Have you ever wondered how long-distance marathon runners are able to accomplish their feat without giving up midway? Do you want to join the league of long-distance marathon runners but dread the fact that you might not be able to run the entire distance? If yes, then, let us share the secret with you. Mile repeats are the secret behind long-distance marathon runners being able to run the distance. If you want to be successful in this endeavor then, you too will have to learn about mile repeats, how they can enhance your performance during marathons, and the approaches to it. If you want to learn all you need to know about this concept, then, this is the article for you.
Mile repeats help the person better in two aspects of running which are deemed critical, especially in marathon training. The first one is endurance and the second aspect is speed. While the distance of one mile is can help increase your endurance, it cannot help much when it comes to helping you gain speed.
Mile repeats, like the name, says, are running one mile many times with breaks taken between each. While the urge to either sit or stand still during these breaks is high, this needs to be avoided. It is recommended that the runner is in constant movement even during these breaks. If you want to be able to run over a long distance, then, there is one strategy that is used by most runners that even you can try out. Run the first mile at a high energy level and then jog for the next half a mile. In addition to keeping your body active and in motion, it also prepares you for the next high energy interval.
Warming up your body and cooling it down are two important parts of mile repeats. As a part of the warm-up procedure, you can run for a couple of miles at a pace that you are comfortable with. During the warm-up process, you can take a break after completing the first mile, and perform some stretching exercises which will help relax your muscles. Restrict your cooling down procedure to a two-mile limit. Cooling down your body is very important because it releases the tension your muscles experience. Remember not to perform any high-energy exercises during the process of cooling down your body since it negates the entire purpose of cooling down.
The next aspect that you will have to consider is how many miles repeats you would like to do. This aspect is dependent on your current running speed. You should opt for the number of mile repeats that will help you build up both your speed and endurance levels. The optimum number, recommended by many experts in the field of running is either four or six. If you opt for mile repeats which are lesser than four, then, it will help increase your speed while running but will have no effect on endurance, and opting for more than six-mile repeats will help you build your endurance levels but will not help you much in terms of increasing your speed. Hence, when you are still in the practice phase of mile repeats opt for the number within this range.
You can practice mile repeats either on a running track or on roads. It is important to remember that, while practicing on roads, you need to avoid obstacles that can rob you of your speed, for example, an electric pole and while practicing on race tracks, remember to keep to the inside lane of the track.
The day after you have practiced mile repeats should be dedicated to rest and relaxation. Ensure you don’t engage in any form of strenuous workouts on this day. It is imperative to give your body enough time to relax the muscles which you put to full use on the previous day.
While mile repeats may sound to be a great option for people who desire to take part in long-distance running events, all is not a bed of roses on this path. You will have to be prepared to face the risks that come with the territory. First of all, if you plan to start out the mile repeats work out, then, ensure you have a professional instructor to guide you. Doing it without the right guidance on hand can cause a lot more harm than you can imagine. The instructor will design a mile repeats program for your keeping your health and present abilities in mind.
You will have to ensure that you stick to the guidelines of mile repeats that are given to you by the instructor. These guidelines are given so you can minimize the amount of risk and injury caused to the muscles of your leg. This is especially important when you practice mile repeats to contest in an upcoming event that is just days away. Getting injured just a few days before the scheduled event can be a very challenging situation for a person who has been taking great pains to get trained for the event.
In order to prevent stomach cramps from occurring when you are practicing mile repeats, ensure you get instructions from your coach on what to eat and what not to eat before your practice sessions. Avoid heavy meals and concentrated health drinks just before your running session. Also, remember not to run beyond the speed mentioned to you since excessive strain on the lower abdominal muscles can also give rise to stomach cramps.
Keep yourself sufficiently hydrated during your mile repeat sessions, so you don’t fall prey to nausea and dehydration which can, at times, be life-threatening. Ensure you drink sufficient quantities of water not only before your training sessions but also during the session.
Keeping all these simple things in mind will ensure that you are all set to take on long-distance running without compromising on your health aspects.