This week on the podcast I’m excited to share a wide-ranging conversation I had this past Saturday with the legendary Bill Rodgers at Tracksmith’s Trackhouse in Boston. Bill is a hero of mine and I’ve long wanted to have him on the show and Boston Marathon weekend turned out to be the perfect opportunity for it. In this conversation, we talk all things Boston, of course, but also get Bill’s thoughts on his career, talent, training, how his own relationship with running has evolved over the course of his lifetime, and a lot more.
This week on the podcast I’m answering listener questions in the third Ask Mario Anything episode of 2021. (You can check out the first two here and here.) On the other side of the mic for this one—once again—is sponsorship director, Chris Douglas. We talked about my training for this year's Boston Marathon, how to know whether or not you’ve got too much left in the tank at the end of a race, training while on vacation, warming up for workouts, diversity and inclusivity in my work, and a lot more.
Peter Bromka, a 2:19 marathoner who also writes about running, joins me on the show this week to talk all things 2021 Boston Marathon. We spent the entirety of this episode talking about Boston, how we’re feeling in the final couple weeks of training leading up to the race, what we’re most looking forward to—and anxious about—at this year’s event, the return of major marathons in general, Boston being held in the fall for the first time, and a lot more.
Sanjay Rawal is a New York City-based runner and filmmaker. At the time of this conversation in 2018 he had just released a film called 3100: Run and Become, which takes an intimate look at one of the most unique foot races on the planet, The Sri Chinmoy 3100-Mile Self-Transcendence Race. In this episode, we talked about the 3100 film, of course, but also about the idea of running as a spiritual practice throughout history, the connection between competition and spirituality, running as a cultural connector, and a lot more. Whether you’re a competitive athlete or recreational runner, a miler or an ultramarathoner, this conversation will change the way you look at running and the role it plays in your life.
Jon Green is the 26-year-old coach of Olympic marathon bronze medalist Molly Seidel. He is also the head coach of Atalanta NYC, a New York City-based nonprofit that employs and supports professional female runners that are training to achieve their goals while also serving as core mentors for its youth mentoring program. As an athlete, Jon was an All-American at Georgetown University and ran professionally for a brief period of time before turning his attention to coaching. In this conversation, we go deep into Jon’s background as an athlete, we talk about our shared Central Massachusetts roots, and then turn our attention to coaching, where we discuss working with Molly Seidel, of course, but also who has influenced his philosophy, how he views his role as a coach, where he has the most room to grow, and a lot more.
Sabrina Little is an amazing human being. She’s a wife a new mom, she’s a full-time professor of Philosophy and the Humanities at Morehead State University in Kentucky, she writes my favorite column for iRunFar called The Examined Run, and she’s also a heck of an ultrrunner in her own right.
The 1-2-3-2-1-2-3-2-1 fartlek is an "introduction to power endurance" workout that can be used early in a training cycle when an athlete is still building fitness but ready to handle more work. The pickups are relatively short—1-3 minutes in duration—and the intensity—10K effort—should manageable for that chunk of time. The "recovery" intervals, which are run at more of a moderate training pace than a slow jog, are equal in duration to the work interval that preceded it. I like to use a version of this workout every few weeks during a half-marathon or marathon buildup because it forces the athlete to stay engaged the entire time and serves as a nice substitute for a standard threshold session.
can go for a half-marathon. These workouts require a lot of focus while improving the physiological and psychological endurance you'll need to race well at longer distances. One of my favorite threshold workouts is a bunch of 1-kilometer repeats with a short rest (30-60 seconds) in between intervals. We start at half-marathon pace—better to start on the side of too slow than too fast—and get a little faster as the workout goes on without going too crazy.
My favorite workouts are pretty universal in nature, meaning you can go to them whether you're focusing on something as short as a 5K or as long as a marathon. The 3-2-1 Mile Cutdown session fits that bill.