Running is a simple democratic sport.To start, you need very little by way of equipment. You don't need an opponent or a team. You don't even need specific skills for taking up jogging as a first step to Half marathon running.

It all depends on what you want to get out of your running. Approach it in the right way and you will not only have fun, but running will increase your general well-being, will tone your body, give you a healthier complexion and a sunnier outlook to life. Above all, ask experts and novices and all in unison will agree that these benefits pale against the entirely intangible high one gets from finishing a half marathon!

You have probably met an individual experiencing post half marathon euphoria. They're the ones who can't walk without a frown due to extreme exertion, but are nevertheless wrapped in a great feeling of achievement, which comes from having dared and succeeded. The achievement makes one feel different inside, think differently and more positively about one's self.

So while there's plenty of magic about the half marathon event, there's no special secret about the people who run half marathons. They are you and me.

The first step your mind is perhaps more important than you realize at this stage.

All runners new or old, fast or slow, have the same decision to make again and again - Get up, and get out there on the road. Many a times a nagging voice in the mind keeps saying, "Let's have a rest day today, it won't matter."

The toughest step is to take the 'first' step.

it shows flexibility The sole of the shoe should be wide enough to support the foot. you are less likely to skip the run! RUNNING GEAR Running shoes you need firm cushioning to protect your feet and the rest of your body from the damaging impact of running on the road. RUNNING WITH YOUR BUDDY It's fun to run together. make sure to wear the socks you will be wearing while running. And importantly. or if you have not exercised for a long time or if you have weight or blood pressure problems.that's called getting the right 'fit. Running buddies support and help each other to keep going.running shoes. soft inner of the shoe and padded tongue. Look for a comfortable fit. The shoe should not be stiff: you should be able to bend it at the centre . There is no such thing as a single 'best buy. Buy late in the afternoon when your feet are slightly swollen from the day's activities. Look for a padded arch support. when you know someone is waiting for you. Get good cushioning at the heel. ask for medical advice.' Ask for road training . .' There are many models of shoes for the simple reason that "no two pairs of feet are the same".BEFORE YOU RUN (A MEDICAL ADVICE) if you have any lingering doubts about your health.' Selecting your running shoes • • • • • • • • While trying your shoes on. Make sure there is 'arch support. Walk and jog in the shop in a number of shoes to get the feel of them in action. There is the shape of your foot to consider . so your toes can wriggle inside. There should be one finger-space (about half inch) between your big toe and the shoe.

Loosening exercises: • • • • • • Arms: With your feet astride. bend forward and touch your toes.you might pull a muscle. move your neck and head in the same direction. Sports bras for women are advisable. then lean forward. Better to avoid pure nylon. Do not jerk . WARMING UP The warm-up is important as cold muscles are more easily damaged. Pants: Cotton pants are more absorbent and tights are good too. Keep your body upright. bend forward and hold your toes. . raise your left leg and place the heel on the table. A collarless shirt is less restrictive. Do this three to four times. lean deep to the left. going down as much as possible. Nor should it be too thick as it is hot and humid in India. Shorts: Best are cotton/nylon mixtures or dry-fit. Special socks with extra cushioning are also available. Side bending: With your feet astride and hands resting on your hips. swing both arms forward. then ease your back upwards and repeat a few times. Hold your left ankle in your left hand and pull it up towards your butt until you feel the stretch on the front of your thighs. Repeat the same on the left leg. Make sure you are able to raise one leg so that the thigh is parallel to the floor below. point your toes up.'you are readying for your run'. hold for a while. raise your arms above your head and move them in a circular fashion away from the body. Do this about two to three times. Quadricep stretches: Stand on your right leg. then return to the upright position and repeat on the other side. then in reverse direction a few times. Stretch your calf muscles: Take your right leg in front of you. Ham string stretches: Stand facing a table or a parapet (or something you can raise or rest your leg on). Repeat with the left leg. dry-fits or cottons are best. and repeat the same on the other leg. It helps prepare your mind to give the right signals to your body . Forward bending: With your feet together. Do not bend the knee. Socks: Cotton or dry-fit socks are better for sweat absorption.CLOTHING: • • • • • T-shirts or running vests: make sure they are not too tight at the neck and under the armpits. Then swing your arms sideways together.

