We’ve put together some top tips from our experts to stay on track:
1. Just keep running
However, running solo can be tricky if you’re used to the accountability of training with your local running group, parkrun or running coach.
Now’s a great time to enlist the help of an app to keep motivation levels up and ASICS Runkeeper is the one for the job. It tracks your runs with GPS, allows you to push yourself with virtual running challenges and gives you a breakdown of key stats and best of all, it’s free!
For those wanting to take their training to the next level, a premium upgrade will allow you to access training plans tailored to your ability and detailed insights on your progress.
2. Look after your mental health
“Sure there may be some restrictions placed on how much face-to-face contact you can have with people at the moment, but this does not mean that social support has to be ignored – social distancing is not social isolation,” he says.
Luke suggests we pick up the phone and give our friends and family a call or use a video calling app. There are many ways we can get creative to keep our levels of social interaction up, so why not share running stories at a virtual pizza night with friends or gather the family together with a board game via video chat?
Luke also suggests it’s more important than ever that we limit our screen time and news time. Being informed is important during a pandemic but avoid watching too much rolling news content to promote a positive mindset.
“Stick to the facts and rely on information provided by scientific sources to maintain true perspective and manage your feelings,” he says.
3. Get plenty of rest
Exercise physiotherapist Brad Beer says the temptation to do more to get more is often intoxicating for runners and many runners are literally ‘addicted’ to the positive feelings that running produces.
It’s common to experience withdrawal signs from not running due to not experiencing the hit of endorphins and other happy hormones such as serotonin.
Brad recommends, “rest can be taken in the form of a complete rest day, a rest or recovery session or some easy weeks of a lighter training load.”
4. Eat well
Southern Cross University nutrition expert Holly Muggleston advises we focus on three areas to keep on track: carbohydrate intake, protein for muscle development and hydration.
Holly says, “if you’re opting for longer and more intense runs right now, you will require more carbohydrate–rich foods including wholegrains such as bread, cereal, rice and pasta; starchy vegetables such as potatoes, sweet potatoes and legumes; fruit; and dairy foods.”
Protein-containing foods are required to repair any muscle damage and to build muscle after training. Protein foods include meat, chicken, fish, eggs, dairy, legumes (tofu, lentils, chickpeas) and nuts.
Lastly, as the weather cools down in the southern hemisphere, make sure you are drinking adequate fluids to avoid dehydration. If you’re replacing fluid with water, eat a snack or meal at the same time as this will also provide lost electrolytes.
5. Stay strong
A well-rounded fitness programme must include variety and challenge different muscle groups – this can be trickier than ever right now. Never fear! The ASICS Studio fitness app gives you unlimited access to audio circuit workouts for strength training and cardio and is guaranteed to get your heart rate up. You can also choose workouts to target particular muscle groups or address weak points, and training programmes will track your weekly progress towards your goals.