Year in Review: The Best of Coach Roche, Top Training Tips from 2017

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David Roche’s training articles have become a weekly staple at Trail Runner. David, who has won races like the Way Too Cool 50K, Power of Four 25K and the Quad Dipsea, among others, tempers core training advice with gentle reminders not to take our sport (or ourselves) too seriously.

The data speaks for itself: his articles are among the most popular on the Trail Runner website.  Here are the six most-read articles David has written this year.

Understanding Glycogen, Your Body’s High-Performance Fuel

“I know that when I order at restaurants, I am implicitly saying, ‘I’ll have the large glycogen pizza, please, with a side of glycogen breadsticks.’ But what is glycogen, and how can you use it to avoid the dreaded bonk?” Read more … 

Train for Mountain Running, Even If You Live at Sea Level

training for mountain running from sea level

“The elevation of Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania is 531 feet above sea level. The elevation of Manitou Springs, Colorado—home of the Pikes Peak Marathon—is 6,320 feet. The high point of the famed race is 14,000 feet. Going from Bloomsburg to Pikes Peak is insanity.” Read more …

When (and Why) To Train Below Aerobic Threshold

post race recovery

“Think of training like a big salad, with time below aerobic threshold being the greens, time closer to lactate threshold being the dressing and time above lactate threshold and VO2 maxbeing the bacon. A salad with just greens isn’t going to get a five-star yelp review; likewise, a cup of dressing and bacon might taste okay, but it’s not a well-balanced meal.” Read more … 

When (and How) to Power Hike

run faster by power hiking

“The day before the U.S. Mountain Running Championships in 2014, I was a naïve baby deer about to run full speed onto a six-lane highway. I thought trail running was about … well … running, and had plans to run up most of the course’s biggest climbs.” Read more … 

Faster Over 50

training for older trail runners
Photo by Peter Maximow.

“Just as pediatricians are told not to think of children as small adults, runners over 50 should not simply think of themselves as young runners with a few more gray hairs; but with a smart training strategy, they can still chase performance gains.” Read more …

Training and the Art of Stress Management

“The body doesn’t know miles. It knows stress. Adjust your training based on stress and don’t mimic the training of someone living a different life.” Read more … 

How to Train for a 100-Mile Race

How to train for a 100-mile race
Photo by Diana Fulmer.

“To people uninitiated in the ultrarunning world, 100-mile runs lie somewhere between incredible and unfathomable. But, when normal people start making the transition to longer days on trails, 100 miles starts to seem less crazy. Eventually, it might even begin to seem normal.” Read more … 

Use Threshold Training to Run Faster, Longer

“Mention threshold training in a group of coaches, and an Anchorman-like rumble will erupt in a minute or two. If you search threshold-training philosophy online, keywords like “tempo” and “steady state” seem to mean slightly different things to everyone. But there’s no need for things to escalate quickly into a brawl over slight disagreements on terminology, since the basic principles are universal.” Read more … 

Want to Know What It Takes to Finish at Western States? Just Ask Hellah Sidibe.

Find out what happened when this six-year run streaker and HOKA Global Athlete Ambassador took on an iconic ultramarathon in California's Sierra Nevada