8 Stages of Training For A Race When You Are Not A Runner
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8 Stages of Training For A Race When You Are Not A Runner

How to train for a race when you are not a runner: run away from your responsibilities by actually running. Who knew?

8 Stages of Training For A Race When You Are Not A Runner
Christine Breton

I recently went through the process of training for a race with one of my siblings; an 8k to be exact (for those of you who don't speak kilometers, that's about 5 miles). Now I know that's not that long of a distance, but let me make something very clear... I am not a runner! So, training for any sort of distance running was quite difficult. These are the 8 stages of training for a race that I experienced, and I am sure many of you have been through as well.

The stages of training and preparing for a "fun" race when you are NOT a runner:

1) The Pre-Preparation.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F07%2F15%2F636042016308940400697762280_wGgCAGZ.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=823&h=7abe5604ef9b2dbfc3b54f8b5257b20f1fbee1c55de819ba474be1dd99f7b112&size=980x&c=2525265722 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F07%252F15%252F636042016308940400697762280_wGgCAGZ.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D823%26h%3D7abe5604ef9b2dbfc3b54f8b5257b20f1fbee1c55de819ba474be1dd99f7b112%26size%3D980x%26c%3D2525265722%22%7D" expand=1]

First thing's first: you have to actually sign up for the race. If you're anything like me, you like to run a race or two during the summer just to have some fun with your friends, stay in shape and maybe check it off your bucket list. No matter what the reason, first thing you have to do is actually sign up for the race and that means one thing: commitment that you're actually going to run.

2) Gearing up for the run... literally.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F07%2F15%2F6360420277092065021455540938_ba53d4211dc622e0-tangting_nike-women-gif_024.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=808&h=2f01540d3a16e095f4811da88997007b41c8c2b43e4b8704465c5c75438f0b20&size=980x&c=3441876496 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F07%252F15%252F6360420277092065021455540938_ba53d4211dc622e0-tangting_nike-women-gif_024.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D808%26h%3D2f01540d3a16e095f4811da88997007b41c8c2b43e4b8704465c5c75438f0b20%26size%3D980x%26c%3D3441876496%22%7D" expand=1]

Time to go shopping! Good running shoes and breathable socks? Check. Comfy sweat-wicking t-shirt? Check. Shorts and spandex long enough that my thighs won't chafe? Check. Running band and headphones that won't fall off when I run? Check. An app that will kick my butt during the run, but also tell me how much ice cream I can eat later? Check! (I recommend MapMyRun™ or Record™ by Under Armour)

3) Now the actually preparation: running.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F07%2F15%2F6360420258818139421946975606_powerpuff-blossom-running-gif.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=8&h=155622ae23c22f1e17d8407839c1da482376ab82f2bd15f6b30dae2ca882f07e&size=980x&c=222487771 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F07%252F15%252F6360420258818139421946975606_powerpuff-blossom-running-gif.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D8%26h%3D155622ae23c22f1e17d8407839c1da482376ab82f2bd15f6b30dae2ca882f07e%26size%3D980x%26c%3D222487771%22%7D" expand=1]

This is definitely the hardest part of training. You have to run almost every day and each time you run increase your distance little by little. There is some truth to the fact that your body has a threshold, and once you get over that threshold you can run for miles. The hard part is actually making it past the point of no return without ending up on the ground six blocks from home wheezing.

4) Continuous commitment and constant tired muscles!

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F07%2F15%2F636042036244453509880307688_everything-hurts-running-is-impossible-parks-and-recreation-gif.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=200&h=612314ab70e4a97d2dd815c13701bde245a9f1c325733d683a3c1e730c08dc75&size=980x&c=1670141978 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F07%252F15%252F636042036244453509880307688_everything-hurts-running-is-impossible-parks-and-recreation-gif.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D200%26h%3D612314ab70e4a97d2dd815c13701bde245a9f1c325733d683a3c1e730c08dc75%26size%3D980x%26c%3D1670141978%22%7D" expand=1]

I don't know why college runners do this to themselves. Much like Andy, I agree that running is impossible and so hard... seriously, why is it so hard?!?! At this stage of the preparation process you're thinking maybe it's time to give up and just accept that the $60 registration fee is gone. But, you find the will to get up and go for another run tomorrow and the next day and the next day. Do it for the free t-shirt, right?

