I was browsing Complete Running Network and came across some useful tips and advice which are relevant to me now...
1. Always try to balance running with the people you love by making a schedule that involves and is considerate of everyone.
2. Don’t neglect and irritate your family and friends by spending all your time running and talking about running.
3. Remember that you will have plateaus in your progress and tough days along the way.
4. Accept and appreciate the fact that not every single run can be a good one.
5. Be prepared to remove the words “can’t” and “never” from your vocabulary.
6. Do not compare yourself to others. Run within yourself and for yourself first.
7. Don’t expect every run to be better than the last one; some of them will hurt.
8. Don’t think too much about it or you won’t do it.
9. Even a bad run is better then no run at all.
10. Each pound you lose makes running a little easier.
11. On long runs eat something every hour—whether you feel like it or not (should I practice this? maybe give it a try).
12. To aid recovery the most crucial time to eat and drink is in the hour immediately after you run.
13. Hydrate. Make it a habit to drink water throughout the day (very often forgotten).
14. Do not increase your mileage more than 10 percent per week.
15. Log your mileage for your legs and your Shoes. Too much on either will cause you injury.
16. Do not run two hard days back-to-back.
17. Ice aches and pains immediately.
18. Pay attention to your form. Try to run lightly to minimize impact that could lead to injury.
19. Don’t stretch before a run. Warm up by walking briskly or jogging slowly for several minutes (this works for me, stretching before a run has resulted in muscle pulls during the run).
20. Do not use the hot tub after a race. It will increase inflammation and hinder healing (this I presume includes hot showers).
21. Race day is not the day to try new shoes, eat new foods, or wear brand new clothing (learnt the hard way!).
22. If you conserve your energy during the first half of a race, you can finish strong.
23. Try shoes on in the afternoon when your feet are bigger (will do this when buying my new pair).
24. No amount of money spent on gadget training programs or funny food can substitute for minutes, hours, days and weeks on the road.
25. Do speedwork after you develop an endurance base.
26. Practice running harder in the last half of your runs.
27. Do abdominal breathing to get rid of side cramps or “stitches.”
28. If you can’t find the time to run, take your running gear to work (must start this practice again since I have a shower in the office)
29. Forgive yourself. Over-ambitious goals usually lead to frustration and giving up on your fitness plan. If you miss a goal or milestone let it go and focus on the next opportunity to get it.
30. Mix-up your training plan. Make sure your training plan is not too heavily focused on one thing. No matter what level of runner you are your training plan should include four essential elements: endurance speed rest cross-training.
So now let see how I can use these tips to work towards a good race in Penang!