Everyone wants to stay fit. Most of us prefer running over other workouts. Running is one of the topmost sports worldwide. It doesn’t require any fancy equipment. You don’t have to do any particular arrangements to get into running.
It is one of the most famous leisure activities. Getting into long-running distance help, you cut down other means of transport like car and bikes. It enables you to cover long distances. It seems quite economical as you don’t have to worry about things like petrol and car maintenance.
It is a source of recreation for some of us; some want to achieve a fitness goal or for means of travel. If you get into the long-running distance to accomplish various purposes, the good news is quite easy. Everyone with a little practice can get himself in the long-running distance.
What is Running Long Distance?
Before jumping into ways and techniques by which you can improve your running skills. Let’s get to know about long-distance running and its endless benefits to the human body. Long-distance is also known as endurance running.
It is a type of continuous running covering a distance of at least 3 kilometers. Stamina and mental strength are the key factors of long-running distance. It is a type of aerobic exercise. Aerobic exercise is low impact and long duration exercise. That doesn’t mean that it has low intensity.
Any exercise is aerobic, which you can sustain for more than just a few minutes while your heart, lungs and muscle are engaged. Long-distance running is an aerobic exercise that makes you sweat, causes you to breathe harder, get your heart beating faster at a higher rate than at rest.
It strengthens your heart and lungs, trains your cardiovascular system to work efficiently to manage oxygen supply to muscles and tissues. Long distance running involves your large muscle group.
Your muscles respire at a higher rate using oxygen and releasing carbon dioxide. To meet the extra demand for oxygen, the heart beats at a faster rate than at rest. Long-distance running is rhythmic.
Benefits of Long Distance Running
There are many benefits of long-running. You should incorporate this into your weekly routine. We all have heard it helps us in weight loss, but that not the only benefit of long distance running. Following are few benefits of long distance running.
- Long distance running helps in boosting your immune system. People who do endurance running don’t get sick often. It increases the level of white blood cells ad lymphocytes with in the body.
- It helps in maintaining a healthy weight. It helps in burning fat. Fat is the fuel source of the human body. When we are engaged in long distance running, our body utilizes the stored fat as a source of energy.
- You might be surprised by the benefit that endurance running helps increasing life span. Research shows that those who regularly do running exercise live longer than people who don’t.
- It decreases the risks of cardiovascular diseases like cardiac infarction and cardiac myopathy. Heart diseases are one of the main reasons for modern people death.
- It decreases the risks of all type of diseases, whether it’s diabetes, Alzheimer’s or heart diseases. In this way, it helps increases your life span by decreasing the risk of many congenital diseases
- It helps improving brain function and strength. Modern research shows that when you do running, it stimulates dopamine release, which is so good for a stressed out brain. Long distance running decreases the risk of many other neuro congenital diseases. So, besides eating a healthy diet and accurate sleep pattern, running exercise helps keep our brains healthier and smarter.
- It helps improving blood circulation by improving the efficiency of blood flow which helps reducing hypertension and resting blood pressure.
- It is also found to help reduce stress and anxiety in today’s world who isn’t aware of depression. Every second person you know is suffering and fighting against depression. Running has proven very effective for such patients.
Long distance running has incredible benefits, as mentioned above. We should try to incorporate it into our weekly routine.
Your First Decision- Indoor or Outdoor
Long distance running is a very easy physical activity. Everything demands practice so do long distance running. The first step is to decide which suits you best indoor running or outdoor. As a beginner, you have to do some training. It’s best to opt for outdoor running. Here’s a quick guide that would be helpful for you if you are confused about whether to go indoor or outdoor running.
Running outdoor seems more enjoyable as you are covering more and more grounds. You are exposed you fresh air, and most of the time, you enjoy the serenity of nature. Outdoor running involves all major muscles of the body like gluteal muscles, calves, quadriceps and triceps. Running outdoor make you feel that your work out is going faster because time naturally seems to move faster.
A treadmill is one of the most popular equipment that mimics natural running. To a runner, it is the best indoor running option. Although it doesn’t offer variety as you get bore soon. You can add your favorite playlist or watch television while running on a treadmill to compensate for this.
Running on a treadmill offers the same difficulty level, and it is very gentle on joint. The smooth cushioned belt of the treadmill is more forgiving than hard pavement. Running on a treadmill can help reduce the impact on your joints.
You can adopt indoor running if you are recovering from any injury, as it’s more kind on your joints than outdoor running. You may assume that running outside is harder, but treadmill have incline settings, and in general, one per cent incline will offer you the same resistance level as an outdoor surface. You can change the intensity of running on a treadmill by adjusting the incline level. In this way, you can experience the same energy cost as outdoors.
