Here’s the thing about race training: You want to run enough miles to physically prepare your body, but you also want to run as few miles as possible so you don’t overtax your body. But when training programs call for up to 200 miles of running before race day, it’s hard to know exactly where to draw that line.
How many miles should you run a day? A week? The answer really depends on your speed, your strength, and your experience—so there’s no one-size-fits-all mileage prescription. “Look at where you are right now,” says Melanie Kann, an RRCA-certified running coach for New York Road Runners.
“If you’re running your first-ever 5K, you might start with a 5-mile-per-week program. If you’re running your first marathon, you might start with a 15-mile-per-week training plan.” Larger race distances require more of a base to start with (at least four months of consistent running, she recommends), but no matter what your end goal, you have to start with what you’re currently capable of doing versus what you want to be doing.
And, really, it’s less about blanket mileage goals and more about time on your feet, says Rich Velazquez, a running coach and chief operations officer at Mile High Run Club in New York City. “This allows the runner to progress safely, running/jogging/walking to their ability, yet still see cardiovascular benefits,” he says. “Ideally, in your longest training runs, you want to be on your feet for the amount of time you project it will take to finish your race. Your body is not a pedometer—it can’t measure miles, but it will quickly identify time and impact.”
If you’re not training for a race, just jogging five or six miles per week could put you at less risk for obesity, high blood pressure, cholesterol issues, diabetes, strokes, certain cancers, and arthritis, according to a review of studies analyzing over 500 runners. So “a great starting point for a beginner is running 20 minutes—the minimum amount of time needed to achieve cardiovascular benefits—three times a week,” says Velazquez.
If you are training, the following six rules can help you figure out just how far you need to go.
[Run faster, stronger, and longer with the complete cross training program for runners.]
Rule 1: The longer the race, the higher the mileage.Duh, right? If you’re training for a marathon, you’re obviously going to need to log more weekly miles than if you’re training for a 5K. No matter the race distance, though, there are three main components to a cohesive running program, says Velazquez: a long run day, a speed day, and a recovery day. “Your long run should be conducted at a slow pace and eventually last as long as your projected race time (remember, it’s about time on feet versus miles); your speed day is shorter in duration but faster than your predicted race pace; and your recovery day should be an easy/slow pace and lower mileage than your planned race,” he says. So you’ll have some longer runs and some shorter runs no matter what you’re training for; the ultimate mileage, of course, depends on your race distance.
Rule 2: Mileage requirements increase as performance goals increase.If your goal is simply to finish a race, you can run fewer miles than if your goal is to finish with a fast time. “But as your goals shift towards performance, weekly mileage will most likely increase to support the demands of these goals: aerobic capability, energy utilization and sustainability over elongated periods of time, and efficiency of movement,” says Velazquez.
That’s because logging that time on your feet is what’s going to give you a stronger engine, adds Kann. “Obviously, your musculoskeletal system is going to get stronger as you spend more time on your feet,” she says. “But when you’re out there running, you’re fueled by oxygen—that’s what gets your muscles to fire and gets the blood moving around. So the more time you spend on your feet, the more it’s going to increase the capacity of your aerobic engine, which is going to fuel you to go stronger for longer.”
Rule 3: Not all miles are created equally.No runner should go out and run the same pace every day; any good training plan should include speed, interval, tempo, and distance training, all of which offer different benefits. “Speed training is where the body will shape and improve its running economy (energy demand for a given speed) thus improving overall efficiency in energy consumption and oxygen utilization,” says Velazquez. “Interval training aligns specific speeds with specific intervals and set rest periods, tempo running is about maintaining consistent speeds over longer periods of time, and distance training is about getting the body used to impact and elongated performance.”
The point of all those different training modalities? Ideally, you become a better, more well-rounded runner. “If you only run at race pace, that’s the only pace you know,” says Kaan. “You want to get your system ready to be comfortable moving at paces faster than race pace, so that when you get to race day, that pace doesn't feel so hard.” While the bulk of your miles should be easy, aerobic-based miles, those faster miles get you to that point where you're clearing away the waste product in your muscles at the same rate that you're accumulating it, she explains, which will make your body more efficient come race day.
Rule 4: Allow for adaptation when increasing mileage.To avoid injury when upping your mileage, you need to take it slow and allow your body time to adapt to the increased workload. Many runners follow the 10 percent rule—i.e. never increasing your weekly mileage by more than 10 percent over the previous week. “Most programs will build mileage week over week for about three weeks before introducing in a low mileage week (recovery),” Velasquez says. “From there, the buildup will start again as the body should have adapted from the increased volume with the rest and be ready and able to tackle more.”
