Find out some of the most common reasons why your performance might be stalling in that proverbial 'rut' and see our top tips to help you out of it...
The problem: Too much, too often
If you find yourself out of breath or completely drained after every run, you could be pushing your running training too hard.
It’s something known as overtraining, and it happens when your body is worked beyond its capability to recover.
If you are trying to learn how to run faster but are pushing too hard, you’re going beyond the body's capacity to deliver oxygen to your muscles. And if you’re putting in too many miles, your body can tire, meaning you need more time to recover for your next run.
The result? Your performance can plateau or even worsen. In more extreme cases, overtraining can cause injury, sleep disturbance and even depression.
The solution: Take a step-by-step approach
The first step to learn how to run in a healthier way is to know your pace. You can do this with a simple stopwatch, helping you to identify a comfortable level to then factor into your running training.
You also need to manage your distance. If you’re looking to run a long distance, you need to build up gradually over time. Having a running plan with a phased approach can really help – it sets milestones and gradually increases the distance to help you reach your goal without overtraining. For help with setting your goal, start a running training plan with the MY ASICS app.
The problem: Getting the right fuel
Diet is essential not only in providing the energy you need when you’re running, but also in helping you to recover and build muscle.
Complex carbohydrates help your body produce glycogen which delivers energy to your muscles, while proteins are essential to help repair and build muscles as well as produce hormones. There are also fats, vitamins and minerals to factor in.
The solution: Balance your diet
As you’re determining how to improve your running, think carefully about what you’re eating. In addition to vitamins and minerals, your diet should be balanced according to what works for you.
Get some inspiration, here:
The problem: Too much strain when you’re not running
If you’re working hard, stressed or playing a lot of other sports, it’s easy to burn out. The body still needs time to recover if you are going to run at your best.
The solution: Take it easy
It might sound obvious, but you need some rest and relaxation.
It gives your body time to repair itself and recover in order to build up your strength for your next run.
The problem: Not enough sleep
Tiredness is another factor that can affect your performance. Again, it’s all down to recovery – if you’re not sleeping properly your body doesn’t have enough time to recover.
The solution: Wind down before bed
Take a warm bath just before bed and try to relax. Another great way to wind down before sleep is to read a book or listen to some relaxing music.
And if you’re suffering from severe sleep problems, consult your doctor to see if they can help you get the rest you need.
Learn more about how sleep can improve your running, here.