Being fit is healthy.
Today, it is fashionable to work out, and for good reason too. Being physically fit keeps you mentally alert, helps you sleep better, and improves your overall productivity. But, what is the best way of keeping fit – have you ever wondered?
Your body needs a combination of three things for optimum fitness – a good cardiovascular system, efficient CNS (Central Nervous System), and a healthy diet.
Unfortunately, most of us end up focussing on only one or two of these aspects, failing to keep pace with our fitness goals. But now, Mobiefit brings fitness into your pocket with the Mobiefit RUN app, your personal trainer on your smartphone, featuring holistic training programs, complete with a diet plan and nutrition kit to help you achieve your running goals.
Breaking Down your Run
Arguably, running is one of the most popular exercises people take up to get themselves in shape. And why not? It is the most natural form of exercise and requires no specialized equipment or place. In fact, anybody can run.
But, training for a race is much more than just sporting your shoes and surging into the open. Every runner would agree that there are specific rules and techniques which are essential to prevent injury and build endurance while running. For example, maintaining the right posture while running improves your speed and minimizes the risk of injuries. Thus, to power your run, not only must you vary your workouts but also master the perfect running form.
Marathon runners who are committed to their running workouts, know the importance of every exercise.Usually, a typical running session consists of a long continuous run, speckled with sessions fartleks, tempo runs, strength training, interval runs, and recovery runs – all depending on your progress as a runner. Though expert runners are well-versed with these terminologies and their understanding, many a new runner is usually left high and dry. To get you started here’s a breakdown of the different types of running:
1. Base Runs or Continuous Runs
Base runs are moderate length runs that are meant to be run at your natural pace. These runs form a significant part of any training programme, as you can do them often to improve your endurance and aerobic capacity to prepare yourself for more challenging types of running.
Running a base run is very simple. All you need to do is start running at a comfortable pace and maintain the same pace for as long as you can, in a continuous stretch.
Benefits of undertaking continuous runs:
- Improved aerobic capacity at low fatigue
- Better stamina
- Improved running form
Fartlek means ‘speed play’ in Swedish. A straightforward form of exercise developed in 1937 by the Swedish coach Gösta Holmér, a fartlek is nothing but a period of fast running mixed with periods of slower running. The main advantage of running fartlek is that it helps build endurance. When you are training at the same speed, you can quickly hit a plateau. By varying the speed, you will build stamina, pushing yourself out of the comfort zone.
However, fartlek is different from an interval run. A fartlek workout is unstructured as compared to an interval run. For example, in a fartlek, you may push yourself to a high-intensity run until the next checkpoint, and then slow down the pace until you feel ready to surge again. This is unlike an interval run where you must maintain the intensity for a designated period.
Benefits of running fartlek:
- Add fun to your routine with less structured interval training
- Play with speed, by pushing your body into short surges
- Avoid injuries due to repetitive motion
- Improve speed and stamina
- Build mental strength
An example could be a 5-mile run at your natural pace interspersed with seven to ten spurts of 30 seconds to a minute, followed by recovery.
3. Tempo runs
A tempo run is also known as a threshold run. In a tempo workout, you run at a level just outside your comfort zone for a sustained period between the warm up and the cool down. The pace for your threshold run is one where you can’t make a conversation but can speak in broken words comfortably. During tempo runs, as you maintain a sustained speed for the entire duration, lactic acid is released into the muscles that eventually leads to fatigue. However, with more training, you push the lactate threshold of your body, allowing you to run faster with less effort eventually.
Benefits of tempo run:
- Increase your sustained speed and the time for which you can sustain that speed
- Torch calories
- Improve focus and running efficiency
An example of this workout is a 5-mile run where you cover three miles at the fastest pace you can sustain between one mile of jogging to warm up and cool down, each.
4. Interval runs
Interval workouts are a structured mix of high and low intensity running. Here, short or long bursts of intense activities are separated by equal or slightly longer segments of jogging or walking. The difference, from a tempo run, is that you are pushing yourself out of your comfort zone during the high-intensity period, which is followed by an easy jog that prepares your body to run the next high-intensity interval. By altering the intensity, you can complete the workout without feeling completely spent, thanks to the well-planned recovery phases in between.
Benefits of running intervals:
- Better endurance
- Escalated fat burning
- Mind-body coordination
- Improved running economy
An example of an interval workout could be running for two minutes at high intensity (after warm up), followed by two minutes of walking or easy jogging to normalize your breath, followed by another high-intensity interval and so on.
5. Recovery Run
Recovery runs are easy, slow-paced workouts to help you add mileage to your high-intensity workouts without pressuring the body. Take it as slow as you like during the recovery period to retrieve your body between high-intensity intervals or tempo runs to complete your workout without feeling spent entirely.