Limber down . Easy Run Rest/ Exercises Weeks DAY 1 DAY 3 5km .Easy/ Relaxed Run Rest/ Exercises 7km . 5 x 800 mts repeat 6km (quite fast) Rest/ Easy/ with 400mts Exercises Relaxed walk/jogg/rest Run in between.Easy Run. Exercises Relaxed Cooldown/ Run Limberdown1km Warm up1km. Should be able to Week 1 stetching & talk while Abdominal running.6 x 75 5km mts incline.Easy/ Relaxed Run Rest/ Exercises Warm up 1km.8 x 75 5km mts (walk Rest/ Easy/ down).Easy Run DAY 4 DAY 5 DAY 6 DAY 7 Rest 7km.Fast/ Steady Run 8km 5km Rest/ Easy/ Easy/ Rest Exercises Relax Relaxation Run Week 3 9km . Up Hill Run . exercises Week 2 9km. up hill Exercises Easy Run 9km Easy Rest Run 11km Easy/ Rest Relaxed Run 12km Rest Easy 14km . Up Hill Run. Rest/ Easy/ walk down. Easy Easy Exercises Run Run 5km . Exercises Relaxed Cooldown/ Run Limberdown1km Warm up1km.2km Warm upRest/ 5km 1km.Easy Run Rest/ Exercises Week 6 9km .Half Marathon Programme .Easy / Week 4 Relaxed Run Rest/ Exercises Week 5 9km . loosening. Do 7km .Rest Easy .21km By Savio D'Souza DAY 2 Rest. Rest/ 4km.

Limberdown 2km Rest RACE Disclaimer : You are advised to consult your physician prior to undertaking the above mentioned training programme. 5km Rest/ 5km Rest/ Exercises Quite fast.Weeks DAY 1 Week 7 8km . 10 x 300mtsRepeats with 5km 100mts walk/ Easy Rest/ Rest/ Exercises Jogg in Long Exercise between.Quite 5km Rest fast Easy Run DAY 2 DAY 6 DAY 7 Long Run 16km Easy Rest Long Run Week 8 8km .Easy/ Relaxed Run Week 7km . 8 to 10 strides (quite Rest/ 7km Rest/ Exercises fast. . Run Cooldown/ Limberdown 2km 6km .Easy/ Relaxed Run DAY 3 DAY 4 DAY 5 run (repeats) 10 x 75mts hill (walk down). Exercises Easy Run Cooldown 1km Warm up1km.Easy Run Rest/ Exercises 16 17km Easy/ Rest Relaxed Long Run 13km Easy Rest Run Week 9 8km .Easy/ 10 Relaxed Run Warm up 1km. Cooldown/ Limberdown 2km Warm up1km. repeats) Exercises Easy Run of 120mts.

salads. Keep hydrated. If you are training vigorously. Feed your muscles. 4. pasta.1. They not only provide carbohydrates. They need energy to work. Decrease or eliminate junk food. . Carbohydrates are your best source of glycogen. vitamins and minerals. excess fat and sodium. Drink eight glasses of water per day. 2. Check with a professional trainer or nutritionist to assess whether you need extra protein. extra protein may be worth considering. It supplies empty calories. Choose healthy sources of carbohydrates. Eat fruits. even for professional athletes. 5. The added amount is usually small. 3. sugar and food additives. and make sure to keep drinking while exercising. but are packed with fibres. Eat 5 to 6 grams of carbohydrates per kilogram of body weight To supply adequate glycogen to muscles. and their main energy source is glycogen. cereals and whole-grain breads. 6.

The recommended amount is no more than 30 percent of your total intake of calories. Disclaimer: You are advised to consult your nutritionist who will advice you depending upon your health and medical condition prior to following a diet. As you are able to see your progress. Listed below are some specific goals setting tips: Be specific In order to stimulate your motivation. MOTIVATION TIPS: Tips and techniques to help you get motivated to run: Set Goals A great motivation technique is to set running goals for yourself so that you can monitor your progress on a weekly or monthly basis.7. The tips are purely of advisory nature. your enthusiasm for running will soar. 8. you need to be specific with your goal setting. Eat a healthy. Instead of saying you are going to set a personal best in a 10K road race. . Even if you are on a weight loss program. polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats are better for you than saturated. Make sure to get fat in your diet. well-balanced diet The USDA's (United States Department of Agriculture) Food Guide Pyramid suggests three to five servings of vegetables and two to four servings of fruit every day. set a goal to improve on your personal best by 15 seconds in the next six months.

