By Rob Smith
After all the major running events got cancelled this year, people are now looking to get their 'race-day fix' before the end of 2020.
Several events have been rescheduled to virtual events, such as the London Marathon which now takes place on Sunday 4th of October, and allows you to run it wherever you are, using your GPS watch or smartphone to track your time!
If you are looking to make some progress with your running before the end of the year, there is a rule that runners must abide by...
Never increase your weekly mileage by more than 10%.
It can be all too tempting, when the wind is blowing in your hair on a sunny Autumn day, to think 'I'm feeling good, I can run all day!'.
Say you've been running 15 miles a week fairly consistently, and instead of completing the third 5-mile run you had scheduled for this week, you keep going for 10 miles. Oh, and you also managed to fit in an extra 5 miles yesterday. Suddenly your weekly milage has jumped from the usual 15 miles to 25 miles, a 67% increase in just a week.
Well, your body doesn't like you getting carried away, and lo and behold your knee starts playing up...you spend the next few weeks googling 'runner's knee cure' and become increasingly frustrated you are falling behind. You are forced to stop running for a while, and eventually start again, only this time gradually!
Almost all running injuries are 'overuse' injuries, meaning runners are taking on too much distance before their bodies have fully adapted to handle the increased stress. Your body adapts to stress gradually, which means your training needs to gradually increase as well.
Stick to this rule, and you will maximise your chances of having consistent progress, week by week. Trust me, from the experience of breaking this rule multiple times, it never pays off!
If you would like to kick start your training with a step by step 3 week 5km running plan, download it here! Alternatively, the 'Couch to 5km' NHS app, is a fantastic way to gradually build-up your distance if you are very new to running.