From nutrition to breathing and form – discover how to improve your running with advice from the experts...
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Tips for time poor runners 'Use interval training to increase your anaerobic/aerobic capacity. Focus on short bursts of running/sprinting followed by a slower pace - 1minute running at a fast pace where you can't hold a conversation followed by 2min comfortable jogging pace.' 'Set yourself a goal within a specific time limit i.e. 30min. If you are jogging at 10min per mile look to increasing your speed so your running 9.5 - 8min per mile. This increase in speed will help strengthen your legs and improve your aerobic capacity.' 'Focus on a leg-strengthening run. This can be done by running on a slight incline or hill, which will help improve the strength in your legs.' Dalton Wong @dalton_wong twentytwotraining.com
Tips for preventing injuries 'Make time for a treatment at least once a month. A massage is essential to help increase blood flood to tired muscles, help recovery and to increase flexibility. It is not a TREAT, it's vital to prevent and reduce common running injuries.' 'Have a dynamic warm-up before you run. What does that mean? It should include specific, active stretches for the hips, back, quads, hamstrings and calves. NO STATIC STRETCHES!' 'You need the right equipment to do your sport. Tennis shoes are for tennis, fashion trainers are for fashion and running shoes for running. Get yourself a good pair of trainers – they should fit properly and be comfortable.' Dalton Wong @dalton_wong twentytwotraining.com
Tips for breathing and form 'Hit the gym to help improve instabilities or weakness. If your legs or knees are weak, focus on specific leg strengthening exercises (deep squats, lunges, step ups). If you have pain in your hips or lower back, strengthen your abdominals and lower back using static and dynamic core exercises.' 'Relax! Focus on a natural breathing pattern and try not to manipulate it too much. Changing your breathing pattern can lead you to over-breathing (quick breathes) which will make you feel tired quicker.' 'Relax those shoulders - don't shrug or hold tension in your neck, shoulders or back when running.' Dalton Wong @dalton_wong twentytwotraining.com
Tips for nutrition 'Eat something before you run - it kick starts your metabolism so that it’s working properly - you will have more energy to run harder and faster, thus increasing the intensity and potential for calorie burn. Foods with a low glycemic index are best as they release energy slowly during the run. Porridge, brown toast with low-sugar peanut butter, home made muesli or scrambled eggs on wholemeal bagel are great 30 minutes before a run.' 'There’s no magic window after exercise where you can eat what you like. If you eat what you want and what you want is full of sugar or fat, you will negate the benefit of the exercise.' 'It is important to drink water while running - especially in the cold when you don't think you are sweating.' Jonathan Lomax @lomaxpt @thelomaxway lomaxpt.com
More nutrition tips 'Runners only require supplements if they are running over an hour regularly. In this case fish oils are good for joint health and protein powders and endurance supplements prevent muscle breakdown.' 'Fat burning supplements that you can buy over the counter usually only contain high levels of green tea, so you are better saving your money and hitting the supermarket!' 'Women who run regularly are in danger of getting something called 'runners heal’, which can create an iron deficit; consult your doctor if you feel lethargic or unnecessarily tired.' 'Shakes and bars are good sources of quick fix protein, but can contain additives or are mixed with sugar or sugar substitutes. They are useful if you don't eat red meat or any meat products - as they contain the full spectrum of amino acids required (including the BCAAs that the body doesn't produce itself)
TOP TIPS for runners'Before doing any physical activity, especially running, make sure you’re adequately hydrated. You don't need fancy florescent sports drinks - water is just fine. If you want something with vitamins and minerals then an unflavoured coconut water is good.' 'Get a movement assessment done and have a plan! An assessment will let you know what areas you need to strengthen and increase mobility in, so you don't pick up any injuries. From this assessment a specific exercise, stretching and running program can be prescribed. There is a saying: ‘You need to be fit to run, Not run to get fit!’' Dalton Wong @dalton_wong twentytwotraining.com