Set a deadline Complacency and an attitude of "I'll work on that later" will set in if your deadline for achieving your goal is not defined. Record times. A training log allows you to monitor your progress and learn from your mistakes. Add a sense of urgency to your goal by adding a specific timeframe and watch your motivation skyrocket! Set realistic but difficult to obtain goals Your running goals should be achievable and challenging at the same time. Implement the Buddy System . it is also extremely important to frequently review your goals. you increase your motivation and your chances of success. Utilize a Training Log Keep a training log of each run. The final step is to get out there and work your plan. Remember. the more focused you are on your running goals the more likely you are to accomplish them. progress toward goals and any other statistic or aspect of your running you might find valuable. distances. Write and Review Your Goals Writing down your goals creates your roadmap to success. Many runners regularly review their training logs to look at the work they've done in the past to provide motivation for the future. Develop a Plan and Work It Develop a plan of action to achieve your running goals and then just do it! By taking the time to decide on the specific steps needed to achieve your goals. Although just the act of writing them down can set the process in motion. time of day. weather. An unrealistic goal will kill motivation but a goal that is too easily obtained will lead to boredom. your pulse rate.

If you are a morning runner. Examples include: posters. and new by setting some non-time related goals. makes time fly. switch to running in the evening and vice versa. challenging." Surround yourself with Reminders Sustained motivation is key to achieving your potential. biographies of successful runners. One way to keep your motivation high is to find out what fires you up. and provides mutual motivation on those days when you or your partner(s) just "don't feel like it. Being creative with your workout will add new life to your running. To avoid discouragement and possibly even quitting the sport. builds friendships. Run for the enjoyment of it without worrying about time goals. provides accountability. Place your "mental stimuli" where you can see it every day. Decide to complete a specific number of races a year or to complete a longer distance race. and videos. cultivate new running goals. Remember. running magazines. Challenge yourself by adding some speed or hill repeats to your workout. so he is. . All runners eventually reach the point where they aren't going to get any faster. Find some new running routes.Run with a compatible training partner or running group. photos. keep your running fresh. as a man thinks. Whatever you determine. running books. and then surround yourself with it. Change the time of day you normally run. Be Creative with your Workouts Doing the same workout day after day leads to boredom and burnout. quotes. Alter the distance you normally run. Finding others to run with. inspiring literature. you just won't be able to beat the clock any longer. Set Completion Goals. Alter your workout routine by incorporating some or all of the following: • • • • Leave your watch at home. Not Time Goals At some point.

Bottom line: Be good to yourself. and discuss your training. Many runners who have reached their goal treat themselves to some tangible reward: a new running shirt. Visit your closest Reebok store Stop by a running store on a regular basis to pick up a race application. give suggestions. They are thrilled to answer your questions. in-line roller skating. running accessory. There are many other activities. Mix in some cycling. When you do succeed. swimming. hiking. Your motivation to run will be lifted when you put yourself in an environment that supports your goals. local race. and aerobic conditioning. new running magazine.Do more than Run To add a boost of motivation. a sports watch. or weight training. other than running. The ideas are limited only by your imagination. cross-country skiing. or a special trip. Occasionally Enter a Race Want to increase your motivation and feel the adrenaline of competition? Enter an occasional fun. a meal at a nice restaurant. . make sure to do something nice for yourself. Running stores thrive on people who love to run. incorporate some cross training in your workout routine. or the latest running book. flexibility. that can increase your strength. The spill-over effect will keep you motivated for weeks afterward and may even spur you on to enter even more races! Reward yourself when you Succeed Rewards can be a powerful motivator.

