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Are you new to running and wanting to build up your stamina? Or are you a seasoned professional who wants to push yourself to the limit to complete a long-distance running goal? Have you set a New Year’s resolution to run a half marathon? Here at Dot Dot Loans, we understand that there are runners out there of all different abilities and strengths who might be looking for a little advice, so we’ve sought the insight from bloggers who are undertaking their own running challenges.
With winter on its way, pushing yourself to get outside to get some training completed is harder than ever, so we’ve put together a few top tips to ensure that you’re ready to run to the best of your ability whatever the circumstances may be:
When training for a race, it’s vital that you think about your nutrition, even as a beginner. Not only does eating correctly give you the energy you need to make it to the finish line, it also means that you’re looking after your body properly. Try to eat a mix of slow releasing carbohydrates with quality protein. It sounds complicated but in reality, there's an abundance of quick and tasty meals that you can throw together quickly. Pasta is well known as a runner's favourite and is great to have at lunch time if you are planning a run later on in the day.
There are loads of new pieces of technology out there to make running as enjoyable as possible. If you love listening to music as you run, investing in a pair of wireless headphones may be a great idea. On the other hand, if you love beating your goals and achieving a new PB each time you run, download the Strava app and track your routes. Other great apps for tracking your progress include Nike+ or Runkeeper, both allowing you to share your stats with friends and family at the same time to keep you feeling motivated.
Long-distance running is as much of a mental battle as a physical one. While your stamina needs building to complete a long-distance run, you also need to prepare your mind and focus on having a determined mentality to complete the race. A great way to build up to a long-distance run is to train for smaller races and keep gradually building up. The Great North Run is a popular half marathon to aim for and has a great atmosphere and a mix of both professional and amateur runners competing.
Bear in mind that you will be fighting your body for most of the competition, your legs will ache like never before, your feet will be swollen and tired from all the training you've been doing and you'll find you ache in places you never thought could ache. But, the euphoric feeling you’ll get when you do cross that finish line will be worth it!
By following our top running tips, whatever your ability or running style, you’ll be able to pound the pavements for a little longer next time you take to the tracks!