**This post is the first of several in an excerpt series from the book, Be a Better Runner by Sally Edwards & Carl Foster**
I’ve written twenty-two books, all on heart rate, running, and triathlons, but have been pestering Carl to coauthor a broad-based running and fitness book with me for at least ten years. I didn’t find that any of the running books out there—even my own—really put all the up-to-date knowledge together: the new research about gait, the cutting-edge training regimens, or the quantifiable analyses Carl had been immersed in. And I didn’t want this book to be limited to high-end superathletes, but rather to be geared to beginners on up, those who are working up to their first 10Ks, as well as long-time veterans looking for a personal record (PR) in their age groups.
For a decade, Carl had been too busy to think about a book. But getting a dose of Lieberman’s research that day in Seattle about how we humans were literally born to run seemed to turn him—and the running public—on. Career runners who, for decades, just went out and ran, giving no thought to scientific methods and techniques, were now actively seeking new information for the first time. And the general public was too: Stoked by the new findings and frightened by the growing awareness of dangers of sedentary lifestyles and the obesity crisis, everyone is hungering for new information like never before.
“We need to write this book now,” Carl said. “It isn’t just Lieberman. There’s an explosion of new knowledge out there about fitness and training, and you and I are actually a big part of it. Between the two of us, we have eighty years of running and science experience. We’ve got cutting-edge knowledge we can bring to the table that people need to know—about heart rate training zones, body-type predisposition strategies, proper form, performance, and diet—that can help people tap into the joy of running. And now, they finally want it. Yes, I agree with you—we’re obligated to do it.”
Hence, nine months later, like the birth of a baby, we introduce you to this book, which presents the cutting edge of the sport, for beginners and veterans alike, right at your fingertips.
Sally Edwards is a former master’s world record holder in the Ironman Triathlon, a 1984 Olympic marathoner trials finisher as well as a world record holder in the Iditashoe 100-Mile Snowshoe Race. She has competed in some of the hardest races on the planet, including the Western States 100-Mile Run which she won. A leader in the field of fitness training, Sally holds a master’s in exercise physiology and is the founder and CEO of the Heart Zones, Inc. She created the Heart Zones Training System, which uses heart rate data and cardiac training ranges to enhance athletic performance. A founder of the sport of triathlon (and a Triathlon Hall of Fame inductee), most of Sally’s recent races have been performed in her role as the national spokeswoman for the Danskin Triathlon Series.
Carl Foster ph.D., F.A.C.S.M, is the former president of the American College of Sports Medicine. He is a professor of exercise and sport science at the University of Wisconsin– La Crosse and director of the Human Performance Laboratory at UW–L. Carl is a former associate editor-in-chief of Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, and a co-editor of American College of Sports Medicine’s Health/Fitness Facility Standards and Guidelines. His distinguished professional career and accomplishments have produced over 250 scientific papers, book chapters, and longer works.
Some of the highlights include:
- Heart Zones Training: Sally has updated her acclaimed, easy-to-follow, instantly effective Heart Zones Training methodology for more speed and safety. Heart Zones takes the guesswork out of training, works for all levels of runners, and provides you with opportunities to objectively measure how much work you are actually doing.
- The Black Hole: Carl teaches you how to identify this to-be-avoided training zone that has been implicated by new research conducted by his colleague from Norway, Stephen Seiler, Ph.D. An impediment to running progress and recovery, the Black Hole is one of the most valuable new concepts in running training.
- Personalized training: You will learn how to focus your training and goal setting on your specific body type and ability, including three field tests you can do.
- Fast form: Is there a universal running technique, a one-size-fits-all for foot strike, arm swing, and body rotation, as many now claim? Learn how to individualize it for you.
- Real R&R: Rest can supercharge you, but only if it’s the right rest at the right time. Here’s how to tell the difference between deep sleep and dumb sleep, and real rest and restlessness.
- Mix it up: You’ll learn why cross-training activities such as cycling, swimming, rowing, elliptical training, and hiking are not just a fun break from running, but are absolutely critical to running better.
- Why weights: Running alone is not enough. We tell you why a strong, flexible core and breath control are the overlooked keys to strong running—and show you the workouts to get them.
- Gas in the tank: The right food at the right time will dictate your ability to go long and strong, manage your weight, and recover quickly from hard workouts.
- Race-day primer: Learn how to score your best time by tapping the science of race physiology, digestion, and calorie usage.
- Barefoot running: Adherents of this small but growing back-to-nature trend claim injury reduction and running longevity, but there are a lot of unknowns. Is it right for you all the time, occasionally, or never?
More to come ..
Keep your eyes peeled as we continue to release excerpts throughout upcoming weeks. If you fall in love with these tips from our excerpt series, make sure to stop in and grab a copy of Be a Better Runner from our online store, and keep it on your shelf at home to reference and share with others!