I have started running again after a 40-year layoff. After such a long hiatus, starting from scratch was something I was not looking forward to. However, my desire to return out-weighed those negative thoughts. After receiving a physical that cleared me to run, I started researching training tips specifically for older runners. The following is what I discovered.
Start A Journal:
Track your progress through results. I use a large block calendar. You can record everything from your weight to timing results. I even use a color code for how I felt on that day.
Set A Goal:
Keep your goal small and attainable. It will springboard you forward towards your next achievement.
Even the best runners use some form of motivation. From motivational posters to informational articles, reading the stories of others can be a great way to get you ready to run.
Get A Running Partner:
A partner will help keep you accountable and motivated.
Find The Right Workouts:
Select workouts that are reasonable. A major part of your workout should be what is called LSD (Long Slow Distance) running. Every other week, add one-to-two days of speed work. These workouts will consist of short bursts of sprints at a bit faster than race pace. Also, spend at least one day every two weeks running up and down hills at race pace. Make sure the hills are not too steep. Your running pace will increase over time. Don’t expect to set personal bests every workout. The above can be applied to track, road and treadmills.
Include Stretching And Weight Work:
Don’t overdo it. However, both are essential to improvement. As I have grown older, I find more value in flexibility, balance and endurance than strength. Combining all of these will help avoid injury and setbacks. When it comes to weights, please consult a professional.
Remember to take your time. The journey to running is enjoyable!