teammac Definitions

These are terms used by Coach Mac and members of teammac that may not be familiar to other runners.


a type of runner who benefits from the upper end of weekly mileage; a workhorse whose talent is strength as opposed to speed; race times will improve merely by adding mileage, even if just easy miles. The extra mileage will particularly help the bricklayer hold pace at the end of the race. Taper and recovery are still important, but the bricklayer can handle the extra mileage without injury or fatigue. Most runners lean toward the bricklayer category. Test yourself by racing after adding mileage for several weeks before the taper, or discuss with Coach Mac how much of a bricklayer you are.


a very slow, easy and short group run, usually at the beginning of the workout that serves as a warmup and non-challenging jog to the workout location; in the bus the group typically does not spread out beyond the size of a greyhound bus and only moves as fast as the slowest person on the bus wishes to go; the bus is a good time for social chatter and catching up with teammates and is very non-competitive by nature.

Castle Hill Fitness (CHF)

the water stop at 12th/Lamar used for some of the tm long runs.  It is located by the staircase near the front door to the gym.

Coach Mac Special

the challenging trademark long run of teammac; it ranges in distance from 11-24 miles and encompasses the rolling hills of Austin; for the base route start from TownLake YMCA and take the trail to the rock, then north on Johnson Creek bike path to Enfield and head east and the route will take you to Austin Java at Lamar for water, then 12th Street to the capitol, right on Colorado to 11th, head east on 11th and up Red River heading north, around Hancock Golf Course for water, west on 38th to Speedway then north to UT’s intramural fields (IF) and head west outside of south fence line to the water stop, or add a little by heading north on Guadalupe to 51st or continue to Ave H then south to 46th street and back to water stop, then south on Guadalupe to 38th and head west on 38th as it becomes 35th, then over MoPac to Exposition for water, continue west to Mt. Bonnell Rd, run up Mt. Bonnell to Mt. Bonnell Dr to Balcones and return to 35th to Exposition for water, then finish the run south on Exposition to Enfield and east to Austin Java at Lamar for water and south on Lamar back to the Y. You can add more mileage by adding loops at Hancock Golf Course, or you can run less mileage by not running Mt. Bonnell or not going to IF but coming back to store from Hancock Golf Course on 38th and Lamar.

Coach’s Second

an extra second added to each 200 meter split, no matter what the distance of the repeat, in order to accommodate for bad weather or other challenging conditions encountered in the workout; as an example, if you normally run a 47 second 200 meter split during the assigned workout, then the coach’s second means you run the 200 meter split one second slower in 48 seconds, and continue adding this second per 200 for the total distance of the repeat (so a 1000 meters at 47 seconds per 200 = 3:55, and the coach’s second allows you to have a total time for the 1000 meters of 4:00).

Generator Athlete Lab (GAL)

meeting place for teammac workouts, 800 W. Cesar Chavez, west side of old Seaholm Power Plant; a recovery lab and performance center, discounts available for tm members.  You can park on the street or in the garage for Trader Jo’s.  GAL will provide a 1-hour free parking validation.

Johnson Creek Trail Tunnel

the tunnel where teammac does hill repeats; it is about a mile north of the rock; get on Johnson Creek bike path across the street from the rock and follow it north through one tunnel at about a quarter mile and continue to the next tunnel for the hill workout and water stop.

Lady Bird Lake Trail

formerly “Town Lake” trail,  a 10.1 mile running trail that loops around Lady Bird Lake from MoPac (Loop 1) on the west to Longhorn Dam on the east with several shorter loops available depending on which bridge you use to cross Lady Bird Lake, from west to east– Pfluger Footbridge, South First Street Bridge, Congress Bridge, I-35 bridge; note the Lamar Bridge is only for emergency crossing and not part of a trail loop.


the supplement drink provided at teammac workouts, made up of 3 scoops of Cytomax, 1 scoop TAG (l-glutamine), 1 scoop BCAA (branch chain amino acids), 1 scoop of GlycoLoad, all mixed with 1 gallon of water and add ice.

Mile Markers

the mid-calf high markers on the side of the Lady Bird Lake trail at .25 mile distances; the zero mile marker is on the south side of Lady Bird Lake just west of the South First Street bridge; the markers increase in quarter mile segments as you go clockwise on the trail crossing over the Longhorn Dam in east Austin and returning nearly all the way to the point of beginning, the ten-mile marker being on the trail by the Hyatt Regency on the south side of Lady Bird Lake just east of the South First Street bridge.

