First I wish you all a happy new year and all the best for 2017. Also I want to thank all my readers that came back to my side, subscribed to the newsletter or followed me on social media!
To kick off the new year I want to share some ideas in case you haven’t thought about a new year resolution. There are plenty of things you as a runner can work on no matter your current level. Here are some things I came up with:
This is probably the most obvious one. Just try to run at list one more mile this year than in the last. If you just started running last year you can also alter this goal to double your mileage for example. If you’re not a runner yet get some inspiration.
This is a dynamic one that takes advantage of your competitiveness. It’s easy nowadays to compare the amount of miles with all the smart phone tracking apps out there. In case you don’t have a running buddy for your competition just try to find one on social media or in Apps like Strava.
I ran an average pace over the last year of 5.5 minutes per kilometer or 8.8 minutes per mile. Pretty slow but mostly due to the fact that I ran a lot on technical trails and climbed up some steep hills over the year.
I’ll try to improve my average pace this year and so could you!
This is a resolution about consistency. There might be times of the year where going for a runner needs some overcoming especially in winter and around christmas. Try to go for a run at least once every week of the entire year.
I love doing this because it gives my everyday running life a great deal of variety. I guess we all have our standard routes but try this year to discover new terrain. Make sure you plan your route before you head out to avoid getting lost.
Also great to get some change on your running routine is to run alongside different people. You can learn from their running experiences and they can benefit from yours. When running with different people the chance of getting bored on your workouts is pretty small.
I love hanging out on the couch after an intense run and read something. So why not read a book about running while recovering. There are great book out there from runners but I’ll suggest you start with Christopher McDougall’s Born To Run in case you haven’t read it yet. It will for sure get you hooked even more into long distance running.
In case you’re not doing this already, try to bring some structure into your workout. If you train towards a specific race plan your training in the 8-12 weeks before the big day. Otherwise just make monthly plans how much and how fast you plan to run.
In addition to plan out your training I recommend you track your workouts and analyze them afterwards. With this you can see if the training you planned actually works for the goal you set yourself. The most important metrics are distance, pace and your heart rate.
There are tons of tracking Apps and heart rate monitors out there for every budget. I prefer Strava with either my Apple Watch or my Suunto Ambit.
If you like trail running and running on hilly terrain, increasing your total elevation gain for the year could be another goal you can set yourself. Just make sure it is compatible with your distance or pace goals to make sure you’re not over-straining your body.
This is my big resolution for this year! I don’t have any weight issues but I can no longer deny that I’m a complete sugar addict. Reflect on your last years diet and try to figure out if you get the nutrients you need. Make sure you consume the right energy sources and get enough vitamins and minerals.
Are you running in old-fashioned running shoes with heavy cushioning? If so maybe you could consider transforming to a more minimalistic footwear this year. Make sure you start slowly maybe with just a mile or two in the first week.
Another underestimated thing for endurance runners is strength training. It’s important to have a strong core and strong leg muscles when you plan to going for the marathon distance or even more. Try to include some core workouts into your training routine.
Are you stretching enough? Stretching is one of the best things you can to in order prevent common running injuries. Try to stretch at least to times a week for 15-20 minutes and focus on calves, quads, hamstring and hip muscles. Preferably you should stretch one hour after a run.
You could also try to add an additional day of the week where you exercise. That doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to increase your running volume. You can also distribute your current mileage on the new number of days. Or you could cross train on the additional workout day.
Cross training is a great way to improve your endurance without hitting on your joints too much. Especially in the winter months when it’s cold and the ground is frozen and slippery indoor swimming or cycling might be a good way to complement your running workouts.
This obviously is a pace goal. And a rewarding one if you achieve it. If you want to train for a new PB choose a distance that you are comfortable with and don’t mix it with too much other goals.
Other than racing faster at a distance you already are experienced in, you could try to go for a longer distance. Why not make 2017 the year of your first marathon? If you decide know to do one in autumn there’s still a lot of time to train for it.
So you’re quite into running but your friends don’t get your point? Try to convince at least one friend to try running regularly this year. It’s great to see a friend getting healthier and improve in something you like as well. And of course you’ll get a new running buddy.
I’m still wearing running clothes that I bought several years ago. It’s great that these products are so durable but I also like to try out new stuff. It’s easy with running shoes as I normally buy 2-4 pairs a year but other products I can use for quite a long time.
Try out some new equipment this year to figure out which brands or types of gear work best for you.
This is an easy thing to do for you and helps me to stay in touch with my readers. I normally send out a newsletter every other week with the latest news and running tips. Just type in your email address below and hit subscribe and you’re all set.
So I’m curious if you have found a new year’s resolution in this post or if you came up with something else related to running. Let us know in the comments section below.