13.1 and done: 6 running tips for you
Running 13.1 miles all at once might seem impossible, but those who cross the finish line will tell you it is one of the most successful feelings in the world.
Considering giving the trek a try? Check out these tips and tricks to help you conquer a half marathon:
- Once you decide to sign up for a race, give yourself a three to four-month window for training to ensure you have enough time to train properly and prevent injury.
- Eat and drink with purpose. Runners should eat a high-carb breakfast before their run. A rule of thumb is to incorporate 30 to 60 grams of carbs per hour of run. Ideas for high-carb breakfasts include oatmeal, pancakes, egg whites, peanut butter and bananas. Dr. Sara Brown, a sports medicine physician with Advocate Medical Group, advises eating balanced meals, avoid passing on carbs because they are the main source of fuel and to only drink when thirsty to prevent the risk of overhydration.
- Incorporate core and hip strengthening, increase mileage by 10 percent a week and change your running shoes every 500 miles or six months. Dr. Brown says these things will help prevent injuries.
- Remember to warm up and cool down before and after a run. Dr. Brown says individuals should include warm up and cool down exercises. These can include different forms of stretching. Doing this can reduce the risk of injury.
- The biggest mental barrier might be commitment. In order to successfully accomplish a race this long, make sure you can commit to all the steps of training, and have enough discipline to finish.
- Last, but definitely not least, have fun!
Inspired to run? Join Advocate Health Care’s charity running team. Our unique running group allows you to choose a fund that you want to raise money for. You can select a location and specialty that is closest to your heart, whether that is improving the lives of people with cancer or Down syndrome, or raising money to provide support through ancillary services like music and pet therapy.
About the Author
Kendall Krawczyk is a public affairs intern at Advocate Health Care in Downers Grove, Ill. She is a senior obtaining a bachelor’s degree in health communication and public relations at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is the secretary of Communication Leader’s on her campus, in which she acts as an ambassador for the department of communication. She spent the last semester in Florence, Italy. In her free time, she enjoys working out, drinking coffee and spending time with her family.