Spring is pretty stunning in San Luis Obispo (especially because we’ve had some rain this year; at least enough to turn the grass green). The wildflowers are emerging, the sun is shining, and the temperature is perfect for some spring training. Before you jump into your running, below are some spring training tips to get you motivated and stay healthy!
Spring Running Tip #1: Don’t overdo it
If you haven’t put in very many winter miles, or if you decided to register for the City to the Sea race, and you’re just now starting your training plan, ease into it. Early onset injuries in running are common from over-doing it, so don’t run faster or farther than what you’ve gradually worked up to. A good rule of thumb is to run to your current level of fitness. Coaches often advise a 10% mileage increase every week, if you’re a more experienced runner. The most important thing is to listen to your body: Some soreness is normal, but sharp pain is not okay – particularly if it’s in your IT bands, hamstrings, Achilles tendons, or calves. If your pain is beyond normal soreness, back down until it goes away, and then gradually increase again.
Spring Running Tip #2: Register for a training race to prepare your body
Once you’ve put in some good base miles and added in some speed work, pick a race with a shorter distance than your big race goal (so shorter than the half-marathon distance if you’re training for City to the Sea), and use this race as a way to prep your body for the demands of running fast, with no breaks. A 5k or 10k race is a great distance option. In fact, Cuesta College is hosting a 5k race on May 8th. Perfect warm-up race for City to the Sea!
Spring Running Tip #3: HYDRATE
As the temperatures warm up, hydration is critical. Consider carrying a water bottle designed for running, wearing a belt that holds fluid flasks, or even running with a camelback. Dehydration can sneak up on you quickly, and the effects can be dangerous. Keep these hydration tips in mind:
Pre-hydrate: Drink 8 to 16 ounces one to two hours before your run so that your body has water to use during your run. If you’re running early in the morning, drink 8 ounces right when you wake up.
Stay on schedule: If you set a schedule and stick to it, you’ll be able to stay ahead of dehydration. Set your watch to beep every 15 minutes and drink during your run. When it’s really hot out, you may need to drink every 5-10 minutes.
Replace electrolytes: Water is important, but when you run, you sweat and lose crucial electrolytes. Choose an electrolyte drink that has the perfect ratio your body needs and isn’t loaded with unnecessary additives and sugar. Our drink of choice is FLUID.
Featured Sponsor: FLUID
Speaking of FLUID, they’re a sponsor of this year’s City to the Sea race! FLUID is headquartered in San Luis Obispo, and they’ve developed their unique formulas with athletes in mind. All of their products are backed by the latest scientific research in sports nutrition, and they leave out the high sugars and unnecessary additives that so many sports drinks contain. Shop for FLUID products online and fuel your next run.