It’s been a while since we brought you anything from our Beyond The Run series. With the holidays surrounding us and the new year just around the corner, fitness is something that is on our minds and hopefully on yours as well. While I’ve participated in a few 5K fun runs, I haven’t taken on the challenge of anything more than that. Since the Disney Princess Half Marathon is on my long-term bucket list, taking steps to get there is something I hope to do. I was provided with some great tips to help me get there. I was excited to see that I had already incorporated some of these into my fun runs!
6 Ways to Take the Scariness Out of Your 10K Run
If you’re taking on a 10K run, there is no need to be scared of what lies ahead. These six ideas will not only make your 10K run less scary, they will help you to prepare more effectively for the physical challenge you need to overcome.
1. Run in character
What better way to have some fun during your 10k race than by dressing up? If you’re running as a group, you might want to pick a single theme, such as Disney characters. Or, if you’re running during the Halloween season, why not dress up as a zombie, or a witch? Not only does running in character make things more fun, it can inspire your sponsors to pay a little more money towards your chosen charity.
2. Bring a fan club
Especially if you’re inexperienced, having the support of friends and family during a grueling 10K race might be the difference between finishing in respectable time and failing to make the finish line. Try to enlist as much support as you possibly can well in advance of race day, and ask your supporters to position themselves at staggered positions throughout the course. Just make sure you have someone spurring you on to a sprint finish at the end.
3. Get your body prepared
The thing that scares most novices about running a 10K is the physical challenge it entails. Endurance, mental strength, conditioning and cardiovascular fitness are all required in order to complete a 10K safely and in a reasonable time. However, the journey to fitness and conditioning is long one and it requires motivation, effective training and a healthy, well-balanced diet to complete.
Utilize wearable technology such as a Samsung Gear coupled with running apps such as RunKeeper or Runtastic to help train. By starting your training early and monitoring your progress, you can gradually improve your distance as well as your speed. Before you know it, you’ll be ready for a 10K!
4. Run with friends
The ability to share your experience, turn to friends for support and chat during your 10K could give you the motivation you need to get you to the finish line. Competing in a 10K with friends also gives you the comfort of knowing that you’re not the only one putting your body through a major physical challenge. This is very much a case of safety in numbers!
5. Play games during the race
Whether you are running alone or as part of a group, you can play simple games during a race in order to distract yourself from any pain or discomfort you might be experiencing. This may involve a simple game of ‘eye-spy’, or it might be something in your head, such as counting the number of yellow shirts you see during the race. The game you choose is not all that important; as long as it takes your mind off negative issues, your chosen game is doing its job.
6. Set yourself a goal
There are few better ways to motivate yourself than by setting yourself a goal. Whether this goal involves beating your personal best or breaking the race down into smaller chunks, this approach should keep your motivated, and make the challenge ahead seem a lot less scary.
A 10K run is a huge challenge – even for experienced runners. But while a stringent health and training regime is crucial to your chances of successfully completing the course, the challenge ahead won’t be scary if you take steps to make the experience fun.
Have you ever considered setting a goal to complete a fitness race?