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10 Steps To Running Better

Image by @GreatGramPops
Image by @GreatGramPops

Yesterday marked 8 weeks until the Two Oceans Marathon. My aim is to run 21km’s (a half marathon) in under 2 hours. That’s under 6 minutes per km and I am not even close to ready. [excuses]

Whether you’re the rabbit or the tortoise, there are a few things to remember:

  1. Greet runners who pass you by. An iPod is not an excuse for being rude. I’m not saying stop, drop and ready yourself for a sweaty hug. A raised brow with a grunt is all I’m asking for.

Podcasts that I love:

Bon Apetit: Get your pasta right, every time – get the recipe here.

Timothy Maurice, Unbranded on Cliff Central: Optimal brain tips

KitchenAid2. When running with your BFF, run in single file – no one needs to be faced with drive time traffic.

3. If you’re one of those lucky people who has a dog, you would’ve noticed that Fido does not have opposable thumbs. It is your duty. DO THE RIGHT THING.

4. Measure your run. That’s the only way to push yourself further. I have used watches but you can also use free apps like Nike+ Running app or Strava.

5. Wear a cap. Even if you don’t live in Africa you’re clocking up the time spent in the sun. Skin damage is not part of the deal. I use IS Clinical SPF 50 for my face and Nivea SPF 30 for my body.

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6. Get the right shoes. Most sports stores will now be able to tell you if you need extra arch support (the level of pronation). If you’re running more than 5km you will need to buy a shoe size bigger than your foot size (YOU WILL LOSE TOENAILS). I found the Nike flyknit to be the superior choice here, irrespective of the type of sneaker. It’s soft against the front of the put that is leading your body through the km’s. I lost toenails during the Sanlam CT Marathon. It was harrowing.

7. My coach at Tri4All said one thing about my first marathon – do not wear anything new. By the time race day is upon you, you need to have a favourite pair of running underwear, socks, water bottle, energy supplement and and and. NOTHING NEW!

8. That first beer after you cross the finish line is going to feel like heavens nectar. Be sure to eat as well. We won’t talk about my mistake with this one but do as I say and not as I do. You’ll thank me.

9. Make an appointment with you physio or chiropractor for a full body flush the morning after your race. I ran 42.2km on the Sunday and saw my chiro on the Monday morning before boarding a plane to France on Monday night. I was a little tender (as expected) but had full mobility and was completely comfortable because my muscles weren’t bursting with lactic acid and my body had been realigned. Yes, we all train hard but the race is the war and systems are always firing at full throttle. You’ll save yourself some recovery time. Sounds 100% worth it to me.

10. Rest after your race. Ideally you should rest for 1 day for every mile that you run. The marathon was 26miles so 26 days rest. It’s a bit much because by this stage, training is your life. But maybe switch things up and start swimming or cycling or taking long walks on the beach.

Now onward to race day!

PS: check with your doctor before starting any training regime.

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