The secret to running in Austin during the summer ….the run sandwich!

I have been an Austinite for over 20 years.  As a runner, that means I have literally survived running in the Texas summer heat.  We are talking about hot!!  How hot?  So hot, that when you get in the car, the steering wheel comes off on your hands.  So hot, that when it is 5pm or later, my favorite time to run, you don’t walk outside and think “Oh man, this weather wants to make me get up my heart rate and sweat!”

Over the years, I have devised a survival strategy I like to call “The Run Sandwich”!

Here is how it works.  Find a cold body of water.  My favorites are Barton Springs Pool and Deep Eddy.  Barton is a few degrees colder so it works better for this method.  Swim in the water for about 5 minutes or more.  This will lower your core temperature.  Get out, dry off, throw on your running shoes and take off.

I have found that the heat does not affect me when I do this for about an hour.  I have run on 100+ degree days and still feel OK.

When you are done running, throw yourself back into the cold water and cool off!

That’s it folks!  Try the run sandwich this summer.  Let me know how it goes or any better ideas you have.


Example of running clinic results

Example of running clinic results

Recently I taught Emily Talley of the Naturally Fit sports news channel how to run correctly.

It was a brief lesson but she caught on quickly and seemed to enjoy .

Take a look at this before and after video.  In a clinic you will receive the same coaching and video analysis to help you perfect your stride and take it to the next level.  Can you see the difference??


Emily Talley learns to run from Spencer of – Before And After video shot from Spencer Conklin on Vimeo.

On the lighter side

On the lighter side

One of my students, Tara,  over the weekend talked about Phoebe’s running style.  I was not aware of this episode of Friends.

You really should study her form in detail.  I think she might be on to something!!  😉

Get it, read it, live it – Born to Run.

This is a truly wonderful book!  I few years ago I borrowed it from my friend, Tom.  I read it in 3 days!  I could not put this book down.  It has an important message about running, life, and the tarahumara, a hidden tribe from the Mexico copper canyons.

This tribe is really born running and uses running as their way of transport.  No cars!  They don’t have a paradym that running is hard or takes training, power bars, etc…. they just run for the joy of it!

You can purchase the book here.

Eat Better, Run Better

Marvin Jansen
Here is some good stuff reprinted with the permission of Marvin Jansen

“There’s no easier moment to kick-start your healthy eating plan in order to look and feel your best on the beach or at the pool than when fruits and vegetables hit their peak. Taking advantage of nature’s sweetest, most succulent offerings reprograms your body to work the way it’s supposed to function. Here’s how to make it happen:
1. Count colors instead of calories. Every category of fruit and vegetable contains hundreds of unique, healthy substances. Try to eat at least five different fruits or vegetables each day, in a range of colors. Your shopping cart should have as many colors as a box of crayons.
2. Eat three main meals, plus snacks, so you’re never hungry. When you push your body into starvation mode, it will begin to store fat. Your metabolism will slow down
3. Have a fiber-rich breakfast. Toss fruit into your cereal. Make sure the cereal contains at least 3 grams of fiber per serving. Switch to whole-grain bread. Smear some all-natural fruit or nut spread on your toast.
4. Bring home fire-extinguishing foods. Every refrigerator needs good-for-you foods that put out starvation fires. Blueberries, peaches, cherry tomatoes, celery, and other ready-to-eat produce options simplify the snacking and encourage eating good-for-you foods.
5. Remember that you are in control of your nutrition. You choose the health and tone of your body by your food intake choices. Take care of the living organism in which you reside. Be good to the body and it will be good to you.”

So simple and true!


Statesman Article – Freetorun!

I just finished 2 very successful mini clinics.  One at the Runtex location downtown and the other at Crossfit in Georgetown.  Here is a great article in the Austin American Statesman about POSE and me.

Hopefully, this article  will  help get more people running correctly and without injury!


Running correctly saves your body and shoes

Barefoot running is really making a splash around the country.  Someone said there was an NPR radio show about it so I just checked and sure enough.  Listen to it here!

The cool thing about learning POSE is that you learn the correct way to run barefoot without going out and hurting yourself!  I only run barefoot on the beach.  However, I do wear a very minimal shoe, the H Street by Puma.  I have owned the same pair for 3 years, put thousands of miles on them, and they still look and ride great! Why?  Because I am very easy on the ground and on my feet and legs.  The shoe has any easy time of it.  No need to replace the shoes every 500 miles like most runners do.