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runningCOMBAT HOLIDAY WEIGHT GAIN BY TRAINING TOGETHER FOR A RACE

Every Thanksgiving, the average person consumes 3,000 calories and, as a nation, we collectively consume 736 million pounds of turkey, 50 million pumpkin pies and 40 million green bean casseroles. Thankfully, Thanksgiving is more than just an all-you-can-eat bingefest. It is a special time to celebrate friends and family — and a great way to do that is to train together and complete the annual Turkey Trot 5K (that’s 3.2 miles), sponsored by the Island Rec Center. In just three short weeks, you and your loved ones can be race ready. Here’s how:

STEP 1: Decide who is racing.

Have small children? Plan on running — or walking — with a stroller or a baby carrier and practice using them during training. This also applies if you will be racing with someone who needs wheelchair assistance. Have a group of people while different athletic abilities and ages? Remind the team that it is about the journey, not your time or the finish line. Commit to working together. Create a group text so that you can send training updates and words of motivation to everyone in your group.

STEP 2: Set a training schedule.

Here’s a sample training schedule suggested by Laura Fromdahl of Tri Strong Coaching, with a few tips:

WEEK 1

Walk/Run (three times)

Example:

1/4 mile warm up walk
1/2 mile of walking 2 minutes/running 1 minuteStationary bike
1/4 mile cool down walk

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Cross-Train/Strengthen Your Core (15 minutes)

Example:

Stationary bike or swimming

Tips:

1  How do your feet feel? Talk to a physical therapist if any discomfort arises.

2  How old are your running shoes? Maybe you need a new pair?

3  Work up to running 1.5 miles by the end of the week.

4  Core strengthening is best performed after a functional screen to determine any pre-existing injuries or issues.

5  Set aside one rest day.

 

WEEK 2 

Walk/Run (three times)

Example:

1/2 mile warm up walk
1/2 mile of walking 2 minutes/running 2 minute
1/2 miles cool down walk

+

Cross-Train/Strengthen Your Core (20 minutes)

Example:

Stationary bike or swimming

Tips:

1  Eat a banana 30 minutes before working out.

2  Alert your doctor or physical therapist if you experience an elevated resting heart rate, unquenchable thirst, or muscle soreness after a 72-hour period.

3  Work up to running 2.5 miles by the end of the week.

 

WEEK 3

Run (twice)

Example:

Strengthen1-mile run at an easy pace or an interval walk/run.

+

Cross-Train/Strengthen Your Core (20 minutes)

Tips:

1 Sleep eight hours per night and take a rest day prior to the race.

2 Stay hydrated. Drink 60 percent of your body weight in ounces per day.

 

STEP 3: Make it fun.

This applies to both your training and the day of the event. When training, pick scenic places to exercise like your favorite beach, or share a meal after working out with your team. Try making an inspirational or funny playlist that includes songs like “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor and the theme song to “Rocky.” On race day, you and your running partners can wear matching race outfits, and enjoy a fun post-race lunch. And, of course, make sure to have a few laughs while running the course.

Tips:

1 Find a course that is fun and not beyond either runner’s ability. (See Turkey Trot below)

2 Make a friendly bet, loser buys post race lunch.

Turkey Trot

Turkey Trot 5K Race

When: 8 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 23

Where: The Chart House, 2 Hudson Road, Hilton Head Island

To register: www.islandreccenter.org/community-events/turkey-trot


Becca Edwards is a wellness professional, freelance writer, and owner of b.e.WELL+b.e.CREATIVE (bewellbecreative.com).