Top 10 Training Tips for Toowoomba’s Peak2Park – Part 1!

Top 10 Training Tips for Toowoomba’s Peak2Park

So you’ve committed to running or walking 5km or 10km in March – congratulations! We completely applaud anyone that takes on a physical challenge that pushes their body and mind – you’re already a champion in our eyes here at The Podiatrist. As you prepare for Sunday, March 3rd, keep in mind that:

There’s a difference between training hard and training smart.

Making small changes to your routine now can make a large impact on how you’re feeling on the day. So, we thought we’d share TEN tips so you can maximise your training efforts and minimise your risk of injury over the next 10 weeks. Here are your first FIVE!

1. Get your soundtrack ready!

Before you even hit the pavement or the gym, you’ve got to get the basics sorted. One of these is your soundtrack! While it seems like a such a small task, but numerous studies have actually proven time and time again that music improves performance, motivation and mood when running. As Podiatrists, we do exactly this and make sure the workout beats are going when we run. If your iTunes doesn’t have any of this music, we recommend looking up “workout” and “run” in Spotify – the selection of playlists there is enormous, and you’re bound to find one, or many, you’ll enjoy.

2. If you’re planning to get new runners closer to run-day, get them now

One of the most common ways that people get injured during any running or sporting event is from getting new shoes right before the event! Usually, when you get a new pair of joggers, you’ll wear them for an hour or two here, then an hour or two there. You may walk around in them at the mall, get a few chores done in the garden, and very gradually, slowly and non-forcefully break them in along the way. As you do, the shoes will stretch, loosen and mould well to your foot and the way your foot moves.

However, if you get a new pair of shoes right before your event, you’ll go from 0 to 100 instantly and end up with plenty of rubbing, blisters and pain. Even if you buy an identical pair to what you’re already wearing, shoes are much stiffer when you first get them, and you’re almost guaranteed to feel some discomfort if you try to break your personal best in them.

Our recommendation is to get any gear you’d like now and wear it, train in it and smash it out on game-day.

3. Mix up your workouts

Let’s be frank. Running or walking for long distances isn’t everyone’s cup of tea! If you’re feeling a bit bored with your regular route or training routine, why not mix it up? Go for a bike ride, a swim, a Zumba session – anything that gets the heart rate up and the blood pumping! Better yet, do it with a friend or family member so that it doesn’t even feel like ‘training’ at all.

If you feel like you’re not quite strong enough to be going for the distances that you’d like to, why not ease into some strength training? Despite the ‘body-builder’ image that pops to mind for many with the words ‘strength-training’, you don’t even need weights at all. Working against your own body weight, as you do with push-ups and squats, is a fantastic way to build strength and can be done from the comfort and privacy of your own home!

4. Warm up every time!

While we all know that we need to warm up before exercise, many of us don’t know exactly all of the benefits. There’s a lot more to it than just getting the body warm! A good warm-up gets the blood flowing to the muscles, joints and tendons which helps increase their resilience to loads and impact forces. This means your risk of injury is decreased as you can push further without damaging muscles and tissues. It also primes your central nervous system to improve your motor skills, balance, coordination and force output, so you can truly give this your all!

Have a warm to hot shower first thing in the morning, and make sure you arrive early to get a good warm-up in. Make sure to include some high knee kicks, bum kicks, lunges and toe touches before moving on to a brisk walk, 5-minute easy run and some 10-second bursts at a higher pace.

5. Change up your tempo

If you’ve become used to walking or running at a certain speed and it’s feeling pretty comfortable, that’s when you know it’s time to change it up and push yourself! 

Start off by adding one minute at a slightly higher pace for every 2 minutes at your regular pace and see how that feels. Then try pushing it to 30 seconds at a significantly higher pace for every 90 seconds at your regular pace. This helps not only your body but also your mind adapt to the varied surfaces you’re going to be on with greater ease, so you won’t be thrown off as easily by difficult or unexpected patches. 

Another fun way to do this is to get some upbeat music with variable tempos and match your walk or run to the tempo! There are free apps available that actually match your pace to a song, like Spotify, so you could give those a go too!

Check back next week for our next five tips to help you train smart and stay focused for Peak2Park! If you’d like personalised help on how to train for the event, or you’ve started to develop and pain and discomfort, book your appointment with our expert team.

We’ll assess what’s going on and causing the problem, and nip it in the bud before any significant damage occurs. We specialise in sports medicine, injuries and getting our patients ready for events such as this! With our world-class diagnostic technology and our highly-skilled team, we’ll have you ready and at your best for race day!

To book an appointment, you can give us a call on 07 4638 3022.

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