Hey everyone! Happy happy happy Friday! I am doing something a little bit different today and sharing a fun post I originally saw on Hungry Runner Girl‘s blog. Today I’m chatting about my running tips from A – Z!
Of course, if you have any running or fitness tips, be sure to leave them in a comment below!
Let’s get started : )
A: Always wear proper shoes to avoid injury. While you may be tempted by all the flashing colours, getting properly fitted for shoes is a MUST!
B: Believe in yourself. Yes, running can be challenging, but if you bring a positive mindset to it, that is half the battle. Believing that you can conquer your run will HELP you achieve that!
C: Celebrate all of your running milestones, whether it’s a 10 minute PR or a 10 second PR. Celebrate your daily runs, your strength training work outs, your tempo runs, and everything in between!
D: Doubting yourself will hinder progress and make you feel as if you are stuck in a box. There is nothing productive that comes from doubting yourself or worrying, so why do it in the first place? I mean, I get it. We are all humans, but try tip B instead! ; )
E: Experimenting on race day is a no-no. Stick with the tried and true strategies and avoid trying any new fuel or gear on race day. Your body will thank you! Nobody wants to be running to the bathroom all of a sudden mid-run because that new breakfast burrito you tried on race day isn’t sitting so well in your tummy.
F: FOAM ROLL! Hurts so good. I have a love/hate relationship with my foam roller, but I know that it will benefit me and prevent injuries in the long run. Literally, in the long run.
G: Go for it. Is there a race for a new distance that you want to sign up for? Go for it! Do you want to get faster? Go for the speed workouts! Whatever it is that you want to do or accomplish, go for it. You never know until you try!
H: Hills, hills, hills. While we may not purposely go seeking a hilly route, running hills will make you a stronger runner. You may be sore the next day, but a little foam rolling and you are on your way!
I: If you are still feeling extra sore after a run, ice. When I was training for my first few half marathons, I would stretch, foam roll, and ice after a run. I even went as far as having an ice bath which was FREEZING, but it really did help with muscle soreness.
J: I keep a running journal of my miles, how I felt during a particular run, pace, fueling, and any other workouts that I did that day. It’s a great way to reflect back on your training cycles and see what worked well and maybe what didn’t.
L: Love yourself no matter where you are in your running journey. This has been a difficult thing for me to grasp. It’s hard not to compare your chapter 5 to someone else’s chapter 25 – WOW they are fast. I’m so out of shape! Holy crap they bounce back fast after a hard race. I could never do that! Having a comparison frame of mind is never helpful to your progress, so be mindful of your thoughts and give yourself some extra love and encouragement! “Comparison is the thief of joy.”
M: Make the time. I wake up early in the morning to get my running in because I know that after work I will not want to run 8 miles. Yes, there is a level of sacrifice involved there. I’m sacrificing that extra sleep time to get my miles in, but at least after the work day is done I can go home and relax!
N: Never give up on your big goals, or your smaller goals for that matter.
O: Take ownership of your training. It is not to up to someone else to get you across the finish line. You have to own up to the task at hand or the workout at hand and just do it! You are the master of your life, after all, and it’s up to you to put in the work.
P: Post-run recovery is a must. Yes, it’s easy to just kick of your shoes, hop in the shower, and call it a day. However, taking the time to stretch, foam roll, maybe get a massage if you have the time/budget/coverage to do so, and soak in the tub is so worth it. Obviously the massage thing is a TREAT – and a wonderful one at that! – but even a short soak in the tub with some Epsom salts is so worthwhile. Oh, and remember to nourish your body with food that makes you feel GOOD!
Q: Quiet. Run without music and just let your thoughts sort themselves out. After your run you will feel refreshed, and soon enough any answers you needed to your questions will magically pop into your head!
R: REST. As much as we all want to be go go go all the time, every day, running hard with every run, resting is so important at not repairing your muscles and allowing them to recover, but it gives you a physical and mental break. My favourite rest day activity is throwing a face mask on and having an Epsom salt bath.
S: Slow down on your easy days. Your easy days are supposed to be just that: EASY! There is no hurry to get the miles in. Relax, go with the flow, and slow down.
T:Take the bad days with the good days. That is life. Not every run is great, and no every day is great. However, there is always something good in every run and in every day!
U: Use the energy from the crowd during larger races to keep you motivated. One thing that makes me so happy when I am running a race is seeing people cheer the crowd on. Go random stranger, go! It’s especially cute when little kids are standing there giving out high fives, or with signs for their parents that are running. This energy can lift your spirits and give you a boost!
V: Visualize yourself crossing the finish line. Think about how GREAT you will feel when you have accomplished your goal race. Visualization is a huge tactic used by athletes and people-alike, as it can build confidence and make the task at hand feel a lot less daunting.
W: WHY and WHAT. When you are feeling down, think about what it is that motivates you to run and WHY you run. Is it to feel clear headed after a long run? Is it for the endorphins you get? Is it for the sense of community? Find your why and keep that front of mind when you are feeling unsure.
X: X-TRAIN! Mixing up your workouts is a great way to give your mind and body a break from running and engage other muscles in your body. Plus, it can be fun! Do you love to dance? Switch it up with a Zumba work out. If you love to lift weights, incorporate that into your routine, or some yoga or pilates. Running works a ton of our large muscle groups (obviously in the lower body), but it’s important to keep things like your core and upper body in mind as it all helps us to be better runners.
Y: Yoga, yoga, and then yoga some more. Yoga has allowed me to become a stronger runner by being a great source of cross training and relaxation. While running sans-music helps quiet my mind, nothing quiets my mind and body quite like yoga. When you need a relaxing flow to stretch your muscles after a long run, I highly recommend hitting up your local yoga studio or finding a flow to do on YouTube! You can also do yoga from anywhere with Caitlin Pickett’s Virtual Yoga training!
Z: Zzzzzz. Get your sleep! No shame in the nap game ; )
I hope you guys enjoyed my A-Z tips! Remember to leave your running and fitness tips below : ) Have a great weekend!