Important Tips for Running Long Distance
Long distance running helps to improve your health and reduces stress. Although it is a tough sport, it’s very rewarding. The prerequisite to becoming a long-distance runner is to build up for it. Before getting yourself in long distance running, you have to take off the following things.
To get a good running workout, you need great pair of shoe, and selecting good pair of shoe is sometimes as hard as buying a bike. Go for the pair of sneakers that are comfortable and have a good grip. Many of us think that walking and running shoes are interchangeable, but walking shoes are lighter, providing more support and flexibility.
Before buying shoes for long distance running, keep in mind the fact that what works for one runner may not necessarily work for you, so don’t aimlessly spend much on an expensive running shoe kit just because you like the looks.
The first thing is to analyze your gait before getting your hands on running shoes. Your gait is defined by how your foot comes in contact with the ground.
Suppose you are a beginner and don’t have any clue how to determine your gait. Perform an easy bare foot test. Get your bare foot wet by dipping into the water. Step into a piece of paper and get your wet bare footprint.
Observe footprints. If you see many of your footprints i-e low arch, go for the shoe with more stability. If you see a light bit of your footprint i-e, a high arch, go for light weight and more flexible running shoe.
If you see a classic shape footprint, it indicates that you are a neutral runner with more centralized balance; cushioning shoes will be best for you. Running shoes are made of more mesh. It keeps your feet cool as it allows the air to move easily and freely. Getting incredibly durable and comfortable shoes according to your gait will prevent you from injuries.
You might be thinking that getting running socks is that important? Yes, just like shoes, socks also hold great importance. As a beginner, you will be confused about selecting the right pair of running socks.
It’s better to purchase few pair of running sock and after knowing which sits best with you. You can stock up running socks later. Here tips that can help you select the correct pair of running socks are mentioned below.
- Always go for the breathable ones.
- Running socks should be able to absorb or wipe away moisture from your feet, as running with wet feet bothers you a lot. Wet feet can also cause blisters.
- Running socks should be stretchy and fit well when you put them on your feet. Otherwise, they can wrinkle down, making you uncomfortable at the same time can cause blisters.
- It’s better to select two layer socks. They are a bit expensive but worth buying. The two layer running socks protect you from getting blisters and bruises while running.
Water Proof Plasters
During running, there are chances that you may get blisters. As a safety measure, you should keep them while going for long distance running. They don’t require much space. You can stick them in your pocket.
Warm-Up before Running
Before you go out on the run, warm up yourself by stretching. It’s important to warm up before a run. It will boost up your performance, and you can crush the track or even treadmill. There are many pre-run exercises you can go for, as upper body stretches, leg sweeps, reverse lunge with a twist and many more.
Increasing The Distance Gradually
If you have never been into running a program, you can’t cover miles with in one day. So you need to set small goals initially. If you are inactive for many days, start with walking and then jump to running. Keep a check on your body. If you don’t see any blisters, soreness and joint issues, you can increase your running time.
If you plan to start with a walk, you can alternate it with jogging, then gradually running. If you don’t encounter any joint related issues, then Increase the time of your running. Increasing your running and distance will help you increase your stamina and build up for long distance running.
Why do we feel thirsty when we run? Well, the answer to this when we run, we sweat, and when we sweat, we lose a lot of liquid and salt from our body. It makes our blood thicker and causes our heart to beat faster to provide blood to the body organ and tissues.
So if you dehydrated due to a lack of water within your body, it would affect your running ability because your heart has to beat a bit harder. Dehydration can lead to severe health complications. When you are running, you have to keep yourself hydrated as you are losing water in sweat from the body.
You should take water with you while you are heading running. Don’t drink water before running unless you are thirsty, as it will make you feel full and may affect your running ability. Take a water bottle with you, and whenever your feel thirsty, drink enough water. It will boost up your running performance.
Healthy Food Intake
Running is a cardio exercise that aids you in weight loss; how this weight loss is possible? Your body burns calories that you take by consuming food during running. In this way, you lose weight.
Before starting long distance running, you should have a pre-workout snack. It helps to retain your blood sugar level in a normal range while running. If you are not taking enough calories, you will ultimately feel weak and tired after a few minutes of running.
Add a good amount of carbohydrates and protein to your diet. Lack of protein diet will reduce muscle mass, making you lean and ultimately unfit for long distance running. Avoid junk foods and alternate them with foods rich in vitamins and minerals.