Sunday, June 12, 2011

Honey badger don't care

For those of you who are Facebook friends with me, you may have seen a video I shared about the honey badger.  If not, I've added the link below.  This video has been making the rounds for a while, but somehow, I never saw it before the other day.  Honey badger has made quite an impression on me and has become one of my heroes.  I actually found myself chanting, "Honey badger don't care," during my track workout this week when things started to get tough.  Thinking of that little badass honey badger out there getting bitten by cobras, taking a short "nap" and getting back to the business of eating the cobra makes me feel like a loser if I complain about pain while running.
This week, I had a full week of training and travel for work.  I was at our semi-annual scientist geek fest in Bodega Bay, CA Monday through Thursday, where we spent the entire time sequestered in little cubby holes writing our brains out about the latest conservation science issues we are working on.  It sounds all nice and relaxing, but it is very hard work.  I always leave these events exhausted.  My daily run is truly a highlight while I'm there, giving me a chance to get out into the fresh marine air and spend some time not thinking about writing.  I ran 9-10 miles each day on Tuesday and Wednesday in Bodega along the harbor shore and then up onto Bodega Head where there are some newly constructed trails that circle the head.  My legs got in lots of good hill work those days.

Thursday night, when I got home, I did my track workout.  It was much warmer this week than last for a very similar, but slightly harder workout.  I ran 12.25 miles total with 2 x (1600/1200/1600) with 4 minutes jog rest between reps and 7 minutes jog between the two sets.  The workout called for 8k pace, but I decided to try to hold the same pace as last week's 10k-paced workout which was 5:55-6:00.  My guess is that I would not be able to hold 6:00 pace in even an 8k right now in warm conditions.  In fact, The Good Book (Squires and Lehane) says this about this particular workout: "This workout is aggressive, but don't hammer yourself excessively."  Well, honey badger probably would have hammered excessively, but I decided not to.  Nonetheless, I averaged 5:58 pace for the reps.

Friday, I was tired.  I did my 8 mile run and felt pooped the whole time.  Luckily, the day called for an 8-mile recovery run and I needed it.  I am closely following the Squires plan in terms of pacing for my non-workout runs.  He has three different paces for these runs:

  • recovery pace = heart rate between 120-140 (>8:15 pace for me)
  • easy pace = < 2 minutes per mile slower than 5k pace (7:50-8:00)
  • relaxed pace = ~2 minutes per mile slower than 5k pace (7:30-7:45)      
The slower pace I ran on Friday paid off in that my body felt great during my run last night.  Another small detail that I'm following "by the book" from Squires' plan is doing strides after my run is over.  In the past, I would do my strides during the last few miles of my run but would typically still run a mile after that on my way home.  Now, I finish my run at home and do my strides in front of my house, which tortures my poor puppy who watches me zoom past the window over and over and doesn't understand why he can't come out and chase me.  This also gives me the opportunity to change into less shoe for the strides.

On that note, my next post will elaborate more on why I'm jumping on the bandwagon and going minimalist with my footwear.  I haven't started this yet, but I have a plan.  Of course I have a plan.  In the mean time, if you haven't read The Science of Sport post about this or Camille Herron's account of her switch to minimalist running, you might want to.

Honey badger don't wear shoes.  Honey badger don't give a shit.


  1. Glad that you too are on the minimalist path. Check out Pete Larson's runblogger blog as another great source of related information. FYI I had Pete and Steve Magnus (Alberto's latest assistant coach) and Newton's Ian Adamson on a Runners Round Table podcast last April for a good discussion.

  2. Entertaining video - especially the narration! Hadn't seen it - I haven't been on FB for a while.

    Thanks for the Camille link. I'd seen the SoS one. I'm a big fan of minimal shoes (and barefoot running on grass) - ran my 1500 and 3000 PBs barefoot on a Rekortan track so my feet were tough enough for those distances. Doing most of my running now in very old Frees (the older they get the more barefoot-like they become). Anyway, interested to see how you get on.