On this edition of The Kona Edge we catch up with Pedro Cordovez and find out what his greatest asset has been in improving his Ironman run. Battling various running injuries, Pedro tells us what he has done to overcome them and continue to make progress on his run.
BRAD BROWN: Welcome back to The Kona Edge, it’s great to have you on, let’s chat some running now. We head back to Panama and it’s a great pleasure to welcome Pedro Cordovez onto the podcast.
When aches and pains start slowing you down
Pedro, thanks for joining us today. You mentioned the running and as you’re getting older you’re struggling with aches and pains, are you generally injury prone or is it just later on in the last few years that it’s starting to happen?
PEDRO CORDOVEZ: I’ve had a couple of injuries, I run, my right foot goes a little bit inwards, so I’ve had a couple of hip and groin area pains over the years. There’s those sort of pains that are symptomatic, so if I run a lot, they come back, if I run a little, they go away.
I try to keep it steady, try not to run that much on asphalt or cement, I try to find trails and run, a lot of tempo running for me, that’s what I do.
BRAD BROWN: Let’s talk about getting better from a running perspective. If you, over the years, can pin it down to one thing, what’s the one thing you’ve done that’s really helped to improve your run?
Improving the core strength to keep at Ironman run training
PEDRO CORDOVEZ: I’d say lifting weights and abdominal strength, so core strength, doing core workout and some sort of lower back weights has helped me keep form from 30km and above in a marathon. For me, I realize that it wasn’t that I didn’t have the aerobic capacity to keep running, it was just that I couldn’t, it hurt too much. My back hurt, my legs hurt, I was sort of like losing balance when I was running. I was wobbling all around and I figured it was because I wasn’t strong enough in my core area.
When I figured that out, started working the core, working on my lower back, even though I’m still wobbling, I’m wobbling a lot less.
BRAD BROWN: How many of those sessions would you typically do a week?
PEDRO CORDOVEZ: I try to do two a week.
BRAD BROWN: Brilliant. Heart rate on the run? You mentioned you train specifically to heart rate.
PEDRO CORDOVEZ: Depending on how hot it is, depending on the race, I try to keep it around 150.
BRAD BROWN: And as far as training goes, would you train generally below that 150 rate?
PEDRO CORDOVEZ: Yes, I usually try to train between 135 and 145 and then do the long runs there, then maybe three or four weeks out, I’ll do a couple of short interval sessions, maybe 200m, just enough to get some leg speed, but not enough to really pound my knees and my hips and then with that, I’ll hopefully I’ll do a 3:18 marathon on a good day.
Downhill training helps strengthen my Ironman run
BRAD BROWN: That’s incredible. Pedro, as far as your favorite run workout, what do you love doing? If you get up and go for a run, that you know, this is awesome, I love doing this?
PEDRO CORDOVEZ: There’s this one run that I do, it’s 15km, it’s an out and back 15km on trail, out 15km and back 15km, so it’s a 30km run. It’s 2% incline on the way there and 2% negative incline on the way back.
All heart rate, that’s my favourite workout. I look forward to that workout whenever I have a chance to do it because running on a downhill, for me, really takes off the pounding and helps me with the leg turnover and strength, I think it does good for me, I’d recommend it to anybody. If you have a chance of running a little bit downhill, maybe 1-2%, it’s good.
BRAD BROWN: I’ll do that all day long, I love doing that as well! Pedro, thanks so much for joining us, I’m looking forward to picking your brain a little bit about nutrition, but we’ll save that for next time out.
PEDRO CORDOVEZ: All right Brad. Take care buddy.
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