How to Improve Your Running Stamina With These 3 Tips
Good stamina is key to getting the most out of your running program—or from any other form of cardiovascular training for that matter. For instance, in order to benefit from your running workout, you ought to be able to keep the activity on the go for more than 20 minutes, 30 at the most. Low stamina can make your workout a real struggle. Not only that, your life quality and overall well-being will suffer greatly due to the lack of stamina.
Therefore, improving your stamina is crucial—for both the active and the sedentary person. For that, here are 3 ways to increase running stamina while minimizing the likelihood of injury, fatigue and burnout.
Set a Realistic Goal
The first step for good stamina development is setting the right goals. The right goals are realistic goals. If you aim too high without first building your endurance and cardiovascular foundation, you’ll only hurt yourself. Instead, aim at setting challenging but realistic goals and build on that.
For instance, if you’re a new comer to the sport of running, the 10K run is no option. Instead, start off slowly and build the intensity up gradually. Go for shorter distances and build on that. Sometimes you may even need to start with a walk-run-walk pattern to build your stamina without running the risk of a burnout. As you get stronger, eventually, you’ll be able to run 10K distance without much huffing and puffing.
Add More Miles
After building your foundation, you can up the ante and get your stamina level through the roof. Your first option should be to gradually increase your weekly mileage from the one to the next. Sticking with the same 5K run will do your stamina no good. In fact your stamina may decrease as there isn't much stress provided thus no room for your body to grow.
The safest way for increasing your weekly running mileage while steering clear of injury and overtraining is to stick with the 10% rule. You only increase your mileage by 10% from one week to the next. For instance, if your current weekly mileage is at 10 miles, aim to achieve 11 or 11.5 miles next week, and so on.
Follow this pattern for 3 weeks. Take the fourth week as recovery. During this recovery week, you’ll cut back on your running distance or chose to cross-train. Whatever works for you. Taking ample recovery helps your body adapt and readjust itself to the training load so it can get stronger for the future workouts.
Keep Running Regularly
Going for a couple runs around the block and expecting to enjoy good stamina for life is futile. And waste of time and energy. In fact, if you want to keep your stamina on the high for the long term, you need to be consistent with your running training. Giving up on running after a couple of months of training will get you back to the starting point.
The best way to make your running a regular thing is to turn it into a habit. According to Tony Schwartz, the author of « the power of full engagement » (an excellent book on productivity and personal management), the best way to build a habit is by doing the activity on a consistent basis, non-stop, for 4 consecutive weeks. After that, the activity gets ingrained into your body and nervous system. As a result, going for that early morning run will be no trouble.
About the Author
David Dack is a runner and an established author on weight loss, motivation and fitness.
Check out http://www.runnersblueprint.com/weightlossrunning.html for a Step-By-Step Beginners Blueprint for Starting a Running Training Program
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