Think about your runs in terms of quality over quantity, Kaan says. “If you're adding additional speed workouts to your week, you don’t want to run a super long run that weekend,” she says. “You're just asking a lot of your body all in a short period of time.” Your body, on a microscopic level, is breaking down muscle tissue when you run, and it needs to time to rebuild (that’s how you get stronger). It’s important to look at the whole picture when it comes to weekly mileage, and think about the kind of miles you’re running and how that will impact your body.
Rule 5: Listen to your body.When you’re following a training plan, it’s natural to want to hit the exact mileage that’s indicated—that’s how it works, right? “We always tell people to start with a plan, but that plan is not the letter of the law,” says Kann. “It's not like you're going to get a failing grade if you don't stick to that plan 100 percent.” Running mileage just for the sake of running mileage can actually backfire, because overtraining can lead to a general disintegration of performance or even injury. “Broken sleep, elevated resting heart rate, lack of motivation and restlessness are all signs of overtraining,” says Velasquez.
With running comes a certain level of discomfort; part of the challenge is pushing yourself past those I-don’t-know-if-I-can-do-this boundaries.
But Kaan doesn't advocate running through pain. “Discomfort naturally comes with training as your body adapts, but if you feel the pain on one side of your body and not on the other or if you’re dealing with some kind of persistent pain, that's a sign that there's some kind of imbalance at play,” she says. When in doubt, err on the side of caution and pull back your pace or take a rest day. No runner ever healed any kind of pain or injury by running more.
Rule 6: A healthy runner beats an injured runner every time.
At the end of the day, the most important goal of any runner—whether you’re running a marathon, half marathon, 10K, or 5K—is to make it to the starting line. “The last thing you want is to overload yourself, break yourself down, and then push yourself past your limits,” says Kaan.
“That’s when you're gonna pull yourself out of the game for three weeks to recover. Then you're really in trouble.”
“If you’re not feeling up to run, rest and reschedule,” says Velazquez. “And should that feeling persist, people training for longer races (i.e. a marathon) should give priority to the long run over the speed training.” Remember: No one’s grading you on how well you stick to a mass-produced plan anyone on the Internet can download. The real test is race day, and just how well you can get through it.
Target Totals:So exactly how many more miles does a marathoner need to log per week than a 10K or 5K runner? Here are some suggested weekly totals by event for elites versus the rest of us:
BY MEGAN HETZEL MAR 13, 2013
Source - runnersworld.com
Welcome to our first Social Studies post! In this column, we'll share the latest trends, conversations, viral photos, video, and more, all pulled from our social media platforms on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Our first post comes from Facebook: To spark some early-morning running conversations among our fans, we like to post questions to our wall on weekdays. Last month, we asked:
If you could give one piece of advice to a newbie runner, what would it be?
In a matter of hours, the post received nearly 2,000 responses that included everything from uplifting words of wisdom to advice about gear and training. We pulled your best responses and paired them with Runner’s World articles to make the ultimate newbie runner tip sheet:
Our event is powered by 100% Volunteer manpower!! From the Race director, to the marketing and everything in between
Sponsorship's help us to offset the race costs, which allow us to donate all of the proceeds to the American Cancer Society Through The Relay For Life!
We still have sponsorship opportunities available, and would LOVE your support!
If you are part of an organization that loves to give back to the community, than this is a perfect fit for you! You can find the details at https://www.purplerun.net/sponsorships.html
You can even download the sponsorship form to get started! Please email our race director at firstname.lastname@example.org
It is time for the Plus 1 Challenge!
Every year, we try to beat the previous year's accomplishments because this is how we improve ourselves, as we strive to complete our mission of funding a cure for cancer!
SO, this year we are forwarding this challenge to you! Starting now, until the end of January, we are asking everyone to invite at least 1 more person to join us in the Purple Run And Walk For A Cure!
There are over 700 people registered as of this time, that have participated in this event over the years.
If every one of you invite just one more to join us, along with yourself, we would grow to more than 1400 people!! All coming together to walk and run in this amazing event on April 28th!!
Should that happen, we would raise more than $35,000 towards the fight against cancer!
So let's get busy! The registration fee goes up soon!! Let's see how many we can get registered by the end of January before the rates go up!
