How to Prepare For a Long Distance Run

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Learn how to deal with cramps, shortness of breath, how to pace yourself and how to prepare for a run!

 

Steps

  1. Prepare the day before!
  2. Drink plenty of water the day before a run. This doesnt only help you run longer without losing your breath, but it also helps reduce the chance of getting a cramp.
  3. Eat plenty of fibre the day before your run. If you live in a town that annually holds a big race, you might have noticed that the night before, the town often holds a giant pasta dinner in town hall, or a public park.
  4. Start off on the day of the big race by waking up, and doing a few stretches/push ups/crunches, anything to get your blood pumping early, but make sure you do not over tire yourself.
  5. Eat a good breakfast! With breakfast, drink a big glass of water.
  6. Avoid sugary foods such as dough nuts for breakfast as they will not give you any energy or stamina for your run.
  7. Listen to your parents and coaches; they always tell you to stretch, and they are right. Just make sure you stretch your arms as well as your legs, because it is possible to get a shoulder cramp.
  8. Pace yourself. Find a pace and stick with it. Even if you have to slow down and fall behind the group, do not use all your energy catching up. You just conserved a little energy and the other runner will get tired and you can make your comeback. Its easier to take little fast strides, then take slow large ones.
  9. Do not change your pace!! If you start off fast, you are going to get tired fast, but once you get tired you will often find that it is harder when you try to slow down your pace. This is why you have to get a good feel for what your pace is, and stick with it throughout the whole run!
  10. Save your energy until the end. Run faster as you near the finish line. Finish strong, and save up your energy for that final sprint!
  11. Do not eat too much food before you run, it can slow you down.

Tips

  • Practice. Run at least 3 times each week.
  • Work on your abs. Crunches will help you with cramps, and stamina!
  • Get outside a lot even if its to sit and read a book on your porch.
  • If you get a cramp. Take a DEEP breath, and blow out as hard as you can until you feel like you cant stay conscious anymore!! Now this does not mean that the cramp will not come back eventually!
  • After your run, do not stop moving right away. You should always warm down and stretch after a run. A cool down might be anything from a jog to your car, or a walk to your parents!

Warnings

  • Even though you should keep your eyes ahead of you, look at the ground as well so that you will not trip over roots.
  • Do not start off too fast. Often the person who has the slowest start, wins, because of his strong finish!

Things You Will Need

  • Running Shoes
  • Water
  • A nice, safe place to run, preferably with a grassy surface, as that will not damage your knees as much as a hard, flat surface would.

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