Today was my first long run in two weeks (high fat/virtually zero carb eating does not mix well with long distance running), I knew it was going to be tough but I had to do 6-7 miles according to my training plan. I decided to run the same route as I ran two weeks ago – but backwards. This meant I had one steady uphill for about 2 miles, then a long steady downhill, then one sharp hill for about 500 metres and lots more downhill – rather than what felt like about 5 miles of slow steady climbing with a big downhill in the middle. As I was heading up said sharp hill desperate to stop I heard the voice of one of my running buddies from days gone by in New Zealand, a lovely lady called Karen Justice.
Always run up the hills – you can recover going down them
There she was like a running angel speaking in my ears. Either that or I was having some kind of carb deprivation induced auditory hallucination. But anyway, theory is that running uphill strengthens you mentally and physically so if you can do it, you should – it’s something I always try and do, particularly on the short sharp hills.
This got me thinking of other tips I’ve picked up over the years from various runners, coaches etc and I came up with four more I always remember. They are…
Time on your feet is what counts – Arian Vitali, running buddy
Even if you have to walk sometimes, you’re still getting the miles in
The night before, the night before a race is the most important sleep – Gary Regtien, founder of the RatRace Auckland.
I always, always go to bed early that night now and never stress if I wake up on the hour, every hour the night before. Because I don’t stress, I fall straight back to sleep again and get a good night’s rest anyway
Unless you want to be out there all day, you have to work on your speed – Dean Hodgkin, personal trainer
Admittedly, this one I haven’t managed to integrate into my own training yet and I am out there all day – but I do think it’s something I need to integrate – soon!
Dead Last Finish beats Did Not Finish which greatly trumps Did Not Start – motto of the WISH Team
Yep, proved that one the other week!
I’ll also add one more of my own
Sprint the last 100-200 metres (or even just the last ten) of every long training run
If I can do that I know I’ve got more left. That gives me the confidence to up my mileage next week.
Admittedly this week that didn’t happen – me and The Wall, we met today at about six miles. My last one and a bit were torture and a mix of running and walking. Next week I’ll have more in the tank and will be back to my ‘sprint’ finish.
So what’s the best tips you’ve been given or want to share?