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How to prepare for your 5k fun run!

Yes, you need to prepare well for the short sprints too.

Written by Debjani Arora |Published : December 14, 2017 5:04 PM IST

Most people think if you signed up for a fun 5K run you don t need to prepare for it because as the name suggests it is a fun run and the distance isn t too much to cover. But if you don t prepare yourself well for the short sprint you might end up with a lot of problems a sprain, twist or muscle pain that could be difficult to deal later. So, even if you are not participating in a half or full marathon but a 5K run be serious with your preparations. We spoke to Mr Rahul Gomes, Managing Director and Lead COLOR RUNNER, known as the happiest 5K run to be organized across 10 cities in India. Here are some health test you should go for before planning to run a marathon.

The Color Run is a unique race that celebrates healthiness, happiness, and individuality. Unlike other runs, winning is not the objective. The Color Run lays emphasis on the spirit of participation and the celebration of life, which is why The Color Run course is dotted with fun activities, a spirit of joie de vivre and finishes in a bang with music and dance!

The right time to train for a 5k race is at least a month and a half ahead of the run. Serious runners train throughout the year, but it s never too late to start. A good tip here is to join a training group. Barring that, one can team up with a buddy. The reason is motivation each runner is expected to make sure that the other stay the course, he says.

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Here he gives us tips on how to prepare for a 5K run

Get the right shoes: First things first. You cannot run with the proper gear. Wearing the right running shoes is important. Running shoes are meant to give adequate support to the arch and stride. Buy shoes in the evening when the feet are swollen. Choose seamless socks and make sure these are moisture absorbent to keep the feet dry. Clothes should also be comfortable. Here are more tips on how to choose the right running shoes.

Get a plan: To prepare don t just start to run mindlessly. Have a plan in place, talk to a trainer or get enrolled to prepare for it with a runners group. A good plan schedule starts slow and then moves towards a more serious run. Time and days are specified. A three-day-a-week schedule of 20 minutes run makes for a good start the first week. The time is increased each week as the body gets used to the schedule. The days should be paced across the week so that there is never a long gap between two training days.

Follow a pre-run schedule: In other words, it means don t skip warm-up. Every exercise program starts with a warm-up. It stretches the body and gets the blood flowing. A few stretching exercises, walking lunges and straight leg kicks will stretch those hamstring muscles. It also keeps the body flexible and less prone to injury.

Getting started: Start slowly and steadily. Keep running at a comfortable pace. Try the talk test if one can run without gasping and talk at the same time, this is the right pace. If one finds oneself gasping, slow down. Too many beginners make the mistake of running too fast and then become too exhausted to continue after the first 10 minutes. If running seems too tough, start with a brisk walk with a small jog in between. Then a longer jog and eventually, a slow run.

Not speed but time should be your focus: Do not focus on the speed or distance in the beginning. Instead, focus on the time. The body will slowly accustom itself to running that distance and will be ready for more. So, increase both the time and distance slowly. It is important for beginners to focus on increasing the distance rather than speeding up. It is better to finish the race comfortably, rather than collapsing exhausted before the finish line.

Don t forget post-run stretch: Running makes the muscles tight, opening them to tear and injury. The only way to avoid this is by finishing with a proper stretching routine. A vigorous run should end with a brisk walk of 5 minutes, followed by a stretching routine.

Eat right: Running depletes the body s glycogen stores. So, drink glucose water every 30 minutes. The body is fuelled by food and makes it work right, eating the right food is important. Eat a balanced meal during training. A week before the run, load your body with a carbohydrate-rich diet, avoiding fats, alcohol and smoking. Here are few diet tips for marathon runners.

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