you should follow the 10-Percent Rule when building up the length of your long runs as well. hill repeats. Building Miles Too Quickly Stick to the 10-Percent Rule. Jumping right back into your training program after missing several workouts greatly increases your risk of a running injury. cross-training) in between hard workouts allows your body to recover and rebuild while limiting your risk of suffering a running injury. Repeating Hard Workouts with No Easy Workouts in Between Do not run two hard workouts back-to-back. In addition.CAUSES OF INJURIES: Overuse The most common cause of running injuries is overuse. speed work and/or any other workout that overly stresses your body. The 10-Percent Rule states that you should never increase your weekly mileage by more than 10 percent over the previous week. Taking a one-day break (day of rest. Inconsistencies occur when you have missed several workouts in a row and then try to add on additional miles in subsequent workouts in order to catch up. too soon. Hard workouts include long runs. Inconsistent Training Another common training error occurs when you are inconsistent in your workout routine. Running on Uneven Surfaces . races. Overuse is described as doing too much. It hits both beginner runners as well as veterans who suddenly increase their training thinking that their experience and smarts will keep them from injury. Do 8 or 9 miles instead. Jumping straight from 7 miles to 11 miles is a mistake. and too fast.

Improper Shoe Type and Excess Shoe Mileage Running in tennis shoes or a shoe type (Motion-Controlled. thereby increasing your chance of suffering one or more running injuries. Ice. Cushioned) that is wrong for your feet will cause running injuries as well as running in shoes that have excess mileage (500 miles or more).Many roads have good running surfaces but are often crowned so that water will run off its center. and taking a day or two off of running to allow . avoid concrete (such as sidewalks) and look for asphalt. Running on packed dirt and/or grass. RUNNING INJURIES PREVENTION TIPS AND TECHNIQUES Run on Softer Surfaces Running injuries are minimized when you run on soft surfaces. Avoid Tight Turns Tight turns and indoor tracks are a common cause of running injuries. and Elevation) method to enhance recovery. Compression. this could mean using the RICE (Rest. Running on a slanted road will cause one foot to pronate (roll inward) and the other to supinate (roll outward). Look for running routes over the flattest roads available. however. Look for slow curves and straight paths. such as packed dirt and grass. immediately begin preventative measures in order to keep damage to a minimum and to speed your full recovery. In that case. taking anti-inflammatory medication (aspirin. Stability. ibuprofen). whenever possible. doesn't prepare you for the pounding of city streets that most of your training and races are run on. Pay Attention to Injury Warning Signs If you think you might be injured. Choose the right running shoes and replace them when the mileage reaches approximately 500 miles. Shins are especially stressed on indoor tracks due to the combination of a hard surface and tight turns. Depending on the type of injury.

High mileage shoes are a quick way to get injured. The shoe breaks down. Running in different shoes on alternating days more evenly distributes the stress on your feet and legs. it's time to purchase a new pair of shoes. or a sports drink. drink until you hear sloshing in your stomach or feel that your stomach is full. Secondary running injuries often occur by continuing to run through pain. either. Only Run Miles Needed to Meet Your Goals Accumulating additional Junk miles is a sure way to cause a body to break down and for running injuries to occur. Run in Shoes with Proper Cushioning and are Right for Your Feet Improper and/or inadequate shoe cushioning will quickly lead to running injuries. orange juice. But don't overdo it. favouring the injured area. Use Fresh Shoes Running on worn out shoes is a prime cause of many running injuries. Stretch Regularly . Run only the miles you need to meet your goals. throws off your running stride. and thereby changing your natural running style. When running. One tip to increase the life of your shoes is to purchase and use more than one pair of shoes. and in turn. more must be better will lead to injury. Following the mantra.the injury to heal. resume drinking. remember to drink plenty of non-dehydrating fluids such as water. When the mileage totals from your running shoes reach approximately 500 miles. It is imperative that you pick the right running shoe that does not have an inordinate amount of wear and tear. Stay Hydrated To avoid heat injury while running. When the sloshing sound goes away.

Running creates stress on certain muscle groups. The best way to avoid stiffness and eventual soreness from stressed. burns additional calories. Stretching is an important complementary aspect of any running program.Lack of stretching or improper stretching can lead to running injuries. Cross-Train Cross-Training is a great way to avoid running injuries. swimming. Some examples of cross training include cycling. cross-country skiing. stair machines and hiking. Soon after you stop running. tightening muscles is to stretch after your run. fights muscle imbalance injuries. Be sure to include some crosstraining/aerobic exercises that supplement your regular running program. Cross training will develop parts of your body that running neglects. muscles that have been stressed begin to tighten. and increases aerobic capacity. .

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