What do you do when you are not running to help your running?
It is so easy to fall into the habit of finishing your run, taking a shower and getting caught up in the rest of your day. It is easy to skip out on the other little things that we can do each day to help our bodies to recover, get stronger and to prevent injuries.
My training for the Boston Marathon started two weeks ago. I have already fallen into the habit of just doing the prescribed run for the day and brushing off all of the little things that I know I should be doing if I really want to get faster and prevent injuries. I am making it a goal starting today to remember to do all of the other things to help me to hit my goals for my upcoming races.
Squat. I always notice huge improvements in my running when I am doing more squats than miles. Strong glutes help me to power up hills, endure longer and get injured less often. There are so many variations of squats that you can try, i.e. plie, single-leg squats, weighted squats, squat pulses and jumping squats!
Read about it. Is there a part of running that you struggle with — nutrition, getting faster, dealing with injuries, or even your breathing? Read up on the topic and find ways to improve your weaknesses!
Refuel. Eat something rich with carbohydrates and protein 30-60 minutes after finishing your workout. Fill up on some nutrients and give your body what it needs after working hard! After a hard speed workou,t I don’t usually feel hungry at all but I know that eating something (even just some chocolate milk!) will help to speed up recovery.
Work out that core. For some strange reason, I would choose almost every other workout on the planet over core work. It just is not my favorite. BUT I know that having a strong core will make me faster and less likely to get injured. That is reason enough to carve out moments several times each week for my core. One of my favorite core workouts is 8 minute abs because it burns. I also love the outfits and the music on the video.
Put your foam roller or Tiger Tail in plain sight. Foam rolling is so beneficial to use during training. Having it out will remind you to use it throughout the day. Foam rolling is very similar to getting a deep-tissue massage. It helps to prevent injuries and increase flexibility!
Give yourself a power nap every once in a while if you can. All you need is just a few minutes. If you started your day with a hard workout and you are wanting to speed up your recovery, turn off the electronics midday for a bit to recharge your body. The elite runners schedule naps into their day all of the time!
Hit the sack early. Facebook, Instagram and the book you are reading will be there in the morning. Get to bed a little earlier so that you can wake up refreshed and ready to run.
Invest in yourself. If reaching different running goals is important to you, then invest in them. This may mean a sports massage or a trip to the physical therapist if things aren’t feeling right.
Find balance. Do what is best for you in this season of life. Find a healthy balance of how much you can dedicate to running right now. We are all at different places in our lives, so stick to what brings you happiness!
Keep on running!