The word is out, I have officially been entered into the KFM Gun Run, where I will be doing the half marathon #prayforme. In reality, I could struggle my way through a half marathon tomorrow. I’d probably be crawling over the finish line with a really crappy time…but I could. However, I want to do this properly and also enjoy it. I’m putting my years of researching for previous clients into action, to hopefully cross the finish line with a smile and while still standing.
A lot of people begin training for running events thinking they just have to run and keep running further and further until they can run the length of the race; which probably does work, but it’s not optimal. So here are my five tips which if you consider during your training, You will become fitter, faster and less prone to injury!
- Don’t forget to Cross train. If you find a running program online, it will probably have a day or two of ‘cross training’. NO this does not mean, jump on the cross trainer, but in fact, it means, your strength and power work in the gym or at home. A lot of people neglect their strength training when running, which is why runners can be so prone to injury. You need strong glutes (butt muscles), legs, back and core(abs) to enable you to run with good posture and prevent putting pressure on your joints. Remember, strength training is the foundation of EVERY training. I will be continuing my strength training plan and ebook while preparing for this half marathon.
- Warm up and cool down… BLAH BLAH BLAH you’ve heard it all already. But the question is, do you do it? I used to just wake up and run, without activating and stretching my muscles and mobilizing my joints. Likewise, I would return from a run, and carry on with my day, without cooling down. But now that I’m a bit older, a warm up and cool down is definitely needed! As soon as your muscles become too tight, you’re pulling your body out of alignment and again are making yourself prone to injury. Spend 5-10 minutes before a run warming up and foam rolling and the same when you return. (Let me know if you want me to post my foam rolling routine video on my Instagram stories.)
- Even if you’re training for the 10km or the marathon it’s still important to incorporate sprint training and hill sprints into your workouts. Adding sprint training into your plan will be the key to increasing your speed. You can switch up the distance too. I live on the side of a mountain, so you can find a hill close to your house and try 8-10 hill sprints and rest until your back to the bottom of the hill. You’ll probably want to vomit after your sprint sessions, but you’ll thank me when you’re knocking time off your next marathon!
- Track your sessions. I’m currently using a Polar watch I’ve had for years, and it’s awesome because I’m able to track my pace, my heart rate, and log all of my workouts so I can look back and see progression throughout my training. If you don’t have a fitness watch, try log to the best of your knowledge in a notebook so that you can use your improvements as motivation.
- Recovery, Refuel and Re hydration. If you ask any other ASICS Frontrunner athlete what the most important thing is throughout their training, they will tell you it’s the things they do away from the training itself. Recovery is VERY important, especially when you’re putting your body through so much stress. Things like adequate amounts of sleep, and I might start taking some extra magnesium to help muscle recovery. It’s also important to make sure you’re Refueling properly. You can do all of the training in the world, but if you’re not giving your body the fuel it needs you will eventually reverse all of your hard work. Eat well-balanced meals of proteins, fats, and carbs and have regular snacks throughout the day. And finally Re hydration!
I hope these tips have helped you guys, and if there are any more specific things you’d like me to blog about, drop me a message on Instagram and I am more than happy to share some tips along the way as I take on the next 13 weeks.
Training starts today with a short and easy treadmill run just to get my blood flowing again after 2 weeks of barely any training. (I was in Mozambique on holiday)
All my love!