in training.

{ Feet after my first Sunday “long run” of training }

Well, I officially have completed two weeks of my half marathon training, which adds up to be about thirty five miles ran.  As I’ve said before, I haven’t been a runner in years – I have long hated exercising and was honestly more worried about getting into the routine of running five times a week than the actual miles.  I wanted to pull together a little list of a few things I’ve learned/discovered with ten training runs under my belt:

1.  Good music is key!  I use Spotify on my iPhone and I must say, I don’t think I could run at all without music.  I prefer to listen to either gangsta rap or club music, but it’s up to you.  I usually will pick the first song to start off my run to go along with however I’m feeling that day and love the anticipation of waiting to see which song will be the one I finish up my run to.

2.  Get yourself a running app.  I’ve been using Map My Run, which I’m a big fan of – the app syncs instantly with the website and allows you to see all of your stats and track all of your workouts.  I’ve become rather fond of the nice lady who interrupts my music to tell me when I’ve finished up another mile and think it’s great motivation to hear your progress as you go along.

3.  Don’t skimp on stretching.  I used to HATE stretching and always skip out on it but let me tell you, you’ve gotta do it.  Great tip from a friend of mine, if you’re running in the morning, spend longer on your pre-run stretch, and if you’re running in the evening, stretch for longer afterwards.  I’ve found that spending 20 minutes on a long stretch before or after has cut down on my recovery and has left me feeling pretty good after each run.

4.  Marshall’s is your best friend.  Seriously, best place to find workout clothes.  I was about to fork over some serious cash for gear and then was tipped off about the wonders of Marshall’s and my life was changed.  They have a huge selection of all of the big brand names and everything is like 50% off retail.  You’re welcome.

5.  Pace yourself.  In most of early runs, I’d kill it mile one, end up super proud of myself for my time and then want to die afterwards because I was so tired and out of breath.  Slow it down and take it easy during the first mile, then see what your pace is and step it up if necessary.

So there you go, my five little learnings on my quest to run 13.1 miles at the end of June (which conveniently should have me in killer shape for summer).  Got a question or have any other advice for me?  Let’s chat!