10+ Proactive Running Tips

Before you go for a long run, or start the big race, there are a number of preventive steps you can take to make your run, and your post-run, more enjoyable. Not surprisingly there are other tips I will share with you for during the run and after finishing your run as well. At the very bottom is my super-secret tip.


Leading Up To The Run – Training Runs

  • Do not increase your mileage more than 10 percent per week.
  • Do not run two hard days back-to-back. (I know, I know, for those of you who are super-competitive, this is hard)
  • Log your mileage for your legs and your running shoes.
  • Pay attention to your running gait. Minimize jarring impact but stepping lightly and decreasing the jarring impacts that could lead to injury.
  • Trim back your training by at least 30 percent every 4th week to allow your body to recover and get ready for the run.
  • If you are prone to shin splints, backaches and lower leg pain and the like, try running softer trails (or on the grass next to the sidewalk) for your training runs and save the asphalt or cement for race day.
  • Ice aches and pains immediately. Read my article on when to ice and when to heat.
  • Trim those toenails or your running shoes will do it for you.
  • Eating the right foods leading up to your your race is very important.  Here is a video on what to eat.


Right Before The Run – Before The Whistle Sounds

  • Get those body parts lubricated (no, we are not talking about alcohol). Use Vaseline (or spend a bit more for BodyGlide) and liberally apply wherever/whatever things rub. The lubricants will help prevent blisters and skin chafing. Body parts to include: inner thigh, toes, heels, under your arms (especially where your shirt rubs against skin).
  • Note any other place wear your clothing has a seam and lube well.
  • Be sure to remember your nipples (men and women). Optionally, you can use a Band-Aid over the sensitive skin. Try and stay away from the Little Mermaid Band-Aids in your kids bathroom – it makes it hard to look like a tough guy – or gal. (Bonus tip, if you are a male runner trying to impress any female runners, stay away from the Star Wars Band-Aids)
  • Pay attention to your form. The race is forward, not side-to-side. Try to run lightly to minimize impact that could lead to injury.
  • If you carry a “runner’s kit,” don’t forget water and a hat. Add bug spray and suntan lotion as needed.


Right After The Run

  • Neosporin is handy to have immediately after your run (nobody likes to see blisters oozing).
  • Ice aches and pains immediately. Did I mention that you should read my article on when to ice and when to heat.
  • Get out of wet or damp clothes, including socks. It pays to have a post-run clothing kit ready to go, including a sweat towel.
  • Stretch and do your normal cool down program right away. A typical cool down video is below.


Super Secret Running Tip

Some runners have a playlist on their MP3 player. One trick you can use for the last mile (whatever distance) is to always play the same music set when you are running the fastest. And, during the race when you need your “kick” music, just switch to that playlist. At the very bottom of the page, I put on one of my favorite “kick” songs.

Yes, below is my secret “kick” music weapon. I have overcome many a runner in my age group due to this little tune…