I did something crazy! I registered for a 10K race on October 15th! Eeek! I decided to put all of my hard work in the gym to good use and run a 10K that will benefit a local hospice organization. This group took care of my dad when he was dying from lung cancer, so that adds an extra level of motivation as I approach the race.
Have you ever run a 10K? I have never run a race this long (only a few 5K’s), so I asked all of my best running friends for their advice. Here’s how to train to be a rockstar at your first 10K!
How to Be a Rockstar at Your First 10K Race!
Start With a Plan
As soon as you know you want to run a race, get yourself a good training plan! Hal Higdon training plans came highly recommended from all of my running friends. I am currently following his 8 week Novice 10K plan, modified slightly because I didn’t give myself a full 8 weeks to train (oops!).
Don’t Overdo It!
I was worried about running the full 10K distance as many times as possible before race day. Not necessary! And if I did do that, my poor legs would eventually be totally worn out! As one of my wise running friends said, “Don’t worry about running 6 miles to prepare. People who run marathons don’t run 26 miles at a time in training.” If you have a plan (see above) this won’t be a problem!
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate!
Can we all agree that drinking water is important for our general health and wellness? Whether you are novice or seasoned, drinking water is super important for runners too. Make sure you properly hydrate, especially in the days leading up to your first 10K race. Just also be careful to not over-hydrate.
Fuel Your Body
Seriously consider if you will need food at some point during your race. One of my best running friends says she typically needs some fuel around mile 3 of a 10K. Sports gels, like these best sellers available on amazon, are what was recommended to me.
Get On the Road
You know I’m a gym girl and because of that most of my running is done on a treadmill. To train for my first 10K I need to get outside and run on the road! One of my running role models reminded me that road running is different from the treadmill and harder to pace (since the treadmill paces for you). Road, track, or trail, try to run in an environment that will be similar to your upcoming race course.
Now is Not the Time for New!
All of my running friends warned me not to try ANYTHING new on race day! No new running gear, no new clothes, no foods or drinks you don’t usually consume! You don’t want to be halfway through your race and start experiencing chafing, a stomach ache or worse!
Set a Goal
Goals can be so motivating! My goal for my first 10K is just to finish! 🙂 I want to prove to myself that I can do it. Maybe you have a bigger goal in mind? Do you want to keep a certain pace? Or finish in a certain time? Set a goal! My friend Nicole even used the SMART method of goal setting to run a 10K!
Use Yoga as a Tool
You can use yoga as a tool to support your running. I am doing this yoga for runner’s video on my rest days. It’s mostly stretching, focuses on the muscles used most by runners, and really relieves a lot of my tightness. Yoga with Adriene also has a runner’s cool down and runner’s warm up you can try!
Get Your Mind Right
I recently started reading an awesome book about running: “The Inner Runner: Running to a More Successful, Creative and Confident You.” It’s so motivating and inspiring! Running is a really mental game. Your mind wants to quit long before your body, so training your brain is important too! Reading a great book is just one option. You might also consider positive affirmations, uplifting podcasts, or meditation. Do whatever works for you to get your mind into a positive, confident place before race day!
And Above All Else …
HAVE FUN! 🙂 Rock your first 10K, and enjoy yourself in the process! You’ve got this! 🙂
Have you run a 10K race?
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