"Training is an integral part of success to good health, dudes. You have to follow the regime closely in order to achieve the results that you want." Quote from our school coach.
Let¡¯s get fit!
Worried about being obese? Troubled by your awful performance in the recent fitness test? You would not be concerned by all these problems once you adopted the habit of running. By reading through this guide about running, you would find running not as difficult as it seems before and would indeed find running an enjoyable thing to do!
First, I would start off with some running terms that you would need to know before starting your training.
Fartlek is ¡°speed play¡± in Swedish. It is actually a form of interval training, just that it is not as strict and disciplined as in during intervals. In fartlek, there are no restrictions in between; runners just run fast or slow as to their wish over considerable distances. By doing this kind of workout, a runner enjoys his run and also has the effects of interval training.
Tempo run is a type of fast continuous run over a period of 20 to 40 minutes. The run begins with a slow pace, then gradually increasing to one¡¯s *lactate threshold* pace and then after that slowing down again. This workout would make you stronger in terms of running fast and developing the ability to take fatigue better, meaning that your legs would not tire out so soon. Lactate threshold pace is around your 10km pace; for example, a guy having his 10km personal best as 40mins would run the tempo run for about 4 to 4:10 per km for 20 to 40 minutes.
As is suggested by its name, long run is basically running long distances at an easy pace. Long run can be over any distances, depending on how long you can run and how long you can sustain. Long runs help to build up the basic stamina and running foundation, and also help in recovery of hard workouts like going for a tempo run the day before.
runs are very important as this helps in the recovery of your body
from an intense workout. It helps circulate the blood and therefore
helps in the recovery of muscles ache. For example, after finishing
an exhausting workout maybe like the VO2 max intervals (see below),
the body is very tired and probably suffers from aches and soreness
of muscles. By running a slow recovery jog the next day, you will
find that your muscle ache would slowly disappear. From this, you
can see that recovery runs are also an essential part of your training
program, excluding those killing intervals.
Why do people run? Running is so exhausting, so painful, so tedious, but why do people still want to run? Most often, people run to keep in shape and to reach an ideal body weight. Through running, one can burn off calories more than any other exercise such as biking or swimming; therefore, most people run to burn off more calories and keep fit.
Another health benefit of running is that it lowers blood pressure by maintaining the elasticity of the arteries. In fact, most elite runners have very low blood pressure due to this.
running also helps maximize the lungs¡¯ potential, as it keeps them
strong and powerful. For us high school boys and girls, keeping fit
is one important issue; another key point about running is that it
helps us to pass our fitness test. For example in Singapore here (our
group is from Singapore), we have the 2.4km run. Our training program
has been tested on 10 boys in our class who had been failing their
test; they improved drastically in just 2 to 3 months after adopting
our regime, passing with flying colours.
is the 1-week training program that we have come up with :
Monday : Long run 5km (steady)
Tuesday : Easy run 3km (comfortable)
Wednesday : Rest
Thursday : Fartlek 4km
Friday : Easy run 3km (comfortable)
Saturday : Tempo run 25 minutes (start with 5 mins slow jogging, next 15 mins slightly faster , then 5 mins slow jogging pace again.)
Rest and Recovery
We wish you a happy time training and achieving great improvement in your fitness!
Some other interesting running terms :
What is VO2 max? you may ask. VO2 max is a measure of the maximum amount of oxygen that a person can take in during an exercise. Normal people who are not sportsmen do not really need to have a high amount of VO2 max as they do not really require it. However, for those accomplished athlete, they need to increase their maximum intake of oxygen during exercise in order to cope with the intensity of their exercise.
In a cross-country race, athletes need a high amount of oxygen to run fast; a way to improve their time is to improve their VO2 max which would enable them to run more efficiently and effectively. There are mainly two ways to improve one¡¯s VO2 max. One is to increase the quantity of exercise and the other to increase the intensity or quality of the workout.
Increasing quantity of
exercise means to increase the distance of the workout, for example
by running 8km to 10km everyday. However, when an athlete achieves
saturation point, or has reached a very high point, he finds that
he cannot improve on his VO2 max anymore. As a result, he needs to
increase his workout intensity, example from running intervals of
5x1000m at 3:30min to 5x1000m at 3:25min.
Another way for a cross-country runner to improve his time is to do a workout that improves his lactate threshold. What is lactate threshold? Lactate threshold is the point during increasingly intensive training at which lactic acid begins to accumulate above resting levels.
Have you sometimes felt
that your legs are heavy and stiff after a fast race? That is a sign
that excessive lactic acid is being accumulated around your legs.
Lactate threshold training would enable one to run faster by having
less or little pain at a certain pace where he felt a great pain before
the workout. The best way to improve one¡¯s lactate threshold is by
running tempo runs or fast, continuous runs that are just slightly
above one¡¯s lactate threshold pace.