt aided in conditioning the body (I believe in the same way that the sauna does).

Sure this form of training is not for everyone and some may dispute its safety or validity, but then again that is why I am here - to experiment and report back so that you don’t have to.

Does bonk running have a place? Certainly in my book it will be something that I will continue doing.

Running together (while experimenting with bonk running), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Using cross training recovery

This morning I reacquainted myself with the swim as a means of recovery and cross training. This is something that I had been neglecting for some time now.

Those that know me well know that swimming was indeed my first love and that the running and then distance running followed a way after that. I was never afraid of the water and would seek out and jump into almost any body of the stuff that I could.

Days of competitive swimming have waned, but I still advocate the use of the pool and more so the ocean to those I assist with their training as a means of recovery and recuperation. It is not only the different muscle groups that get utilised, but also the fact that one gets to mix in the training in hot and cold environments to assist in the repairing of the minor muscle tears.

Verdict - swimming thumbs up!

Running together (while using cross training recovery), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Rediscovering old favourites

All of us have a favourite run or one that was a favourite of ours but now that for whatever reason seems to have not been run that often. Mine used to be a 9KM loop that I frequently ran out to a local beach and back. I have not run that loop in ages until for some reason this morning I got up and decided to venture out early and get one of these done.

The morning was perfect - sun rising early on the way down and temps headed for 26c. Rounding the heads made me realise just how lucky I was to be able to enjoy such a run. Just amazing.

Made me realise that even though I have moved on, I should make more of an effort to get out and run this loop again for frequently.

Running together (while rediscovering old favourite runs), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The old pair of runners

Over the weekend I was clearing out some old clothing for charity and came across that one thing that all runners have in their closets. The old pair of shoes that you should have parted with already months previously - the ones well past their use by date, but the ones that you have a particular affection for never the less.

Although I don’t really subscribe to the life of a shoe - I believe that all of this is marketing on behalf of the shoe makers, this particular pair however had not only done many kilometres but also many a game of park soccer and general muck around. Time to trade them in.

As I placed them in the charity bin, I felt a little sad as we had shared many journeys together. But then just as suddenly I began to think about who might possibly be the next recipients of them.

Would they also have a passion for running? Would they be quicker than me?

To me it is fascinating to dwell for a while on this, but in reality wherever they end up, that person will no doubt have a much greater need for them than me.

Running together (while sharing old running shoes), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller