The birds are chirping, the temps are rising and the running season is off to a start! The inaugural race, the 2016 Glass City Marathon, is quickly approaching. How are you feeling about your training? There are a couple problems that runners may face around this early season stage that can lead to panicking and frustration. Below are a couple easy tips on how to deal with some of those potential issues.
- “I cannot go the distance.”
- Slow it down. What pace are you setting for your long runs? Your greatest distance run for the week should be your slowest. Pace yourself 45 seconds to 1 minute per mile slower than your race pace goal or stay in heart rate zone 2.
- Get the right fuel. See “Fueling the Endurance Machine” by Ryan Leone, MEd, MFN, RD.
- Cross Train. Incorporate at least one long and slow cross training day per week. This allows you to build cardiovascular and muscular endurance without adding extra running mileage to your schedule.
- “I cannot get my speed up.”
- Hills and speed intervals. Use one or two of your lower distance runs to incorporate hills and speed intervals.
- Become more efficient. Hone your running skills so you don’t waste energy with excessive vertical movement.
- Strength Train. In season strength training is recommended 2 days per week.
- “I hurt.”
- Allow yourself to recover. Are you giving yourself 1 day off or appropriately actively resting?
- Check your cadence. Running significantly less than 180 steps per minute indicates that there are likely several factors that are linked to running injuries present. Increasing your cadence to around 180 steps per minute can significantly reduce those factors and pain with running. See “The Foot Strike Debate: Does it Matter?”
- Check your training. Are you appropriately running long runs and only doing 1-2 days per week of speed or hill intervals?
- Get help. If you are hurting enough during runs that it alters your gait OR you are hurting when you are not running (at rest or with normal daily activities), STOP. Those are red flags that indicate you should get medical advice. You can come directly to see a physical therapist. Call 419-318-7019 or go towww.toledophysicaltherapy.com to receive specialized care and return to running ASAP!
*A lot of this content will be described in greater detail in upcoming blog posts. Follow the Elite PT Facebook page to stay current when new blogs are posted!