> I am a teacher at the High School of Graphic Communication Arts in
> Manhattan (Hell's Kitchen). I became the cross country coach yesterday.
> My experience running was as a slow amateur who stopped running 34-40
> minute 5 mile runs 10 years ago when I got heel spurs. I now ride my bike
> every day including to school.
> I need to set up a schedule, read some good books on stretching for
> running fast. Thanks for any suggestions.
I have run on a junior high/high school cross-country course for 5 years
now, and have been through 4 coaches. The best thing to do is to start all
new runners off slow, maybe do a 2-3 mile loop in central park (during the
day of course!), for older kids or for those who are in shape, have them
run up to 5 miles for around a week, alternating hard days with easy
days. After a week, move the short-distance runners up a notch to the 4-5
mile range, and send the better runners out on runs up to 8 miles every
third day or so. Mix in some speed workouts, such as 5x800s (preferably
on a track) under a certain time. The better runner could probably do all
5 under 2:20, while some of the slower ones might need up to 3 minutes.
The important thing is to alternate. Running long distance runs on
successive days is good for no one, and it just tires out high school
runners. Give runners some rest days of simply running 2-3 mile runs
every 4 days or whenever it seems necessary.
My girlfriend goes to Fordham, and I'm in Hell's kitchen a lot. Maybe
I'll see your team one day. Are they still trying to build a helipad
somewhere near you, or were the flyers I saw everywhere just a joke?