Today, I’m going to share with you four exciting ways to help you become a better runner during this quarantine.
Here is the thing…
When you are training for a specific marathon or race, one of your priorities is to follow your training plan as accurately as possible —a smart thing to do.
A training plan has a structure and a logical progression to make you a faster and stronger runner. At least that is the goal of a science-based training plan developed by a professional coach.
The more precisely you follow it, the better the chances of success.
But with all the races canceled and with all the people in quarantine, suddenly, the pressure to follow the training plan is no longer there.
That’s a good thing because now, you can place your energy and focus toward becoming a better runner, so when the time comes to get on a starting line, you will be ready.
I’ve shared these next four tips with my athletes, and all of them are getting the motivation and drive to get back to training and seeing results.
So without further delay, here they are.
4 Ways the Quarantine Can Help You Become a Better Runner
- Focus on your running weaknesses.
- Work on your mobility.
- Recover smartly.
- Try something new (you may impress yourself).
Focus on Your Running Weaknesses
Do you consider yourself a slow runner? Do you dread long runs?
Now is the time to focus on these things, without the pressures associated with following a training plan.
You can focus on your speed workouts and rest during the weekend, or focus on your long runs and take a break from the speed workouts.
And another important question…
Do you do strength training? Now is the perfect time to do it. Stronger muscles make you a stronger runner.
I created an 8-week strength program that is specifically designed for runners and can be done from the comfort of your house.
The point is, you can put all your energy toward your biggest weakness as a runner, and when the time comes to train for a new race, you will have better chances of achieving a personal record.
Work on Your Mobility
The following meme perfectly sums up my next point.
Running stiffens your muscles and joints, but lack of mobility makes your muscles work harder.
When your muscles need to overcome your lack of mobility while running, you’re not only making them work more than what they need but also losing precious energy as a consequence.
When you become a more mobile runner, you become a more efficient runner.
Working on your mobility is super-easy. You need just 10 minutes every morning, and you’ll start to see the differences in a few weeks.
You can see my 10-minute mobility routine in the video below.
Without any race in the near future, it’s the perfect time to give your body time to recover.
But that does not mean that you can lay on the couch all day eating ice cream.
It means that you can listen to your body to help it recover.
Here are three ways you can do it…
- Run what you want. Right now, you are not bound to a strict running schedule. If you feel like running just three miles, do it. The goal is to keep active and continue to improve.
- Foam roll. There are thousands of videos on YouTube that teach you how to do it.
- Work on your mobility. See the previous point.
Try Something New
I experienced this one firsthand.
I’m a super-disciplined runner. If my training plan says that I need to run 3.5675 miles, I run 3.5675 miles.
And until a few weeks ago, my longest run/race was a marathon.
I’ve always wanted to do an ultramarathon, but I was always training for a specific race, and an ultramarathon had never been a priority.
But with my May marathon canceled, I decided to try one.
So, on April 4, I ran 50 miles (80 km) in 11 hours and 49 minutes.
I was super impressed. It’s a significant accomplishment, and I would never have tried it if it weren’t for this quarantine. Now I’m more confident going into my next marathon.
My next goal for May is to break my 5k personal record of 17:53.
What time or distance would you like to try? Go for it!
Being in quarantine and not having a race in the near future gives you an incredible opportunity to become a better runner.
We explored four exciting ways to do it here.
Pick one or do them all. Every new step you take, every different thing you try will make you a better runner.