I have to admit that I am an aging runner. I am 41 and soon to be 42. Clearly my best days are behind... WAY BEHIND... me.
That is OK and I have come to terms with that.
It doesn't mean that I can't continue to enjoy running and enjoy competing. For me the focus of my competitive fire has shifted A LOT (Read my other blog "No Excuses" to see what my focus now is) but I still run and still identify myself as a runner.
Today's blog is going to focus on YOU and how to keep yourself going though your 30's, 40's, 50's and beyond. The tips that I give you will help you. This is a promise!
First, a little about my background as a runner.
I ran my first 5 mile road race in 1982. I know. 32 years ago. I was 9 years old. I loved running as a kid and kept it up for a long, long time.
I competed as a distance runner in high school and college. I set some pretty fast time along the way. These times include 1:56 for 1/8 mile, 4:16 for a mile and 25:45 for 5 miles. Back in the day I also ran 9:16 for 2 miles and a 1:14:59 half marathon.
Those days are gone now. I am not that person anymore. As a matter of fact all those times (except the half marathon) we run in the 1990's. Yeah...decades ago.
This leads me right into the first tip.
Tip #1: Leave the past in the past. You are NEVER going to be the person you were 20 years ago again so why try? Many of us try to train and race like we are 21 when we are 41. This is a recipe for failure. Set new goals that have NOTHING to do with your old goals. Find a focus that is reachable, measurable and challenge. Running your best ever 5k at 40 when your personal best is from 1996 is dumb. I ran 15:22 is 1996. Do you think I am trying to run that now? Goals are different now. WAY different.
Tip #2: Don't be afraid to run fast and run on soft surfaces. One of the things that has kept me injury free for the most part over the years in my love for trail running. Go to the track and run 400m intervals once a week. Remember tip #1! Don't expect to run sub 60. Just run a little faster then your normal pace.
Also, get your butt out on the trails for AT LEAST 50% of your mileage. If you are afraid to "get hurt" well then you are the exact opposite of correct. You need the lower leg strengthening that you will get from the trials. If you don't feel comfortable "running" on the trails then do some walk/jogging to get you used to it.
Tip #3: Do functional fitness. Focus on exercises that stretch your glutes, build your core and strengthen your back. 4 exercises that I would recommend are....
1) LOW PLANK:
2) DEEP BODY WEIGHT SQUATS:
TIP #4: Be consistence with your running and with your rest. As we age we need more rest and recovery. This is truth. We also need to be consistent with our training. There is a balance and you need to find it.
Is it smart to run 60 miles a week in our 40's like we did in our 20's. I would say no. Is it smart to run 2-3 days per week and expect to do well in a half marathon? I would say no to this as well.
You need to be smart and figure out how much your body needs without overdoing it AND you need to know how much is to much. It is a challenge but you can do it. If you do all the tips that I suggest here then it should help you to understand the balance.
TIP #5: You MUST supplement. Even if your just do an Omega and high qualify multi-vitamin. I recommend Advocare because it is the best. I also recommend being consistent. Do you think it is a good idea to put 5 different brand of supplement in your body?
It is not.
Some people might say, "I don't do supplements." Coffee, energy drinks, Gatorade, bars, gels, Vitamin C, etc. These are supplements. You can replace all that will one brand. Like I said Advocare is what we use.
If you are interested to learn more specifically what I recommend for runners then watch this short video that I did a while back:
You can also check the Advocare site for more details: www.advocare.com.
As we age our bodies no longer can absorb nutritional the way that it did when we were younger. This is part of why supplementation is ESSENTIAL. On top of that we have more stress, less time and we tend to get hurt. We get the proper nutrition to recover. Again, supplementation is essential.
If you want a FREE consultation to learn what is right for you are far as supplementation going then simple call my personal cell: 352-989-6795. You can email me your phone number as well with a good time to call.
I will try to help you.
So there are my 5 tips for aging runners. If you got value please share with your runner friends. You never know who might need this information!
To your success!
Rick Copley, Your Best Fitness Coach
"Empowering YOU to be a champion"