“In the race for success, speed is less important than stamina” -B.C Forbes
Ever found yourself excessively exhausted after a 10-minute run? This probably means that you a have very low stamina.
Stamina is the energy (physical and mental) required to do a tiring activity for a long period of time. Stamina is concerned with how long one can keep up with an activity and has no reflection on a person’s physical strength. It is very activity-specific and the methods used to improve stamina in one activity are different from the methods used for another. Stamina not only depends on your workout or exercise routines, your eating habits play an important role as well. If you’re someone who wants to run a marathon or simply increase the distance you can run, here are a few tricks which will help you-
- Run, run and run some more!
The first way to increase and improve your running stamina is simply by running more often. You should make it a point to run more consistently and try fitting in some additional workouts here and there as well. You don’t have to run long distances every day, shorter distances with periodic intervals work well too. The more you run the more your body gets accustomed to the running movement and the easier running gets. Thus, running multiple times a week for multiple weeks increase stamina considerably.
- Interval Running
One of the best ways to improve your stamina would be by running and walking at equal intervals. Running is usually done for shorter distances at a quicker pace followed by walking and this is repeated over and over again. Over time, the duration of these intervals could be increased by 10 seconds. This not only helps with muscle strengthening but also increases lung capacity. It helps you run long distances without feeling too tired and can also help you understand how far you can go.
- Slow and Steady Increase
Doing the same thing over and over again will not give you the results that you are looking for. It is very important that you make small but consistent changes in your workout. Once you slowly start getting comfortable with your distance and pace it’s time to increase it. Slowly increasing the distance to be covered by around 10% helps you achieve smaller goals before you reach your main goal. It is not too overwhelming, helps prevent injury and improves lung capacity slowly.
- Warm Ups & Strength Exercises
We often neglect warmups, however, a great deal of our running form depends on our warmups. It is very important to stretch the body before and after a workout as it prevents the muscles from becoming stiff. Strength training exercises such as squats, lunges, pull ups and push ups etc. are also very important as it strengthens the core, thighs and other parts of the body. Various weight lifting and resistance band exercises also tone the body.
- Uphill Running
Another method that could be used to improve stamina would be to practice uphill running. This could be on an inclined platform. It helps build endurance and improve speed on a less inclined plane. This strengthens and builds the hamstrings, quads, core and calves.
- Eat Healthy and Get Enough Sleep
Eating healthy is very important. Green leafy vegetables, healthy fats, proteins and nuts should be consumed. Always try avoiding energy drinks along with fatty, sugary and fried foods. Focus on carbs. If you eat healthy you will stay healthy. It is also very important that you get 6-8hours of sleep to ensure that the body gets time to heal and repair the sore muscles.
Building stamina requires a certain amount of time and hard work. Following the above will show some sort of improvement in your stamina and will make long distance running easier.