Most running clubs offer a five K Time Trial and usually it is weekly events and a popular race among all runners. The best methods to crack your own personal speed is what we want to address here.
Your warm up is the most important as your body need proper preparation in order to run hard and fast from the first. A pre-warm has other advantages too including:
- Priming nerve to muscle pathways to be running ready
- Your mind is focused on the hard effort coming up
- Your heart rate increases
- Prepares your tendons, joints and muscles for great motion ranges
- Stimulating energy releasing reactions
- Increases blood flow
Do a warm-up properly though by allowing no less than fifteen minutes and keep in mind that the faster you plan to run and fitter you are the longer the warm-up period and not the other way around. It is wise to finish warming up just before the race or you lose the benefit of the warm-up and start to cool off again. Light jogging is excellent with gradual increase in tempo while you warm up. This jog can be followed by bum flicks, walking lunges, arm swings and leg swings which are part of dynamic stretches.
Other vital facts is proper nutrition on race day and great questions to ask yourself include:
- Are you sticking to a healthy, balanced diet?
- Do you eat too much or too little on race day?
- Did you overeat or indulge the previous day?
- Are you factoring into the equation that you probably have to get up earlier on race day?
As far as pacing is concerned ask yourself these questions too:
- Are you losing time by fighting initial crowds?
- Did you start too far back?
- Did you set realistic goals?
- Do you even have a goal?
- Did you start too fast and burn out?
- Do you have a game plan and realistic pace plan?
- Are you prepared for race demands?
- Did you rest too much during the week pre-race?