I’ve always had an issue with dreaming big. This time is no different.
As I’ve been running for a while, my dreams have taken on bigger proportions. I want to keep going for marathons and better my times, but also would love to do an Ironman. We’ll see where that takes me..
In any case, below are 10 tips that I would give any aspiring runner:
- Set a goal. Training without a goal is hard to maintain. Whether it be a 5km, 10km or 50km race, set your target and go for it.
- Go see a sports doctor. Get him to do a lactate threshold test and an ECG. Then you will know exactly what zones to train in and your doctor can set you up with a personalized plan. It is worth every penny. It cost me €130 which is nothing in the grand scheme of things.
- Get running shoes that fit your running style. Over 50% of all running injuries are due to people wearing the wrong shoes. There are plenty of running stores that offer specialized tests that show you your pressure points. They’ll then get the perfect shoe for you, you’ll feel the difference straight away.
- If you’re male, Vaseline is your friend. Get a big tub and don’t be afraid to use it. Nipples are the obvious ones, but the inside of your thighs and your scrotum deserve some too. Failure to use it may lead to horrible nipple chafe and annoying scrotum wounds. Trust me, I’ve been there.
- Register for a race. Don’t put it off. Once you’ve registered and paid the fee, you will want to make the most of it!
- Long slow runs can be very boring but they do wonders to prepare your body for what is to come, especially when training for long races. If you are injury prone then this is exactly what you need in your first month of training.
- Make your workout a routine, it will give you a better shot at keeping it going. A lunch runs with colleagues or a standard weekend long run are a good start!
- Find support from friends and family. If you are training for a big event, you will need to sacrifice time, which will be a lot easier if your loved ones support you.
- Training for something like a marathon takes character. There will be moments when you think you really don’t fancy a run: “not another 18km…”. That’s when you need to show character and force yourself to go outside, rain or sunshine. The feeling afterwards will be twice as good if you managed to convince yourself to get off the couch.
- Most of all, enjoy yourself. Go out there and have fun, discover places close to your home that you never even knew existed. Meet people along the way, there’s always others out running and a smile goes a long way!
I’d love to hear from you if you have any other tips!