Montopolis Loop

an approximately 4-mile run east of Longhorn Dam and the Lady Bird Lake trail; at the 7-mile marker just south of the dam on the trail continue for about 100 meters to a trail that bears to the right, follow this trail north and east as it heads through a tunnel toward the softball fields; follow around the outfield and east through a wooded area, to a street and east past a playground, uphill to US 183 where you take a left and cross the Montopolis Bridge heading north; after you cross the bridge follow the bike path across Cesar Chavez to 5th Street, then west on 5th Street to Pleasant Valley Dr; at Pleasant Valley Dr take a left back to Longhorn Dam.

The Natural

a type of runner who is naturally gifted with his or her speed for distance; a thoroughbred who gets fast and hits peak race times with minimal effort and training, more suited for the lower end of weekly mileage.  The Natural can get fatigue or injure easily by doing too much weekly mileage.  Quality workouts remain important, even though weekly mileage is less.  The Natural will surprise you with a great race when it looks like he or she has not done enough mileage in training.  A smaller percentage of runners can be classified as or near the Natural.  Test yourself by racing when you have trained on the lower end of weekly mileage for several weeks, or discuss with Coach Mac how much of the Natural you are.

The Rock

a famous meeting point for Austin runners; the rock is a waist-high granite marker on the north side of the MoPac (Loop 1) footbridge under MoPac; it is about 30 meters east of a stretching area for runners and 10 feet south of Veterans Drive.

Stratford Loop

an approximately 4-mile hilly run that begins and ends at the rock; head west up Veteran’s Drive, then left on Lake Austin Blvd heading west to Red Bud and take a left to Stratford; take a left onto Stratford and return to the rock over the MoPac footbridge.

T.F.N. Nutrition

the supplements sponsor of teammac; where to get the finest supplement info for running from Yvonne Graham, former world’s top 2 fastest woman in the 1500 and 3000 and expert on the needs of the hard-training running lifestyle; located at 13776 N Highway 183, Suite 125, Austin 78750, by 24 Hour Fitness at N 183 and Lake Creek Parkway, 512-219-1334.

Weather Policy

teammac trains in almost all kinds of weather, except workouts will be postponed or cancelled in the event of lightning, and workouts will be cancelled in flooding or icing conditions.  Contact Coach Mac at 512-826-4545 if you have any questions about cancellation due to weather.  Many times when lightning is present, the storm will pass through the area, and the workout can go forward after a short delay.  A delay of more than 45 minutes will probably mean the workout gets cancelled.  If a workout is cancelled, you should not do the workout anyway, as it was cancelled for safety reasons.  While all teammac members assume the risk of training, this risk is specifically assumed by any runner who continues with a workout after it has been cancelled.

Weekly mileage

the total mileage for the week beginning on Monday and ending on Sunday; the lower end of the mileage represents the least amount of mileage per week recommended by Coach Mac when training for any distance besides the marathon, and the upper end represents the maximum weekly mileage recommended in training for any distance.  To get to the maximum mileage you should take it in steps by increasing weekly mileage 10-15% per week until you get to the max.  You do not want to increase toward the max or continue there more than two weeks in a row, dropping back for a week to the lower end of weekly mileage or to 75% of the increased level, then returning to increasing the mileage or holding at the max for two weeks.  The amount of weekly mileage is completely up to the individual runner, except that marathoners will end up doing more than the lower end by completing the marathon workouts.  See definitions for the Natural and the bricklayer.

Yasso 800s

a workout made famous by Bart Yasso of Runner’s World where you run 800 at your goal marathon time except in minutes and seconds instead of hours and minutes; for example, if you’re goal in the marathon is 3 hours and 30 minutes, the split for the Yasso 800 should be 3 minutes and 30 seconds.  The recovery is a 400 jog in the same time as the Yasso 800, or in the example 3 minutes and 30 seconds.  Then repeat until the designated number of repeats is accomplished.  The peak workout will typically be 9-10 Yassos.

Zilker Mile

a one-mile course near Barton Springs swimming pool; the course starts at the east end of the street that is just south of the Zilker xmas tree; head west on that street and take the 1st left at the next street and go downhill then take the 1st right and go up a hill heading toward MoPac; at the top of the hill take the 1st right and follow the street back to the point of beginning.


the premier speed workout of teammac, especially for marathon training; run 1000 meters (2.5 laps) at 10k effort, then immediately run 1000 meters at mgp (marathon goal pace) which is 6 seconds per 200 slower than your 10k pace, then immediately begin another 1000 meters at 10k effort without any break, followed immediately by 1000 meters at mgp without a break, so forth and so on for several sets, usually between 4-8 sets with a set meaning the 1000 at 10k plus the 1000 at mgp (in other words, a set equals a total of 2000 meters); occasionally the efforts will be reversed where you run the first 1000 at mgp followed by a 1000 at 10k pace.