By Bobbi Patrick, PRG Personal Trainer and Running Coach
Spring race season is fast approaching and I think most of us are feeling the pressure of signing up for at least one race we want to train for. Let’s talk through how to best prepare for your upcoming race season!
- Set Realistic Goals –
What has your training looked like over the past winter? What races do you think you could feasibly train for off this mileage? These are important questions to ask yourself as you don’t want to sign up for anything that could get you injured trying to reach for.
On average, it takes a solid 3 – 6 months or 18 – 24 weeks to train for a specific race. This time period can include other races within the block as training for your goal race.
- Where To Find Races To Sign Up For:
www.runningintheusa.com is a great source to search for any kind of race you’re looking for whether it is near you.
https://www.certifiedroadraces.com/search/ is run by the United States Association of Track and Field. They verify courses across the United States for racing distances. This is a great tool to ensure that you are running a race that is certified of the distance it is promoting so you can achieve your best times.
www.ultrasignup.com is the likely the best source on the internet for ultra-distance and trail races. You can sort by month, location, type of course, distance and more!
- Plan Out Your “Running Season”:
You’ve found your races, you’re getting excited about training. What next? You should consider your running routine. Remember, 3 – 6 months is the average length it takes to build up your mileage for a race.
- Progress your mileage and make sure you’re following the 10% rule. Only increase your mileage by 10% each week to prevent the potential for injuries.
- The longer the race, the more your weekly mileage should be. However, Listening to your body and figuring out what mileage works best for you is most important.
- You don’t want your “season” of competition to be too long where you get burnt out or mentally fried!
- Hiring a running coach to take the thinking out of this process might be beneficial! Consider hiring your own running coach at Performance Running Gym to help you plan your running season!