3 Common Mistakes That Beginners Make

By | August 19, 2014

Every runner goes through multiple stages of their running career often experiencing a whole range of emotions when they are just starting out. Once you get the first few weeks out of the way you can start building upon this foundation and running is no longer just running for the sake of it but transforms into training.

On this transition into actual structured training beginners tend to repeat history often making many of the same mistakes of the runners that came before them. Here are some tips on how to avoid these so that you can fun faster and avoid injury.

Most runners have a very monotonous style of training running at the same pace for most of their runs. You should try to start structuring your runs so that you can start running faster. Faster doesn’t necessarily mean harder but it does mean training smarter.
You can try some of these workouts to improve your speed:-

Run strides a few times a week after your easy run workouts. Strides are where you accelerate over 100m. You should start at a slow job and increase your speed until you reach about 95% of your max speed. Each stride should take approximately 25 seconds.

Once you have completed a few weeks of strides you can then incorporate fartlek workouts. Fartlek means speed play in Swedish and is a unstructured workout of time based intervals e.g. 8 x 30 secs or 5 x 2 minutes.

Consistency Is Key To Making Progress

Just like anything in life, you will only get results and improve at something when you dedicate hours upon hours honing your craft, running is no different. You are not going to see results after 1 session, you will only see results after weeks of training and not missing sessions. If you do miss a week of training don’t be surprised to see that your fitness levels have regressed and it may take a training session or two to get back into it.

Create a schedule and be sure to stick with it. Try to run at least three days a week, any less and it will be hard to see any significant improvement. Stick to that training frequency when you are a beginner, after a month you can consider increasing your frequency up to 4 days per week. Consistency is key to seeing rapid results.

Strength Training

Strength training is often overlooked by runners and most may view it as unnecessary. You don’t need to be under a barbell lifting heavy weight, bodyweight exercises are more than sufficient. Bodyweight circuit training and core routines are a great way to strengthen any weak points and reduce the chance of injury. Try to do 15 minutes of strength training after each run.

These are only bodyweight exercises so they are suitable for beginners and it isn’t complex; you don’t need special equipment and they can even be done in the comfort of your own home. Good exercises that have the most carryover for runners are lunges, squats, planks, push ups, superman. Stick with these basic exercises and as always focus on progression adding in one extra push up or holding the plank for 5 more seconds.

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