Tis the season for picnics, boating…and summer races! After training all winter, runners took to the streets of Indianapolis last Saturday for the 35th running of the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini Marathon.
As a runner, I get excited for spring, as it signifies the beginning of race season. Race day brings a lot of excitement—and some nerves. However, a well-planned training regimen can calm those nerves and give you an extra boost of confidence as you step up to the starting line.
What tools are in my training arsenal? First and foremost, a persistent running schedule and strength training routine form the backbone of this training. I’ve found that lifting weights helps me run longer and faster and gives me more energy on race day.
Sound nutrition is another vital component to staying healthy. In addition to eating right, it’s essential to stay hydrated! Chocolate milk is one of my ‘tried and true’ methods of replenishing my body after a hard run.
Decades of studies show that drinking milk increases bone density and overall lean muscle. Plus, drinking milk is one of the easiest and most efficient ways to increase calcium and vitamin D. No other sports beverage compares to this nutrition powerhouse. This has been an essential part of my routine ever since my high school cross country days and continues to keep me in top racing form throughout my current marathon training (I’m running the Seattle Marathon in November!).
Don’t forget to get a good night’s rest! My high school cross country coach always told us to get a lot of sleep two nights before the race since the excitement of race day may keep us up the night before. She was right. Stretching is also an important component and should not be overlooked.
I wish all my fellow runners the best of luck this race season. After crossing the finish line, I hope you will be thinking the same thing I do …where’s the chocolate milk?