Achieve More in '24
Within this article is the only guide you need this running season, giving you a few short tips and tricks to better yourself for your big running events coming up in 2024.
Firstly, strength training. Some people think that the key to increasing your running ability is doing bucketloads of cardio, and although true, that it will increase your fitness, it doesn’t make your body as strong as strength training would. By lifting weights and increasing muscular strength and endurance, you give your body the ability to work faster and harder with less effort. Some workouts to include are: Deadlifts, Squats and box jumps. Lift more in ‘24.
Secondly, another aspect of training that every runner must include to get the best out of their run is flexibility training. Training your joints with different types of stretching such as dynamic stretching & PNF stretching, these stretching methods allow you to increase your range of motion, which means less strain on joints when those legs are swinging getting those strides in. Stretch more in ‘24.
Another key thing in running is speed. Breaking PBs, getting sub 40 minutes in every 10k you do and ultimately just increasing your athletic prowess. One method of increasing speed is by doing the things mentioned above, but as well as those, you should also be incorporating sprints and shorter, quicker and flatter routes within your running regime. Also, wearing more lightweight, high-quality gear. Finally, just set yourself goals and times to beat every time you step out to run. Sprint more in ‘24.
On the flip side to speed is endurance. Having good endurance allows you to push beyond your limits when you run, knocking down that brick wall we all hit when out for a long run, and conquering whatever is laid out in front of you. One method for increasing endurance is of course going on long runs often. Do lots of cardio training to increase your cardiovascular fitness, and incorporate interval training to push further when you don’t feel like it. Ultimately, go running at a slower pace but for longer. Endure more in ‘24.
The one thing that goes hand in hand with everything we have mentioned so far is target setting. When running whether a beginner or veteran it is important to give yourself SMART targets. Goal setting helps you reach milestones by setting goals, it also helps you be able to keep running interesting so that you don’t get mentally drained while doing it. Ultimately target setting helps you to be able to feel good about running so that you keep doing it. But remember, keep them specific, keep them measurable, keep them achievable keep them realistic, and keep them within a good time boundary. Keep them SMART. Accomplish more in ‘24.
Once you feel like you have mastered the roads and the fast routes, the best thing for you to do is to change your scenery. Try a trail-route. Whether it be Hulne Park at Alnwick Castle or Hamsterley Forest. There are numerous trails available for you to run. Running on these country trails can provide you with a great feeling of positivity and gives you great mental health benefits, experiencing beautiful surroundings away from the city roads might be just what you need to make your run more interesting again. Explore more in ‘24.
Something that can make running even better is to run with a friend. The easiest way to gain friends with an interest in running is to join a running club, not only does that give you benefits for entering races such as affiliated discounts and such. It also gives you lots of socialisation while you are running which creates a more fun environment and makes running more enjoyable. Have fun more in ‘24.
Finally one of the ultimate goals for every avid runner is to run an ultra. An ultra is any distance over a marathon. So it could be as small as 30 miles or as big as 100 miles. Once you start running marathons with ease you should start thinking about an ultra, start small with a small increase over 26 miles. Try it out and see how it feels, challenge your physicality and your mentality and see if you have what it takes to run an ultra. Challenge more in ‘24.
All of the above was written to help you, whether a seasoned veteran or a beginner in running, work towards achieving more in ‘24.