Finally, the days are getting warmer and longer, which means one thing: prime running season is about to hit stride. And in Charleston that, of course, means the Cooper River Bridge Run.
“Last year was my first time doing the Bridge Run, and I’m looking forward to doing it again,” says Lorraine Lutton, President and Chief Executive Officer of Roper St. Francis Healthcare.
Lutton is no novice — she’s been lacing up her running shoes since college, where she was a competitive fencer at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Last November, she completed a half marathon in Richmond, Va., and she and her family have participated in several Ragnar Relays (long- distance, point-to-point runs completed by a team, with individuals running shorter segments). “Our most recent one was 200 miles from Los Angeles to San Diego last summer,” she says. “It was a blast.”
It was also a vacation. Lutton’s day-to-day reality is more like a marathon of meetings – often beginning at 7 a.m. and not ending until after 7 or 8 p.m. Like many busy professionals and working parents, she squeezes in exercise when she can. “I run around 5 a.m., when there’s no traffic,” says the early bird.
“Ideally, I’d like to run three or four miles at a time, several times a week,” she says, but lately, it’s more like half that. So, again, like many of us, she’s not quite in her top form for the Bridge Run, but she’s excited about tackling it nonetheless. “It helps me to set a goal,” Lutton adds.
So to help “train Lorraine” and offer tips for those of us who share her goal of running the Bridge (or any number of the fun runs in the spring through late fall), Roper St. Francis Healthcare Sports Medicine trainer Eby Krawczyk offers some tips.
“The main thing is to always warm up, start slow, build gradually and stretch, so you can have fun and avoid injury,” Krawcyzk says.
Her “Train with Lorraine” suggestions:
- Set goals that are small and achievable (i.e. aim to run the bridge in under 70 or 80 minutes)
- Find a doable tempo pace. If you’re new to running, time a mile run, then add about one minute and 30 seconds to it for your tempo pace. Change it and ease up if you need to. Listen to your body!
- For injury prevention, warm up for 5 to 15 minutes before running. “I like mixing in lateral lunges, some skipping or high knee exercises, a quad pull stretch and hugging your knee to your chest,” says Krawcyzk.
- Relax and have fun!
If the Bridge Run or a similar 10K is your goal, Krawcyzk suggests this training plan:
2 X a week, run 2-5 miles at tempo
2 X a week, speed training (intervals 1:1 or 2:1 ratio, fartlek training)
1 X a week, add in a long run (3+ miles)
2 X a week, enjoy a recovery day (yoga/meditation, stretching, foam rolling, warm bath)
Stay tuned for Train with Lorraine Part 2 when we’ll check in with our CEO and see how she’s feeling, and focus on stretching.