Every runner knows that the night before a big race, you're supposed to eat a giant bowl of pasta…right? Wrong.
You can't completely fill your muscles with glycogen from just one meal, "which is why you should start carbo-loading two or three days before your race," says Monique Ryan, R.D., author of Sports Nutrition for Endurance Athletes.
Recipes from Runner-Chefs
Here are four other rules of carbo-loading you need to follow to run your best:
KEEP TOTAL CALORIES IN CHECK
Starting two to three days before your event, 85 to 95 percent of your calories should come from carbs. You're not eating many more calories per day than you were during the thick of your training-it's just that more of those calories are coming from carbs.
AVOID FAT AND PROTEIN
Both nutrients fill you up faster than carbs and take longer to digest, Ryan says. Pick jam-not butter-for your toast, tomato sauce in lieu of alfredo sauce on your pasta, and frozen yogurt instead of ice cream for dessert.
Blog Posts by From the editors of Runner's World
Every runner knows that the night before a big race, you're supposed to eat a giant bowl of pasta…right? Wrong.Read More »from Are you carbo-loading the wrong way?
Your desk job is bad for your fitness. Even when you get up, your muscles remain in their shortened position, which forces them to work harder to elongate when called back to action. Find ways to move every hour, and try this routine that engages muscles ignored when we sit. Do three sets of 30 reps (both sides) of each exercise three times a week.
Once the summer heat fades into crisp autumn weather, it's hard not to run a little bit faster, even on easy runs. If you've been running regularly for at least two to three months, you're ready to pick up the pace on purpose.
Running faster than normal once or twice a week is a great way to boost your fitness and break up your routine. The following workouts are all entertaining ways to play with speed-on your own or with your running buddies. In your faster segments, you should hit a pace that makes talking difficult but not one that causes you to hyperventilate.Push The Pace Without Hitting A Wall
ACCELERATE AND GLIDE
Jog slowly for 10 minutes to warm up. Then pick up the pace over 10 steps and hold that speed for 10 to 20 more steps. Slow down and walk for one minute. Repeat the sequence two or three times. Every week, add additional accelerations or steps to your "glide" as you feel comfortable.
CAT AND MOUSE
Do this speed play with a friend (or two). JogRead More »from 4 Fun ways to get faster this fall
- From the editors of Runner's World | Healthy Living – Fri, Sep 23, 2011 5:24 PM EDT
If you're training for a half or full marathon this fall, your highest-mileage weeks are likely right on the horizon. Some runners refer to this tough four-week period as Monster Month, and if you've never experienced it before, you'll soon understand why.Read More »from What to do (and not to do) during your toughest training weeks
To thrive during Monster Month, it's more important than ever to pay attention to the details of staying fit, focused, and balanced. You have the most to lose, but also the most to gain. We'll tell you what to do - and what to avoid doing - to make sure you gain every advantage you can.
Set the Right Pace During a Race
Try a dress rehearsal. Treat one of your longest runs as a race simulation. Keep the pace comfortably slow, but do everything else - eating, drinking, dressing - as if it's race day. Run at the same time of day and on similar terrain - even on the course itself if that's practical. This physical and mental rehearsal can reveal a problem that you can correct.
Get a massage. Regular massages are most valuable
Browsing running shoes in the store can be overwhelming, and shopping online can be even worse. With so many shoes to choose from, how can you make sure you're shelling out for a pair that will work for you?Read More »from Which running shoes are best for you?
You can go a long way toward discovering what you need in a running shoe by looking at your feet. There are three basic foot types, each based on the height of your arches. The quickest and easiest way to determine your foot type is by taking the "wet test."
1) Pour a thin layer of water into a shallow pan
2) Wet the sole of your foot.
3) Step onto a brown paper shopping bag.
4) Step off and look down.
Watch: How to Tie Your Shoes
Observe the shape of your foot and match it with one of the following foot types. Although other variables (such as your weight, weekly mileage, and fit preferences) come into play, knowing your foot type is the first step toward finding the right shoe for you.
