How they Train: Austin Adkison

Age  25

Did you compete in high school or collegiate cross country or track? No

How many years have you been running? 20 overall, 7 competitively

Lifetime personal records: 5:43 Mile, 18:57 5K (at PRA Intervals), 42:55 10K, 1:33:08 Half Marathon, 3:57Marathon, 9:06 50 Mile 

Running Achievements for which you are Most Proud: 
  • Deer Dodge 50 miler 2015 – First ultramarathon and first overall win!
  • Deer Dodge 50 miler 2016 – Gave up a win and joined the DNF club because my body started to shut down. I listened to my body and did what was best for me in the long run instead of being greedy.
  • Dealing with undereating and not letting it effect my training or performance in the long term. This is probably my proudest achievement as an athlete.
What running events do you train for or what are your training goals? Shorter events in the spring and summer (5ks, 10ks) and longer distances in the Fall (marathons and ultras). I would like to qualify for Boston in the future, and would also like to race Western States 100, Leadville, and Barkley Marathon.

How Many Miles Do you typically run when not injured and consistently running? It depends on what I’m training for. I try to supplement miles with cross-training (cycling, and swimming). When I introduced both of these sports into my weekly activities I noticed a remarkable difference in my running performance. Cycling helps strengthen the legs without the pounding that you do when running, and swimming helps stretch out and loosen up after hard workouts.

What does your typical week of running look like? I’m between training cycles right now, so I’m doing what I want for a few more weeks while still holding a solid base. This is a week from my training last September when I was gearing up for Fall races.
  • Monday: 2 miles easy in morning and core work, PRA speed work at night, foam roll and stretch
  • Tuesday Afternoon swim and strength training (warm up run, lift, cool down run)
  • Wednesday: West Florida Wheelmen group ride
  • ThursdayAfternoon swim, hour to hour and a half of trail running
  • Friday:  Strength training in the morning, easy bike ride at night
  • Saturday: 15 mile long run with rolling and stretching afterwards
  • SundayMere Mortals, swim as I feel in the afternoon
How does your training vary over the course of a year? Warmer months (April to August) are focused on shorter distances and working on speed to take advantage of cooler months to come. Cooler months (September to March) are focused on longer distances.

Do you take recovery or down time? Yes, I usually try to take active recovery days and stretch/roll and either swim or cycle. Occasionally I will take a day totally off to let my body recover. If something starts to bother me then I will drop mileage and focus more on resting and recovering in order to stave off injury.

What injuries have hampered your training over the past year? No real injuries, just minor hip tightness due to neglecting stretching and rolling.

What type of running shoes do you prefer? I like Topos for trails in order to get a closer more natural feel, and Hokas for the roads in order to lower the impact that my body takes.

Do you stretch? Yes! I do a dynamic stretching routine before and then after a workout. I will also foam roll and stretch, and try to do yoga a few times a week.
What are your favorite running routes? For roads I like running the Bayou loop (9-10 miles), Veteran’s park to Barrancas country club (~11 miles), the airport loop (7 miles), and a loop I’ve designed for myself around UWF campus (5+ miles).  For trails I like to run the Games loop off of Pate road, or run from UWF boardwalk.

What running resources do you like that would benefit someone else? Use those around you as resources. There is always someone more knowledgeable than you that is most likely willing to pass that knowledge on to you. Keep a running journal. I like to use the TP Therapy YouTube page to find spots to foam roll when something is bothering me. Also, PRA speed work on Monday nights at 6 pm at UWF track! Shout out to Caleb Carmichael for doing a great job on getting people race ready!

What advice do you have for beginning or experienced runners to help them with their training? Be patient. Results don’t come over night and while you might not meet your goals for that racing season, you are still building up a foundation that may very well payoff in the next season. As one of my best friends told me recently when I wasn’t excited about my performance at a race “You might not have run your best race today, but you ran your best race for the day.” So don’t let poor performances get you down, learn from them. Even the best athletes have off race days.