How To Run Long Distance

Long-distance running is a whole different animal to short sprinting, and it's no secret that it can really kick our butts. Whether it's fatigue, pain, or mental obstacles, there are a number of factors that make long runs seriously challenging. 

Improving our abilities to go longer and faster is a gradual process that takes time, focus, and commitment, but it's something we all are capable of achieving. 

Here are some of the best tips you can follow to enhance your long-distance running:

Prepare For Your Runs

Getting your body and mind right for a run is the first step. As legendary Arkansas Razorbacks track and field coach John McDonnell would say, "The hardest part about running is lacing up your shoes."

Being prepared for a run is crucial to your success, and having the right attitude is essential. What aids a positive attitude is having a body that's primed and ready to go for a good run. If your body isn't feeling well, your mind will have a tougher time getting up for the challenge. 

So how can you get your body right?

A good night's rest is important, regardless of what time you run the following day. Getting some good sleep will allow your muscles and joints to be well-recovered and geared up for a long day ahead. Poor sleep can cause discomfort and pain while you run, as your body will likely be dealing with a good amount of soreness. 

Hydrating is another key factor in preparing for a run. As with every sport, hydration plays a huge role in the functionality of your mind and body. It's wise to stay hydrated all week -- a gallon of water a day is ideal -- and getting a bunch of water in the day before is a necessity. What you want to avoid is cramming a bunch of fluids in just before you run. This will make your stomach feel heavy, and all that sloshing around is going to lead to quite an uncomfortable run. 

The last thing to focus on before you run is getting in a nice warmup. Some active mobility and dynamic stretching will fire up your muscles and joints to gear them up for a heavy workload. 

Increase Your Distance Gradually

No matter how much you're used to running, whether it's three miles at a time, 10 miles at a time, or not at all, you'll want to increase your distances slowly but steadily. If you're just starting out, take it easy and go no longer than just a mile or so at a time in the beginning. As you get more comfortable, expand the mileage bit by bit until you find yourself running four, even five miles at a time. 

Runners that are used to going as long as 10 miles per run should also grow their distance at an easy pace. There is no sense in jumping to a marathon-level run soon after you do a 10-mile run. Work your way up gradually and the body will respond much better. 

Mind Over Matter

Long runs are taxing on the body, but they can also weigh a toll on the mind. Boredom can certainly be a factor, but oftentimes it's pain that causes us to stop going. Try to train your mind to fight through the stimuli that tell you that you can't go any further. Your body is a remarkable thing and it will almost always have at least another 10 percent in the tank.

Use some mental tricks to distract your mind from the pain. Something like keeping count of the number of dogs you see on the trail, or how many red cars you run past. Having a motto or a mantra can help too, like, "Pain is just weakness leaving the body." 

Visualizing yourself in a race can help motivate you to finish as well, or pumping yourself up with a pep talk. If you really want to distract yourself from the run, try having an inner dialogue with yourself about what you plan to do after the run!

Don't Quit!

Hopefully these three tips help you to become the runner you want to be, but they'll all be for naught if you don't stick with your running! Whether you feel up for it or not, try and motivate yourself to get out there and get better. 

You never regret a workout that you finish!

A Tell-All Guide To Shin Splints

Plain and simple: shin splints are the worst! Whether you’ve had them yourself or you know someone who has, it is a pain that is not easily forgotten. It’s been almost 10 years since I’ve had them myself, but you bet I still remember how hard it was to move around. That being said, there are easy ways to reduce the symptoms and help treat shin splints to get you back in full recovery mode. 

So What Is Cross-Training?

Cross-training is an effective way for every athlete, regardless of their primary sport, to increase and maintain fitness levels, while avoiding the negative impacts of overtraining. There are various types of cross-training that athletes can participate in, which provide an array of benefits, including increased endurance, greater flexibility, and increased power and strength. 

3 Excellent Ankle-Strengthening Exercises For Runners

The strength and flexibility of our ankles is a key component to the way we run, and as anyone who's rolled one knows, pain in the ankle can make running -- or even walking -- a nightmare. While rehabbing is a great way to repair damaged tendons, ligaments, and muscles in your lower leg and foot, staying ahead of the curve and strengthening your ankles when they're healthy is the best way to stay injury-free. 

Insertional Achilles Tendonitis: Symptoms, Causes, Treatments

The strongest tendon in our bodies, the Achilles tendon, is also one of the most susceptible to injury. Because it bears an extraordinary amount of weight when we walk, run, jump, and land, the Achilles gets put under immense strain.

400m World Champ Salwa Eid Naser Suspended For Whereabouts Failures


Unlock this video, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

Bahrain’s Salwa Eid Naser, the 2019 400m world champion and the third-fastest woman of all-time, has been provisionally suspended by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) for whereabouts failures.

We Stand With You

The events of the last week have been tremendously painful to us all.

Brown Cuts Men's Track & Field/XC

Brown University is cutting men’s track and field and cross country along with nine other varsity sports at the school, the school announced on Thursday as part of their roll out of The Excellence in Brown Athletics Initiative.

2020 Boston Marathon Canceled

For the first time in its 124 year history, the Boston Marathon has been canceled as a result of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

David Rudisha Undergoes Surgery After Breaking Ankle

(c) 2020 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved

Appalachian State Cuts Men's Indoor Track And Field

Appalachian State is dropping men’s indoor track and field, the latest program to make cuts to collegiate running programs since the COVID-19 pandemic began.