Train for a marathon

Street Marathon, Running, Competitors

All of us know that cardio activities, such as running, are fantastic for your health. If you’re new to running, or thinking about starting, knowing where and how to start can be the most challenging aspects of getting up and moving. The best thing to do is to set a target and then put together a running plan.

A great starting goal for beginning runners is a 5K race, which is equal to 3.1 miles. Even in case you don’t currently run at all, it can take as little as 6 months to train for these races. So, set your sites on a goal, and then follow this simple, 6-week training plan.

Week 1

Workout

This first week you simply want to set your sites on getting off the couch and getting moving. Start simply by choosing four days to jog, or walk, 0.5 miles. If you decide to walk, do so at as fast a rate as you’re comfortable with.

Strength-Building

You also need to plan to perform two days of light strength-building. Strength-building is very important when training for a race as it builds the muscles needed for continual running. The weight of your own body or, light, free weights, will be more than enough.

Diet

During this first week it is a good idea to also start adding healthy foods to your diet, which will give you energy as you run. Avoid heavy and greasy foods that can cause you to feel tired and drain your energy. Foods, like fruits, nuts, and vegetables are great for high nutrition energy.

Week 2

Workout

Now that you have made it through your first week, up your mileage to 1 mile, three or four times this week. Try to run the entire way if you’re able to, even if it’s at a really slow pace.

Strength-Building

Continue to strength-build twice this week. Yoga is a great strength building activity because it’s a total body workout that many overlook. It’s also a great workout for runners, because it stretches the muscles out that normally get tight, as you build your running distance.

Diet

Continue to incorporate healthy foods into your diet. You may also notice an increase in hunger as you work out more. Definitely eat when you’re hungry, but keep in mind that running one mile just burns 100 calories, so snack wisely.

Week 3

Workout

Add another half mile to your run. You are up to 1.5 miles now!

Strength-Building

Continue to strength-build twice per week. You might choose to add core exercises, such as planking, or sit-ups.

Diet

Continue to incorporate healthy foods to your diet. Make sure to drink plenty of water before and after you exercise.

Week 4

Workout

Only three short weeks ago you could not run at all. You can now boost your mileage to two miles, three times per week.

Strength-Building

Continue to strength-build twice per week. Try to plank for 45 seconds.

Diet

Think about producing good tasting post-workout smoothies. All you need is frozen fruit, a liquid, like fruit juice, or milk, and your good to go. Also consider adding greens into your smoothie, like spinach, or kale – they are jam-packed with anti-oxidants.

Week 5

Workout

Almost there! Boost your mileage up to 2.5 miles this week. Now that you’re going longer distances make certain to stretch very well before, and after, each exercise.

Strength-Building

Continue to strength-build twice a week. Attempt to plank for 60 seconds. Squats are excellent for strengthening the running muscles in your legs.

Diet

Try to replace them by drinking all-natural coconut water, which is high in potassium. Potassium is an essential electrolyte for runners.

Week 6

Workout

Now you’re ready for the last leg of your practice. You are up to 3 miles this week! Try to run 3 times this week, giving yourself a rest day and two strength-building days. The day before you run the 5K, it’s a fantastic idea to take a short run, say 1 mile, merely to maintain your muscles warmed up.

Strength-Building

You don’t need to be sore on the day of the race.

Diet

Continue to eat healthful foods. You don’t want to have to manage an upset stomach on race day.

Week 6+

Hopefully, after completing your 6 weeks of training, you feel great, both indoors and out. Running could truly be transformative. Don’t stop at 5K. Or, if you are feeling more ambitious, you may set your goals higher and start to train for a 10K (6.2 miles) and, possibly even a Half Marathon (13.1 miles). Just continue to improve your mileage and focus on your runner’s diet and you’ll reach your next goal very quickly!

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