On the right track

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On the right track

The fitness crazy crowd of Bengaluru has always embraced marathons and long-distance running events. And with many such runs and events coming up in the city, runners are preparing themselves for a safe and healthy route ahead.

When participating in a long-distance run, one has to remember that the preparations require a lifestyle change. DeeptaRagunath, a fashion designer and runner, says that there has to be a proper rhythm when starting preparations for a run. “Eating clean should be the focus for any endurance-based activity. Taking four to six meals a day in smaller proportions is good,” she says.

Proper hydration should always be on one’s mind. “It’s only after the run that most people feel like drinking a lot of water. Also, most don’t stop during the run as this slows them down. This isn’t a healthy step though. If one doesn’t respond to warning signs, they could collapse midway,” she details.

Chafing is a concern for most runners. “While running, there is constant friction between the clothes one is wearing. Applying petroleum jelly is such areas helps,” she says. Wearing bright or fluorescent colour gear is a must for the day as this keeps motorists cautioned, she adds.

Staying fit and healthy is of utmost importance for any running event, says Atif Umar, a senior vice-president with a bank, who chooses to go for a sports massage or a tissue massage a couple of days before the event. “Increasing one’s water consumption by 50 percent is another requisite during the preparation process. Nutrition levels should be monitored,” he says.

Waking up early a few days before the event would also prepare oneself better for the day, he points out. “One should be up two-and-a-half hours before the race else their body will be sluggish. I have dates and bananas for breakfast along with beetroot juice.” Starting a bit slow would be a good strategy. “Picking up pace as one progresses through the race is a better plan,” he adds.

The tapering period is important when preparing for a run. Regulars like Thomas Bobby Philip, a capability development manager, says that one should reduce the distance of their run and increase the intensity while getting closer to the event date.

“One’s diet should be a healthy one. Avoid eating junk and indulge in a carbohydrate-rich diet with fruits and vegetables. Resting properly and ensuring that you don’t tire yourself out is important,” he says.

To keep himself mentally strong and motivated, Bobby watches running videos on YouTube, especially a day before the D-day as this boosts his adrenaline.

“It is important to take beverages like coffee or water in small quantities on the event day. Reach the venue one-and-a-half hours before the starting time so that you have enough time to warm up and chat with friends,” he adds.

Keeping a track of the route and planning accordingly is important. “I plan my run mentally, kilometre by kilometre. One could carry their music and other gear accordingly. Do not try new shoes or anything new that day as it could be inviting trouble,” he says.

Simanta Baruah, an IT professional, wasn’t sure how to go about things when he started running in 2012.
“Later on, I joined a group and strategically approached every run and event. This works best for most people,” he says. Be it a 5k run or a 42k event, preparing well is crucial. “It’s not like an exam, where you can just mug up information in the last few days. Sleeping well, eating well and training well for the
event forms the backbone of a good run,”he adds.

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