Is there a way to instantly become a better runner?
I’d say so.
The running world is an incredible place to grow. We push our selves to run farther and faster while applying new techniques to achieve our goals.
Although we know change will create better outcomes, sometimes we get stuck in our old ways of running. That’s why it’s important to read about new perspectives, like what you’re doing now.
New perspectives provide new ways of thinking. We then make new decisions which change our running for the better. Instant change occurs when a new and different way replaces the usual way of thinking. Sometimes looking through a new lens is all you need to have a breakthrough in your running.
So let’s dive in. Let’s discuss how to become a better runner with 7 tips for instant improvement.
1. Rest More Run Less
One of the major issues that we face as runners is we run too much. Yes, we run too much. Sounds a bit counterintuitive, doesn’t it?
But 65%-85% of runners every year develop an injury. Whether it’s one that puts you on the sidelines or an irritation managed through a brace, ice, and ibuprofen, the odds are, as a runner, we will likely suffer an injury.
And do you know what the number one type of injury is?
The answer: overuse injury.
And overuse injuries stems from, yes you guessed it, running too much!
I’m sure we are all guilty of running too much or attempting to run through an injury. I know I am. I’ve literally changed my entire stride and cadence to train for another race because of a hurt knee. Then, after the race, I tell myself I will relax and rehab. But what happens? After the race, I find myself signed up for another one! So again, I manage the pain dealing with the effect of the injury instead of resting and facing the cause.
For some, running too much will also lead to exhaustion. If you’re new to running and begin a training program running 5-6 days per week exhaustion is a guarantee. That’s if an injury doesn’t take you out first.
So, avoid injury and exhaustion by focusing on RECOVERY. Rest and recovery are essential for your growth.
When we run, we break down, adapt, and grow back stronger. But this growth does not occur during the actual act of running; it happens when we are resting. We grow when we recover. So without rest, there is no growth. That’s why it’s essential to rest more and run less! So run your heart out, take adequate time off, and get right back to your next long run. With a recharged pair of legs and a clear mind, you will be ready to run farther than ever before!
2) Continuously Improve Your Technique
Running is controlled falling. Leaning forwards or backward is like a gas pedal of a car. The farther you lean forward, the faster you fall, the faster you run.
When you shift the dynamics of your run through proper form, it increases running efficiency. By running with higher efficiency you run farther with less energy.
Also, if good technique helps move you forward, bad technique will hold you back. Improper technique not only slows you down but it creates overuse injuries as well. Sure heal striking may not affect you for 5 miles, but how will this irritation affect you after 20 miles? Or 50 miles?
When it comes to technique, most of us rarely take the time to learn what we are doing wrong. I’m guilty of this myself. I waited until I developed an overuse injury before I began working on better form. When we become stubborn and use force instead of our head, we set ourselves up for disaster.
When thinking of forcing a run, it reminds me of the fly and the window. Have you ever seen a fly try to exit a house through a closed window? It flies as fast as it can right into the window. The fly gets up with more force and more determination and smacks right back into the same window. Over and over again, flying into the window never exiting the house. Failed attempt after failed attempt without ever once changing its approach. But if the fly would only move over three feet to the left it would effortlessly pass right through the open door.
The point is when we take a step back, look at the big picture, and change our technique; we can become a better runner instead of a dead fly on a windowsill.
3) Diet Is Everything
If you’ve read any of my writing, you know how much I believe in an all-natural lifestyle. Your body doesn’t have the ability to turn poor nutritional choices into ones of higher quality. Our cells, muscles, skin, and bones are built by the food that we supply it. We literally are what we eat.
So if you eat a sticky bun then guess what? You feel like a sticky bun. But if you eat a supercharged high-alkalized power veggie shake then that’s how you feel!
Remember, our bodies regenerate and grow. For example, our stomach completely renews itself every 2-3 days. Our eye cells take only 2 days to regenerate completely. Our liver cells renew completely every 6-7 weeks!
Wouldn’t it be great if our running shoes could do the same?
So the body you’re in now is not the same body you were in only a few years ago. This is your 2018 model.
Cells are the basic building blocks of all living things. The human body is made up of trillions of cells. Our cells provide structure for the body. They take in nutrients from food and convert those nutrients into energy. Energy to live and…energy to run!
4) Drink More Water
If there are solutions to our problems hidden anywhere in this world, it’s somewhere in the water.
Our body is made up of 68% water. This statistic alone should prove how vital water is for us. If cells provide us life and energy, and they need water to survive, doesn’t it only make sense to drink more water?
Research shows us that only 2% dehydration will decrease our energy levels.
Also, to be fully hydrated we should drink half of our body weight in ounces. So if you weigh 150 lbs, then it’s recommended to drink 75 ounces of water a day. If you are drinking anything less than drinking more water will provide you with more energy.
