6 Running Tips When Training Gets Tough

Are those chilly mornings, not to mention the hectic holidays, putting a damper on your running regimen? You’re not alone. This time of year can upset the most disciplined runner. Just ask Tyler Webb. An avid runner who recently started racing ultras, Tyler, who holds a degree in health and fitness studies, has overcome plenty of training obstacles along the way. Here, the Exercise Physiologist for LifeStart, triathlete, certified spin instructor and Intrinsic Biomechanist shares his stick-with-it running secrets…

So you signed up for the Arizona Rock n’ Roll Marathon. What a great way to start 2014 on the right foot (no pun intended). But you forgot to account for the dreaded holidays. Why dreaded you ask? Food, food and more food. But while the holiday hangover is bad for training both mentally and physically, not all is lost. Follow these 6 tips to get back on the right track by New Year’s.

1. A missed workout is not worth crying over. Sure you’ve been following a strict regimen for weeks (if the plan says run 10 miles, you run 10 miles). However, an extra day off here or there is important both mentally and physically. The body needs recovery time and an extra day of rest is not going to lose those hard-earned gains. If anything, it might help make your future runs that much better.

2. Don’t be a slave to your training plan. Adapt. Travel, family, social engagements, etc. All of these things can get in the way of workouts. Don’t allow a change in plans throw off your workouts. Have a 90-minute run planned but can only find 45minutes? Take it and love it. Training needs to be adaptable and fun.

3. Calories in for Calories out. The treats don’t end at Christmas… you’ve still got a stash of Santa Claus cookies, and then come the New Year’s Eve nibbles and cocktails. Keep it simple and remember that our calories in should match our calories out. Eat a healthy breakfast before your New Year’s bash and get a high intensity workout in beforehand.

4. TLC. The body needs and wants TLC. The weeks and miles on the pavement take a toll on the body. So don’t hesitate to schedule a massage… or get out the foam roller and stretch. I use the foam roller religiously and take extra time for care in the month leading up to a race.

5. Don’t lose sight of your goal. We all have reasons for signing up for a race. Some are competitive, while others are personal goals. Marathon training can become monotonous and overwhelming, especially through the holidays; take time in the month and weeks leading up the race to remember why you wanted to complete the race. When I hit a training slump, I always go back to why I train and compete in the first place: because I love it!

6. Have fun! The biggest thing to remember is that training should be fun. The journey will have plenty of bumps along the way and January 19th can seem like forever away at times, but it’ll come and go in the blink of an eye. Enjoy the journey and embrace the setbacks. I’ve had plenty of setbacks throughout my career and every time I come back with a greater sense of determination and joy for the sport.

Tyler Webb
Tyler Webb
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