Decorated Local Masters Athlete Talks Training and Recovery
Congratulations to local Masters athlete, Nick Berra, on his recent success! Berra has been one busy, but very successful person in the 2013-2014 running season.
Berra participated in The World Masters Athletics Indoor Championships that took place March 25-30, 2014 in Budapest, Hungary and returned home with some hardware. Berra ran a total of 8 races in 16 days, some of which were trials and qualifying races, which certainly takes a toll on the body. Without the proper preparation and training, the body will begin to break down sooner than expected, which can really derail a runner’s plans. However, Berra went into these Championships with a positive outlook, a great deal of past success and hours of training and preparation. Berra’s training program ranges from land running, treadmill running, underwater treadmill running, strength training and more.
Here is what Nick Berra has to say about his recent success and training program:
I knew I would be turning 45 years old towards the end of the 2014 indoor season, so I tailored my training to peak after my birthday in late February. With the rough winter we had here in the Northeast I did much less running outdoors than I have in years past – the weather was too ugly and our roads and trails were often covered in snow. I used a variety of methods to try to keep the quality of my workouts where I wanted them to be – I did lots of interval workouts in the HydroWorx pool, I tried to find indoor tracks when I could during my work layovers (Ottawa, New York City). I hit an occasional elliptical machine, and then did do some tempo workouts on the roads when I could. I got in a groove in the month prior to my first big race, alternating between land and water for my “quality” workouts, then the “day after” recovery runs would almost always be in the HydroWorx pool. I was probably getting 3 or 4 workouts in a week for almost a straight month – a ton of quality work for me but, the water made it all possible with little to no soreness throughout this tough stretch. Once I started serious racing, all of the work paid off. In consecutive weeks I anchored a world record indoor 4x800m relay, broke the M45 (45-59 age group) indoor world record in the 800m in 1:56.10, won two national titles at the USATF Masters Indoor Championships in Boston, then won two world championships in Budapest at the WMA Indoor World Championships. It’s safe to say that turning 45 has been pretty good to me…
I just got back from the meet in Europe on Saturday, and I am beat. The month of solid racing took its toll on me, so despite the break in the weather I’ll probably spend the next week or so recovering in the pool on the underwater treadmill – long slow runs to start, then maybe some easy intervals to get back into the swing of things. Hopefully my outdoor season will be as fruitful as the indoor one was – I look forward to hitting the track and roads before too long with the rest of the HydroWorx Track Club.
Here are the results from Berra’s two gold medal races! Congratulations again!
Event 250 M45 800 Meter Run
World Masters Athletics: Record 1:56.10
Finals: 1st Place Berra, Nicholas (M45) United States 1:59.36
Event 262 M45 1500 Meter Run
World Masters Athletics Record: 3:57.91
Finals: 1st Place Berra, Nicholas (M45) United States 4:07.75
To learn more about underwater running, download the book, “Underwater Treadmill Running” by Alberto Salazar and Dr. Dennis Dolny>>