As my blog very well knows, I adore running and I made this "A Little Running Diary" series so I can talk a little bit about it and have this hobby known more and more to my blog- seen as the whole thing is about me, lah-dee-dah! Today I wanted to give the blog a few tips when it comes to running. The tips are not conclusive but are some of the ones I follow myself!
~ Drinking water is so crucial. It's equally important just in general, of course! Drinking water before and after runs keeps the body feeling great and prepared. I always take water with me and I'd recommend this to everyone too, because if you're feeling a bit rubbish or you need a sit down or something goes wrong, you've got safety in having the water with you! Water is so important to being healthy and yet so easy to forget, but if you get yourself into the routine, it's so much easier to remember!
~ Another tip that is useful anyway is to eat well! For many reasons eating your fruit and vegetables and having good meals means being kind to your body and helping it help you when you run! One thing I like to do if I'm running later on in the day is to have a bowl of pasta at lunch time. Of course it needs to settle and all that but it always gives me the right kind of boost! Porridge and a banana in the morning is always an ace way of having a slow release of energy too!
~ To let your body change and/or become healthier, we must change it up! If, say, you've accomplished running one mile (which is ace!) and two or three times a week you're always running mile, it means your body is adapting to this kind of distance and it is simply getting used to it which isn't great. Of course if you've just achieved this, go ahead and keep doing a mile for a while when your comfortable or if you're building your confidence or getting used to it or whatever scenario, but try not to keep it as your only aim. And make sure every now and then you go back to doing a mile! One way that is great to keep going back to distances is to make sure you're changing up your pace. If you fancy a slow run, go for one! The next time go ten seconds faster and then five the time after that!
~ Find particular ways to improve! You might have your own way to make sure you're improving or you might be able to follow a friend's advice or a program online! I know a couple of friends who got into running through the Couch to 5k and it kept and keeps them on track. It gave them achievable ways to keep going and meant progressing and feeling good about themselves! As of now I'm trying to improve my pace more and more. I'm going to start this by running one mile as quickly as I can (without making myself ill!), have a minute and a half walking and then do another mile as quickly as possible and then once again after that. In time I will cut down the break in between the miles and then I'll add more distance (so, one and a half miles and then two!) and I reckon it'll improve my pace so well! I also think it'll be fun and a routine that I can always do and adapt to my ability! I will also do runs without breaks so I can see my improvement and also nice and chilled runs so I'm not always pressuring myself!
~ Warming up and cooling down. It's a classic but so very true! We are pushing our bodies so we need to make sure we're being nice to them. Warm up before you run and cool down afterwards. It doesn't take much time and yet saves you a lot of grief afterwards! Have baths with muscle relaxing bits and bobs in them; get yourself lotions and sprays to help out; be safe with your body!
~ I know it might be easier said than done but don't let it become a chore! Find ways to enjoy yourself! Do other exercises and take friends and make sure you're seeing your improvement and not dwelling on anything bad about it so you're always motivated. Change up your route; challenge yourself sometimes; don't put pressure on yourself other times!
~ Two tips I think are so incredibly important are linked: give yourself a break and if you're injured or not feeling great, don't do it- you'll do more harm than good! You can't run every day of the week or run a ridiculous amount of times and miles each week. It's actually dangerous to your body! Let your body relax and recover or your muscles aren't having the chance to repair properly before the next time and this also means your body will get so used to it in a bad way! Of course we all have different limits but having a break is something we all need! And if you're injured (in a big or not so big way), don't run (or anything else!)! I've done it myself and it's so silly to risk it and I never do any more. If my legs hurt, I won't run. If I've got a cold, I'm not going to run- it has given me a cough more often than not.
So be careful (with your body and yourself- don't put yourself in danger on your route or with your body!) and enjoy!
I really enjoyed writing this post! Do you have any tips?
Trainers & Smiles,
The Girl in the Moonlight.
P.S. You can read the last instalment to this series HERE!