So make a swift increase in your water consumption and watch your miles increase when you run!
5) To Run Longer Practice Long Running
The principle of specificity implies that exercising a specific body part primarily develops that part. So if you run, then your running muscles will become stronger. With strong running muscles, you will be able to run further.
To become a better runner who runs long, you should do just that, run long. People who lay bricks will get better at laying bricks by laying brick. This same concept goes for runners as well. Runners will get better at running long distance by running long distance. If you want to become better at the long run then practice running long!
A swimmer should train by swimming, a cyclist should train by cycling, and a runner should train by running. That’s why you should consider giving up any exercises that put too much stress on your legs during training. Go the gym to work out your upper body, primarily exercises that engage the core. Try to avoid any heavy weight training with your legs.
Allow your legs time to grow back stronger and return to running on your next long run built like a long runner.
6) Move Way More
So let me guess, your day goes something like this: You wake up and SIT down on the edge of your bed. You go downstairs and SIT down for breakfast. You SIT on the drive to work and SIT at your desk all morning. You SIT down for lunch, SIT the rest of the afternoon at work, and SIT on the way home. You SIT and eat dinner, SIT and watch TV, SIT scrolling through social media, and SIT with your kids. You may SIT at the computer, or SIT and do work, or SIT and do some planning.
Then when it’s time for a run you say, “I’m tired… I don’t feel like going for a run.”
That’s because you need to move!!!!!
Movement creates more movement. Movement creates energy. Movement creates life!
People who don’t move aren’t people at all. They are rocks!
Are you a rock?
No, so get up and move! Take the steps, go for walks, and stand up more. Get up and have a random midday dance party! Focus on moving every bone of your body as much as possible through your day.
You know why I always get the best parking spot? It’s because I park in the back and walk. Small healthy habits add up and compound into a better quality of life.
If you’re tired, don’t reach for the sugar, reach for the sky! Get up and jump! Once you gain some momentum, keep it going, and then, go home! Your kids or significant other will think you went crazy!
Now, when you go for your run the pump is already primed, and you will soar through those miles. You will zip through your training program with a smile on your face ready to race.
Then once you cross the finish line….go ahead and sit down!
7) Know EXACTLY What You Want
I stress the importance of clarity A LOT. You must know EXACTLY what you want to achieve your goals.
Most people have goals like I want to run faster, or I want to run farther, or I want to lose weight. But know this: broad goals will deliver broad results whereas specific goals will deliver specific results.
If you ‘sort of’ run then you will be just that, ‘sort of‘ a runner. But if you establish yourself as a runner and know the EXACT distance you wish to run, you instantly become a better runner. When you sign up for the race, you make your goal concrete. With a specific goal, you will begin to attract the right circumstance to get you across the finish line. With a specific goal you now have the power of visualization in your corner.
Visualization is a powerful skill set to have. When you picture yourself crossing the finish line over and over again, it can have powerful effects. There’s a system in our bodies called the ‘reticular activating system’ which helps our brains decide exactly what it should be focusing on. For example, ever decide you want a particular car then start seeing it everywhere you go? That’s your RAS at work. When you have a purpose and focus solely on achieving your goal with complete certainty, you will influence the RAS system, and you will begin to pay special attention to the things that will help you achieve it. So visualize the finish line, see it, and watch it happen.
Maybe that’s why you’ve stumbled upon this website. Maybe it was time for a new perspective and time to take action. Maybe it was to find my book below. If that’s the case be sure to take action and grab a copy. It’s called The Ultramarathon Guide: A Simple Approach To Running Your First Ultra Marathon. It’s designed to finish in one sitting so you can take immediate action and start training TODAY.
So is instant improvement possible to become a better runner? Sure it is! When you change your perspective, you instantly become the person who can achieve your running goals.
Now that you have some new perspectives it’s time to lace up those shoes as a new runner, that is, a new runner who will not just listen to others, but a new runner who will listen to their self.
Know your potential is limitless! The right words for the right person can create a paradigm shift that unleashes that potential which drives you to the finish line. If this information is new to you, great! If you doubt any of it, even better! We don’t learn from KNOWING we learn from DOUBT. With doubt, we dig deep into the new information to prove ourselves right or wrong. But most importantly, we take ACTION to find out. We take action to learn more and to apply new tips to our running, instantly becoming a better runner!
REMEMBER…sometimes looking through a new lens is all you need to have a breakthrough in your running.
Ready to take immediate action? If so click the image below and grab a copy of my new book! Learn how to run ANY distance by running only ONE day per week. You will receive training plans for the 5k, 10k, half-marathon, marathon, 50k, 50-mile, 100k, and 100-mile distances. Ebook version available here.
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