5) Accomplishing your milage goal.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F07%2F15%2F6360420398951551021157313830_giphy.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=108&h=8f275da1b8a71e48c0c17f46f327da66034c4ebfd7eed00a7d7591330c0ca495&size=980x&c=2822288836 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F07%252F15%252F6360420398951551021157313830_giphy.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D108%26h%3D8f275da1b8a71e48c0c17f46f327da66034c4ebfd7eed00a7d7591330c0ca495%26size%3D980x%26c%3D2822288836%22%7D" expand=1]

Just when you thought you couldn't possibly run another minute, when your legs were giving out and your lungs felt like they were collapsing, when you were ready to accept the fact that there is no way you can run this long of a distance.... you reach your milage goal! Now you know for sure that you can run that long. It may be absolutely miserable, there will definitely be tears (and vomit), but you can do it!

6) The night before the race.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F07%2F15%2F636042051946448913-1696740570_e14980bb9c7d561a23c3f826253296c9.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=911&h=4d1d5b1bb188a3b16c15884d780bd352b9194ee12863edb8a6aeccca1d2da3ba&size=980x&c=3975108314 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F07%252F15%252F636042051946448913-1696740570_e14980bb9c7d561a23c3f826253296c9.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D911%26h%3D4d1d5b1bb188a3b16c15884d780bd352b9194ee12863edb8a6aeccca1d2da3ba%26size%3D980x%26c%3D3975108314%22%7D" expand=1]

Now that you have sufficiently prepared (or, if you're anything like me, you're absolutely not prepared at all) for the big race tomorrow all you need is spaghetti for dinner, lots of water and a good nights sleep. You made a bomb playlist that you're confident is gonna push you to the end and you're a little nervous, but you're confident tomorrow is going to be fun! After all, this what is what you have been working your butt off for.


[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F07%2F15%2F636042056572999851-303387562_Michelle-Jenneke-Dance-Before-Race.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=329&h=766e351d87df379b50bcae7501f1f2ded8ea9fee5b69109061e79d1cbb628b65&size=980x&c=1121526578 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F07%252F15%252F636042056572999851-303387562_Michelle-Jenneke-Dance-Before-Race.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D329%26h%3D766e351d87df379b50bcae7501f1f2ded8ea9fee5b69109061e79d1cbb628b65%26size%3D980x%26c%3D1121526578%22%7D" expand=1]

FINALLY the day is here! You're pumped up and ready to go. You've had your coffee, a light breakfast, a glass of water and a few good stretches. You are definitely ready to go! The atmosphere is loud and exciting, and everyone looks as ready as you are to run this race. Now... on your mark... get set... RUN!

8) You made it to the finish line, collapsed and feel amazing for actually making it to the end.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F07%2F15%2F6360420656745009321340578496_anigif_enhanced-16599-1401443918-10.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=1014&h=ab1667f4c3059b6914cd758ec06da7ad0fa2f13a6ebfdfad1d1a4b710ae36e9c&size=980x&c=1527783167 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F07%252F15%252F6360420656745009321340578496_anigif_enhanced-16599-1401443918-10.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D1014%26h%3Dab1667f4c3059b6914cd758ec06da7ad0fa2f13a6ebfdfad1d1a4b710ae36e9c%26size%3D980x%26c%3D1527783167%22%7D" expand=1]

At mile one you running well and feeling confident. At mile three you started to cramp up a bit, but hey, there's a water stop coming up soon so you can get a refreshment soon. At mile five you lost feeling in your legs and there were a few tears shed. At the finish line you realized you sprinted the last half mile so you can't feel your lungs, your face or your legs. But, you finished! And you are soooooooo happy to finally get some ice for your legs, that free t-shirt and *BONUS* free food!

Well, all the pain, blood, sweat and tears were worth it. Now, you are able to say you ran an official race and looked good doing it... well, maybe. Who really looks attractive when they're running anyway?

Good luck training for the race! Go get 'em, tiger!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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