A New Season

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By John Cooper

Nearly three weeks into January and approximately 137 days left till Comrades, I’m personally feeling a little anxious. 19 weeks goes by very quickly. All those butterflies in my stomach surface when I think about all the training to be done – the long runs, time trials and quality sessions.

On the other hand is the balance between staying healthy and uninjured whilst dealing with the daily challenges of life. There will also be some occasional flack from family and friends when they realise you have devoted at least six months of your life to achieving this goal.

A few constant reminders I have learned over the years include planning, diet and consistency.

By now you should have a goal plan i.e. the time you would like to achieve on race day. This should link directly to your training programme.

Eat healthy and wash hands constantly. This will help keep the dreaded lurgies away.

Remember NOT to train if you are sick – this can seriously damage your heart forever.

Consistency. The old adage of ‘what you put in – you will get out’ applies.

Do the training and you will be rewarded with the results. If your programme says ‘easy’, it means ‘easy’. Long, enjoyable, social runs form the basis of your training. Hammer every run and you will get injured.

Speaking of rewards, cherish those rest days and savour that beer after a long run, but remember to rehydrate with the correct fluids first.

Runners are social creatures and love the banter, tech and training talk that comes with the territory.

Last word for this post is ‘visualise’ to keep motivated. Picture yourself entering the stadium with the finish line in view as thousands have done before.

All the anxiety that you feel leading up to the day and at the start will vanish, giving way to tears of joy.


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