6. Mastering the Running Form
To improve running economy and train for a marathon, runners must fit in several workouts into their routine. However, without proper form, this training could prove to be of little significance. Here are three tips to improve your running form, as you build the above-mentioned workouts into your running plan:
Maintain good running posture – Your posture while running determines your speed and timing. Ideally, you should run with your head straight and your shoulders low and loose. This would automatically straighten your torso and back, helping you run in an upright position, optimising your lung capacity and strengthening your stride.
To double check your posture during a run, ensure that you are looking straight ahead and continue reminding yourself to run tall, as your arms swing close to your body and your shoulders remain low and relaxed.
Better your heel strike – Don’t be surprised if you overpronate (rolling to the inside of the foot) or supinate (rolling to the outside of the foot) because most runners tend to. However, you must know that the way your feet strike the ground affects your speed as well as your ankles, knees, and hips. Fortunately, it is possible to improve your foot strike by strengthening your lower body and hips. Besides, by investing in a proper pair of shoes and consciously putting your foot down underneath your hips each time, you can effectively reduce the impact on your legs as well as the risk of injuries.
Incorporate strength training into your routine – Running benefits the respiratory and circulatory systems tremendously but does not make your muscles stronger. Thus, you must include strengthening exercises in your schedule to prepare the muscles for rigorous activity as you intensify your running training. Besides, runner-specific strength training exercises involving your body weight and compound movements (multi-joint exercises such as deadlifts and squats) reduce the risk of injury while running and build endurance.
7. Nutrition for Runners
Nutrition and hydration are central to any training program, and not only affect your overall health but also your peak running performance. Consequently, in addition to focusing on the form and technique, as a runner, you must focus on your diet to get the right nutrition to build and burn. Shwetha, celebrity dietician at Mobiefit, believes that diet and training go hand in hand in helping runners achieve their goals. Through her scientifically planned diets, she encourages the use of simple and easily-available ingredients that can be effortlessly included in your regular diet without starving yourself or compromising on the taste.
Taking the Guesswork Out of Training with the Mobiefit RUN App
Running is an endurance sport, and beginners might find it hard to run for even two minutes without a break. But, with the right training and technique, everyone can train to ‘run’ their way into fitness. Frequency, intensity, time, and variety – the right mixture of these four elements can train your mind and muscles to cover long distances without tiring out while improving your pace simultaneously.
Mobiefit considers all these aspects to create fantastic training programs and diet plans to help you achieve your fitness goals. Whether you’re a first-time runner, or someone looking to improve your performance, there is a mobiefit training program that is ideal for you.
Our starter programs for 5K, 10K, and 21K are designed to get beginners into the running habit, while we have the more rigorous Elite programs to improve pace. We also have the high-intensity Mission Marathon (42K) program to prepare you for a full marathon in less than four months. This program is ideal for regular runners and half-marathoners. It combines 61 running sessions with 43 strength training and cross training sessions. The plan, validated by expert pacers and training specialists, includes a mix of tempo, interval, and easy long runs to prepare you for your first full-marathon (42K) in just four months!
All the running programs on the Mobiefit RUN app are scientifically designed to improve overall fitness as well as your running form. To achieve this, the app adds strength training to your weekly routine to improve muscle strength and promote recovery. A scientifically planned nutrition guide by Shwetha accompanies all the Mobiefit beginner, elite, and marathon running plans. You can choose a veg or a non-veg diet, according to your preference, and follow the diet for a lifetime because it includes simple ingredients that are tasty, easy to find, and good for you!
Mobiefit has also created an interactive community of trainers, marathoners, fitness icons, and more to provide the right motivation to fitness seekers. The Mobiefit RUN app features unique content in the form of daily tips, videos, and stories from experts and runners to help you get the most out of your training program and stay motivated. You can choose to train with celebrity trainers and follow the top running experts in the country in the Running Icons section on the app to power your running with expert advice, tips, and daily motivation. The app also includes a Nutrition Watch section to educate you on the importance of a healthy diet, featuring recipes and diet tips from experts.
At Mobiefit, we are confident about the results you would reap from our programmes if you stick to the training schedule, follow the recommended diet, and stay hydrated while running. If you don’t see the promised results after the program ends, we will return your money without asking you any questions!
We would also return your money if you do achieve the promised results because we are confident our programmes work! Just share your journey with us through pictures and comparisons of your previous best timing and new best timing so that your story can inspire many others.
Don’t wait. Get Set Go to our training page and take a look at all the new Mobiefit training programs. And if you have any suggestions, do leave a comment on this post or our Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram channels!