Lay down strong running roots
Improving as a runner is not an overnight process, it takes time to develop a strong foundation and ultimately elevate your overall level.
Whether you are building up to a marathon, or are a new or experienced runner, it is important to cement the foundations with steady mileage growth, consistency and injury-free, continuous weeks of running.
Seasoned runners do however build up a tolerance to high volume work through years and years of running, in which their bodies learn to adapt to varying workloads – especially an increase in output during peak training weeks.
However, for most runners – training programmes begin at a low level, where stride-by-stride, a stronger aerobic fitness base is constructed.
Typically, a runner – starting from scratch and heading towards a marathon – should be able to build a base level of endurance between six weeks and three months. (Our first-time runner’s guide to marathon training provides more insight, here.)
Once you have formed a grounding and tolerance to the demand of regular running (x3 times each week at least) – and whatever your talent or future ambitions – it is necessary to try and sustain your new-found workload through regular strength and conditioning, recovery and good nutrition – helping to avoid injury in the process.
This is the key to maintaining harmonious running and a platform in which you can run from frequently. Indeed, the same rule can be applied even if your volume dips from time to time with motivation factors and other circumstances.
Sustaining that equilibrium shouldn’t be viewed as a lack of progress, rather – instead, plenty of progress. Beginning from scratch time and time again is difficult but by ticking over with an efficient running base, you can kick-start your running from 50 to 60 per cent each time.