10 Long Distance Running Tips
Looking for 10 long distance running tips to make sure you do it right? After deciding to run long distances, you need to make sure you stay healthy. Follow these guidelines and you will be able to log hundreds of miles.
- Keep a log. Grab a simple notebook and write down how long you go on each run. Some distance runners also track their food choices and gear to see what works best for their long distance runs.
- Trim your toenails. Pay attention to your toes. Many runners view black toes as a badge of honor. If you still want to wear sandals after running long distances, trim your nails once a week straight across to avoid ingrown nails and black toes.
- Choose good shoes. Make sure you have a good pair of shoes that are designed for long distance running. They don’t need to be the most expensive shoes out there, but they need to provide good support. Go to a running store and have someone analyze your gait to make sure you get a good fit.
- Get good socks. Your socks need to wick away moisture to keep your feet happy. The fewer seams, the better. After a long distance run, seams cause blisters from repetitive rubbing.
- Choose some shorts. Length is a personal choice. Try out different brands until you find a good fit. Most modern shorts have a built-in liner, so there’s no need to wear underwear.
- Wear a watch. There are hundreds of sports watches on the market. For long distance running, you need a watch that is water resistant and has a stopwatch feature. It should be able to track hours, minutes and seconds. Look for buttons that are easy to find when you’re working hard, but not too easy to hit by accident.
- Bring some music. Listening to music can get you going and help you finish that long distance run. Make sure the volume is low enough that you can still hear what’s going on in the world around you.
- Practice good nutrition. In the 1980s, runners focused on “carbo loading” before long distance races. With advances in nutrition, distance runners now focus on eating complex carbs with a bit of protein before they run. After finishing a long distance run, your muscles have tons of microscopic tears. Eating lean protein following a long run helps to rebuild those muscles. When you're running for more than an hour, you will need to replenish yourself during your run with one of the numerous supplements available.
- Take ice baths. A little soreness after a long distance run is normal. To reduce the pain and recover faster, you can hop into a pool or take an ice bath. Just fill your tub with ice and then get in. The coolness reduces inflammation and pain.
- Get some rest. The key to successfully running long distances is scheduling active rest. If you run long distances seven days a week, eventually you will get injured. Schedule at least one down day. Instead of running, try swimming or yoga, or bike riding. Cross training gives your muscles a chance to recover.
Although it is a solitary sport, long distance running is a great way to burn calories and get in shape. Now that you know the basics, get out there and sweat!