Running Advice for Race Season with Stef Corgel
Whether you’re running a 5k, Marathon, or just for fun, our ACTV Club Trainer Stef Corgel has advice and guidance for no matter where you are in your running journey. From ways to stay motivated to the proper running fuel, she shares all of her tools in her running toolbox that will have you out on the track in no time! Let’s start from the beginning, what motivates you to run?
Stef’s favorite ways to stay motivated to run:
- Train with an accountability buddy! IT MAKES ALL THE DIFFERENCE… especially on the days you’re not feeling it.
- Listen to music, but also podcasts! For long distance training, many say that they maintain a more realistic pace when listening to podcasts and correct BPM music.
- Run from A to B! Run to the grocery store 3 miles away and have a friend or Uber give you a lift on the way home.
- Tour a new city… by foot! Discover new paths and trails. Take photos at rest areas, then continue your run!
- Run to somewhere BEAUTIFUL. Consider a sunrise or sunset trail run where the view is as rewarding as the miles you conquer.
- Join a run club or running challenge. Having a set goal or number of miles to run in a month or training cycle keeps you on track!
- Get fresh new Vuori running gear (like their upgraded Clementine Short 2.0). Retail therapy is a real thing!
Get started with a Warm Up:
- Get in a routine of warming up 5-10 minutes before your run. While many runners use a slow and steady jog as the warm up, others prefer dynamic stretches that imitate running motions.
- Ex. High knee pulls, calf raises, marching in place, hamstring stretches, reverse lunge and reach (10-12 reps each, twice through)
Tips to cool down Post Run:
- Take your time! Jogging/walking cooldown.
- Mobility and/or static stretching
- Foam roll, massage tools, hot/cold therapy
Simplified Fueling for Runs
- If your training is within that 45-minute range, don’t feel like you need to bring any fuel with you unless to hydrate. Post run, make sure to rehydrate and have a protein-rich meal or snack. No adjustments in diet need to be made for the 5k distance and very few for the 10k distance.
- Training for greater running distance requires a higher caloric intake, focusing on protein and carbs. During longer runs, runners carry gels, electrolyte gummies, or any source of packable quick glucose to keep their mind and muscles sharp. Hydrate as needed!
- Many runners have their specific pre-run meal, consumed 2+ hours ahead. Before your workout, a half protein bar, piece of toast, or banana should suffice. Post workout, a substantial, balanced meal is needed with a nice balance of macronutrients. It is important not to skimp on protein!
- Limit raw fruits, vegetables, and other foods that may cause intestinal distress a few hours before the run. It’s NOT fun to run a race with a sour stomach!
Steps to take to prepare for a 5k
- Depending on your current fitness level, a 5k could take 6-8 weeks to prepare for OR something you could crush as soon as next week! The 5k distance is the perfect running goal for beginners or for athletes looking for an introduction to endurance training.
- An example for the intermediate runner following a 4-week training plan may consist of 3 running days split up between 2 cross-training days and 2 rest days.
Steps to take to prepare for a 10k, half marathon, marathon
- Start slow and get a “game plan” early on! The longer the race, the more time you’ll need to allow yourself to train and reach milestones along the way. Your training will include at least 4 runs per week, a few days of cross training or very low impact training, and a 1-2 days of rest and active recovery. The body will take several weeks to adjust to simply “being on your feet” for an extended period of time.
- Seek out races during your training period that indicate if you are training properly. - Running a half marathon? Sign up for a 10k race a few weeks before to experience those pre-race jitters and learn to pace yourself.
- Running a marathon? Sign up for a half marathon to get a true feel of racing for an extended amount of time.
Running days will vary in style in order for the runner to better their speed, strength, and endurance. Here are 4 different running styles:
- Longer, sustained running efforts that are just below your race pace. These runs are meant to develop your anaerobic threshold and feel “comfortably difficult.” Whereas during your warm up, you may be able to hold a conversation, tempo runs should be faster than conversational pace and sustained.
- Much like HIIT training! These runs are meant to challenge your cardiovascular system by elevating your heart rate with a faster running pace, then following that effort with an active recovery pace.
Hill Runs (or Hill Repeats)
- Choose a hill that fits 200-400 meters with a slight grade incline or that will take about 30 seconds to climb. On repeat (reps prescribed by your training plan) run up at race pace and jog/walk down at an easy pace. Let your breathing become easy and relaxed before you run the next hill.
- A race course is seldom completely flat, so train for the terrain in advance and amaze yourself when your body knows what to do when you approach that massive hill on mile 9! Knowing how to breath while running on incline will also ease race day anxiety that could cause your body to tense up.
- Time to get strong! Like lifting weights, hills will challenge the body to adapt to resistance.
- Moderate pace, prioritizes length of workout and time spent on the feet with the goal of maintaining this pace. Most training programs call for 1 long run per week, adding milage every week for a slow adaptation.
- For a 5k race, every consecutive week may add on .25 mile per week - For marathon training, every consecutive week may add on 2-4 miles and build until 20-22 miles before tapering.
- Consider running long runs with a training partner or group of friends that are your same pace. These can seem overwhelming when done alone, but as a pack, you get twice the satisfaction!
Additional training to help you crush your running goals:
- Check out Vuori ACTV Club for some great examples of resistance training for runners! A resistance training workout for runners should always include these functional movements: push, pull, hinge, squat, twist.
- For example: pushup, bent over row, squat, lunge, woodchoppers, Russian twists.
- This will help the runner stay injury-free and provide some relief from the repetitive compounding movement of running.
- Other modes of cardio: swimming, biking
- Low Impact and Active Recovery modes: pilates, yoga, walking
- Kick your feet up and relax, but don’t forget to walk around a bit! Try not to be completely sedentary, so that you’ll feel amazing the next exercise day.
- Massage, compression therapy, foam rolling, stretching: With the high volume of training, muscle adhesions and micro tears happen. This is a normal and natural occurrence for your muscles to strengthen and build endurance, but recovery will be quicker with more circulation to the area.
- Nutrition is key, even on off days! Make sure to stay hydrated and eat enough to fuel your body for the training days ahead.
Bookmark this blog so you always have Stef’s running advice at the tip of your fingers! We hope to see you out there.
Shop Stef's look: Clementine 2.0