LETS RUN FASTER, TOGETHER!
Do: Start Slow
Sometimes, we are all guilty of starting too fast and fade halfway through the run. We've heard trainers and pro's reminding us to start slow, and as much as we know this, we too fall victim to the need for speed. Although you've heard it a million times, we still think its super important enough to remind you for the million and one: Start very slowly for the first few minutes of your run and simply focus on form. Feel your knee-drives, foot-strikes, and toe-offs, but don’t exert yourself! Also, try not to pick up the pace when you feel bored, let yourself come to a natural rhythm. The run is a progression so allow your body to lead.
Don’t: Skip Warm-up and Cool-down
Warm-ups may seem like extra work, but that extra work will pay off in the future. Try 5 minutes of light dynamic stretching and calisthenics before you hit the pavement. You can do the exact same movements, slower and with deeper breaths as your cool down. Your body will love you for it. Remember you can do any movements that work for your body, and that will stretch/warmup the muscles you need to train and race.
Do: Plan Your Run
Think about how far you are running and what your goals are for that run. You should have different strategies for different distances. For shorter distances, try dividing your runs into four stages. Start slow for the first quarter, speed up for the second,run your natural pace more for the third, and run as fast as you can for the fourth. Set the pace for each quarter, conserve your energy, and finish as fast and strong as possible.
On longer runs like 10k’s and half-marathons, try to get progressively faster throughout. Starting slowly will enable you to fine-tune your stride and conserve energy for a strong finish. If you burn out in the beginning, you’ll end up losing a lot of time in the latter stages of the run.
Don’t: Quit Too Soon
A lot of pains will go away within the first mile. Some of the pain does include our mental dialogue. Its pretty easy to give up before we even catch our stride, but don’t give in at the first sign of adversity. Those cramps will pass! Those negative thoughts aren't real! You can do it!
Do: Focus On Your Breath and Rhythm
While running, breath in for two steps and breath out for two steps. Also count breaths (400 breath cycles usually equals one mile). While this breathing pattern is fairly typical, find what works for you and stick with it. At an easy pace, you should feel capable of holding a conversation. At a moderate pace, you should feel capable of speaking in short bursts. At a challenging pace, your lungs will to busy to be concerned about chatting it up. If you feel like your lungs are holding you back from your goals, try some breathing exercises once or twice a week.
Do: Try Out New Running Techniques
For a lot of people, running without music is torture. However, what we have come to find is that when you're going for a personal record, music can keep you out of the moment, out of your rhythm, distract you from your breathing– and ultimately can slow you down. Before race day, do some practice runs with no music so that you know what to expect. But since music is pretty personal, try it and see which works best for you. Because you could be as speedy as ever when youre listening to J. Beibs. This goes for any other techniques around running. Try out gummies, breakfast options, shoes, clothing, and training accessories to see which contribute to your best time.
Runners are just as unique as each race. Figuring out what works for you will always help you reach your Personal Record. You'll find more running tips from our Content Writer Sabrina here.