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Are you running 10kms for the first time?

I always say this: “Running 10K is easier said than done”, this can be compared with “Test Driven Development(TDD) is easier said than done”. The reason I say this is that both Running and TDD can be mastered by dedication and rigourous practice. That said, let me share my experiences of running 10K for the first time( not really first time, but equivalent to a first time).

I participated in the Open 10K category of the 2012 TCS World 10K Bangalore and I managed to complete the race in 1hr 07mins with around 2300 participants finishing ahead of me. There were quite a few mistakes I did which I thought would share:
1. Not preparing enough for tackling the high intensity situtations. To be frank there wasn’t any right preparation for the run, I thought cardio for 25mins at stretch (cross training in my case) would be enough to build the stamina. But I was wrong. The preparation helped me to keep a consistant pace for the first 6-7kms i.e for the first 25mins of the run, but after that it was hell. So one has to perpare for those post 20-25 mins of the run.
2. Not choosing the right shoes. I knew there was an issue with my running shoes, but I didn’t want to change the shoe at the last minute and hence paid price of not being able to give my 150% towards the last 2kms.
3. Thinking about the distance to cover lets us down lot of times. I knew the route well and hence I knew how far I had to run. This kind of deterred me to some extent.
4. Not getting inspired by the other runners among whom were much older than me and also from a different gender.
5. Not running 10Kms before and leaving it on the race day to decide if I can run or not.

Few other things I though of sharing:
1. Prepare yourself mentally for the 10K run. Its not going to be easy, especially the last 2-3kms of the run.
2. Dont set very high hopes/ unachievable targets.
3. While you are training- include strength training as well. Also spend some time on the cross trainer preferraly with high intensity levels.
4. Give importance to the lower back strengthening and also over flexibilty of the body. Proper stretching of muscles during the training is important.
5. Dont try anything too hard while training so as to avoid injuries.
6. Include/Prefer outdoor running to indoor running on treadmills.

The training regime followed for this would not only help you to run 10Kms or more but also helps in strengthening of muscles, increased flexibility, increased stamina, better confidence and also helps you to stay away from work related health hazards.

Lot of people working in the Software industries are usually so much loaded with work- work at office, hobby based work, travelling, lots of thinking, bad eating habits and so on, we are most likely to be the victims of health hazards. As some wise men said: “Prevention is better than cure”,and its better late than never. Lot of companies encourage their employees by providing Gyms in the office, corporate sports teams and even participating in such running events at the corporate level.

Some of the books I found useful:

Any of you have some interesting things to share about your fitness? or about your first running experiences? Do drop in your feedback as comments below.

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