We are also looking for more Volunteers to cover the expanded routes on the 5K, 10K AND Half Marathon routes! Please invite other members of your family and friends to volunteer at www.purplerun.net !!
Purple Run For A Cure
7th Annual Purple Run/Walk
Florence, MA, US
7 Ways to Have More Enjoyable Winter Long Runs
Wear the right gear.Invest in some key pieces—a running jacket, water resistant gloves, a warm hat and a decent pair of running tights. Bonus points if they're reflective! There's a ton of great stuff on the market these days, and the right gear will make your miles so much more comfortable. It's also good practice dressing for running as though it's a bit warmer than it actually is. For example, if it's 32 degrees, dress as you would for an easy walk on a 50-degree day. It may not seem like it at first, but your body will warm up as you exercise.
Start your run against the wind.Wind is one of the toughest things about winter running; it can chill you to the core and make the temperature feel much lower. Check out the weather report and then start an out-and-back run facing into the wind. When you turn around (and are sweaty) the wind will be at your back, and the second half will feel much easier.
Break a sweat before you begin.Warm up by doing some dynamic stretches (try lunges or burpees), a few jumping jacks or running a couple flights of stairs. If your body is already warm, heading out into the cold won't feel quite as bad. If you really need a boost, toss your running gear into a warm dryer for a few minutes.
Find a running BFF.Join a local running club or recruit a friend to train with you during winter's dark, cold days. It's always going to be tough to get out of a warm bed in the morning, but if you know you have someone waiting for you, it'll be harder to bail. No running buddies in the neighborhood? Try joining an online running community or DMing with your favorite Instagram runners to build some accountability.
Adjust your running schedule if possible.Running around noon will allow you to enjoy the day's warmest temperatures and avoid darkness. Try aligning your training schedule to include long runs on days off from work so you can head out midday instead of early morning or evening.
Have a post-run action plan.There's nothing worse than finishing a run and then sitting in cold sweat on your drive (or subway ride) back home. To keep your body temperature from dropping too rapidly, change into warm, dry clothes as soon as possible. If you won't be able to shower for a while, throw on a dry hat and sweatshirt or at the very least treat yourself to a hot beverage.
If conditions are bad, head inside to a treadmill or indoor track.Wondering where to find inside options? Check out your local college campus to see if they allow community members to use the facilities. Even if you prefer logging miles outside, an occasional run on the treadmill or track can be a nice break. Queue up your favorite podcast, audio book or playlist to help pass the time. Overwhelmed by a super long run indoors? Break it up in chunks—if you're at the gym, try running five miles on three separate treadmills. Or if the weather isn't too bad, try doing half of your run outside, then strip down to shorts and finish up inside.
READ THIS NEXT: What Happens to Your Body During a Winter Run
Walk - Walker
in 37 days $30.00
Running-5K - 5k
in 37 days $30.00
Running-10K - 10k
in 37 days $30.00
Running-Half marathon - Individual Age group/open
in 37 days $30.00
REGISTER NOWAbout This ActivityThis will be our Seventh Annual Purple Run/Walk For a Cure! This event has been such an inspiration for all who participate as everyone is not only walking and running, but fighting cancer at the same time! If you have any questions, you can contact us at email@example.com or by phone at 413-313-2525
This event will be taking place in Look Park, located in beautiful Florence, MA and will be a real nice run and walk. This year, including a half-marathon route! The route can be found at our main website, www.purplerun.net
Purple Run check-in on the day of the event will take place starting at 9:00am at Look Park. The Run will start promptly at 10:00am for both the runners AND walkers.
There will be a vendor/craft fair on site to help us raise even more money for the effort before, during and after the race, so please bring extra cash... We are also going to have food trucks there to help feed you after the race!
Keep checking the web site for more details as they become available, AND you can also sign up for our newsletter on our website.
Event details and schedule
Registration and Check-In will start at 9AM at Look Park. The Run/Walk will start promptly at 10AM!
Any updates will be published at www.purplerun.net
We will have all times available and the winners announced, trophies awarded by 1pm.
There will be several drawings, a 50/50 drawing as well as a giveaway after the race.
We are always looking for great sponsors to help us put this event on every year.
As of 5 am this morning, (January 3rd) we had 18 more participants register for the 7th Annual Purple Run! Who's next???
Let's commit to, not only the Run, but getting healthier in this calendar year. Let's commit to helping to find a cure!
Let's add the focus of Children's cancer to our cause! (more details coming soon)