There are five main factors to take into consideration when preparing to run long distances. From the off set, you will need to make sure that there are a few things which you take into consideration when starting long distance running.
It’s all in the Mind!
Initially, it is a mind-set and mentality. Although it is important to know the route which you are going to run, do not worry about being anxious of the distance, in time this will be something less daunting for you to achieve. This is especially true if you are not use to long distance running and are only starting out in this hobby or sport. Motivation is key to your success. This will mean that there will be days which you will feel unmotivated, for example in winter, when it’s cold and dark. The best way to motivate yourself during your training is to have your music to hand, and layer up with thin layers as once you start running you will not want to be lugging thick clothes with you. If you prefer some company, try pairing up with a friend.
Staying hydrated and eating healthily
As part of your preparation, it is extremely important to keep yourself hydrated. This is not only during the run itself, but during your normal day. The best way to achieve this is to pick yourself up a water bottle. Making yourself disciplined to keep yourself hydrated will help your body function during your run and in the training leading up to it. Your diet will also play a significant role. High protein and carb snacks and meals will assist in your energy levels. Such snacks as bananas, peanut butter and oats are some great examples. In turn helping you with your training and pre-planning your exercise regime. Many individuals additionally use supplements and protein shakes.
Wear for comfort not for trend
The garments you wear, especially your footwear shall be an important factor in your success to running long distances. Dependant on the terrain you choose to run, there are two may types of running shoes. Trail shoes offer good support on rough terrain, such as woods or parks. Running shoes however, are better suited to the road. Although it is great to look nice and stay on trend, be sure to remember that your main goal is to achieve your personal best in your running. The most fashionable pair of trainers may not necessarily be the best suited to the task in hand.
Keeping your pace and warm up preparation
When you initially start your training, always make sure that you stretch all of your muscles. This maybe something which is obvious, however, you would be surprised how many people forget; often later resulting in injury or pain. The limbering up of your body will help get your muscles and joints ready for the running you are about to take on. Make sure that you set a steady pace during your training, it is not a race. In order to not burn yourself out, before your end goal make sure that you take your time. During your training, it is always good to have a short break, until you have built up the stamina to go all the way. In addition, if you are struggling to run the distance, it may be advised to break up the entirety of the run into smaller sections.
Take a rest and post run recovery
After you have achieved either your training or your long distance run, you will need to make sure that you look after yourself properly. Take the time to stretch any sore and tight muscles, without doing this you will increase the potential of further injury to yourself. Eating a small meal to include carbs and protein will assist your bodies’ energy levels to recover back to normal. Drinking lots of fluid after your run shall also help with any dehydration which you may have suffered during the run. If your body is extremely sore, then a good way to assist with recovery would be an ice bath.