I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Never did I think that I would actually run a half marathon. Growing up as a sprinter and jumper, long distance running was never on my to-do list. In fact, it wasn’t until I was at university that I ran the furthest that I’d ever run- 5km! Looking back now, oh how far I’ve come.
Running has always been a huge part of my training but I would always stick to shorter runs and sprints to help keep my mind and body healthy. When I committed myself to The Big Half, this had to change. Post-race day, I’m still incorporating longer runs into my training and I actually feel great for it. There’s something so rewarding about heading out for a long run- it clears your mind as well as improves overall fitness, not to mention physical changes. My body now feels leaner and I’ve noticed a huge difference in my waist size- I would bloat so easily before but not so much now. Obviously, it’s also boosted my appetite. I notice on run days that I just can’t stop eating! However, my body needs the extra energy, so I have absolutely no problem just to go with it..!
It can be difficult to keep up with training post-event. For one, there’s no real target anymore, as before you were working so hard towards the race. My biggest tip is to note the positive differences that you felt when training for race day and keep reminding yourself of how good you felt. If you did have any issues with training (I found that my knees would hurt when I was running in the cold) then you now don’t have to train quite so intensely so can avoid any niches and glitches from occurring. Even if you set a goal of one run per week amongst your usual training- the gym, fitness classes, swimming, etc.- then you will still reap the benefits of running.
A big thing for me is the kit that I choose to run in. I ran the Half Marathon head-to-toe in New Balance and choose to wear New Balance for my training too. When it comes to performance, I’ve found that my New Balance trainers and clothing never let me down, which might explain why they’ve been chosen to sponsor the London Marathon this year, which of course is this weekend!
If I’ve learnt anything from running the Half Marathon, it’s that I can achieve anything that I put my mind to. Who knows what could be in store next…
All images shot by Rebecca Naen.