Normal (medium) Arch If you see about half of your arch, you have the most common foot
When you're feeling good, it can be tempting to push yourself too often and run more miles than you can handle. Give in to that temptation, though, and you won't feel good anymore.Read More »from 5 signs you’re overdoing it
If you don't take time for proper R&R, your body won't adapt to the stress of your training-you won't get stronger or faster, explains Stacy Sims, Ph.D., at the Stanford Prevention-Research Center, School of Medicine. And this happens to recreational runners more than you might think. "With deadlines, chores, bills, kids, and lack of sleep, it's more challenging to recover properly from your runs," says Sims.
Pay attention to these five markers. If more than one of these indicators raises a red flag, you should consider taking a day or two off.
1. You're cranky When your body is overwhelmed by training (or other stressors), it produces hormones that can cause irritability or anxiety. Stress also halts chemicals like dopamine, a neurotransmitter in the brain that has a big bummer effect on mood when
It happens to us all, sooner or later. You're running along, minding your own business, when some guy driving by rolls down his window to make a noise at you. Whether it's a catcall, a wolf-whistle, or a "hey, baby," this kind of unwanted attention can really throw you off.
Don't let catcallers, or any other irritant, get in your head and ruin your run. Here's how to overcome common annoyances and get back in your blissed-out zone:
The Annoyance: Catcallers
The Solution: Spin It
Instead of taking the bait and shouting back, use the other's rudeness for your gain. "See it as a compliment, that it means, 'I'm doing something that they can't do,'" says Adam Krajchir, founder and director of Race with Purpose and head coach for New York Road Runners' Team for Kids.
Advice On How To Not Be An Annoying RunnerRead More »from What’s the best way to deal with catcallers?
The Annoyance: Chatty Cathys
The Solution: Block Them
Headphones can be your first line of defense, even if you're not really using them. "I've
Gearing up for your first half-marathon? You're not alone! The half is the fastest-growing race distance in the United States, and the distance most dominated by women. (A whopping 59 percent of half-marathon finishers in 2010 were female.)Read More »from 6 Tips for running your first half-marathon
And what's not to love? You get the satisfaction of completing an impressive distance - 13.1 miles - without the time-suck of training for a full. But when you're gearing up for your first, the jump to a race with the word "marathon" in the title can be intimidating.
Never fear: Joe English, a coach in Portland, Oregon (running-advice.com), has some tips to carry you through every phase of the 10-week training process, from the first steps of your first run to your first steps across the finish line.
During weeks one through three…
Coach's Tip: Even if you feel great, stick to your plan and resist the urge to do too much too soon. "Overdoing it can lead to fatigue or even injury," says English.
Exercises to Help You Avoid Injury
During week five…
Baggy shorts? Cotton T's? Forget it! Women have more fashionable (and functional) athletic wear options than ever, says writer Sarah Bowen Shea. Style-conscious runners, or "fastinistas," wear what they think performs well athletically and aesthetically, including these attention-getting pieces you'll want to live in.
As much as you look forward to it, vacation poses a dilemma: Should you use the extra time to relax or run? Luckily, it is possible to maintain your fitness on holiday without alienating your travel companions or spoiling the magic of a margarita. Here are running coach Jeff Galloway's tips from on how to navigate any situation so you're in shape to run when you return home.
HOLIDAY HURDLE: You can't break away from the group to run.
GET OVER IT: Walk together 30 to 60 minutes a day. Long walks, like long runs, can help build and maintain endurance. You'll get in quality hang-out time while everyone gets in better shape.
GET OVER IT: Aqua jog for 30 minutes. Pushing against water's resistance can eliminate inefficient movement, which can improve your form on land. Plus, it's a great cardiovascular workout. Wear a flotation belt to keep you uprightRead More »from 4 Simple ways to stay fit on vacation