A little help please

Hi All! I have always been fairly fit (but going to the gym rather than running) but this year am looking to run some half marathons and I have a few questions: 1. How often can I train? (I have been running every day but felt that my legs had not recovered from previous day) 2. My legs are the area which I fail in first, not my CV. Is there any way of reducing the pain in legs so can really stretch my CV system? 3. What to eat? I have been cutting carbs (for general health), but is this sensible if training a lot? Plus protein afterwards and BCAAs helpful? 4. I am aiming for 8 minute miles. Should I train at this speed for as long as possible, or train for a longer distance at a slower pace? Thank you all in advance! Oli


  • 1. You can train every day, but you need to make sure that most of your running is very easy. Easy in this case meaning that you aren't feeling it too much the next day.

    2. If your legs are hurting badly, more than just feeling a little tired, then you are running too fast or maybe too far. Find a speed that you can run the distance without hurting too much. As you get fitter this will naturally increase.

    3. Lower carb diets are fine as long as you're not doing high intensity workouts, eat plenty of veg and generally healthily and you'll be good.

    4. Train slower, of the miles you do each week, 70-80% should be easy. Probably 9-10 min miles for you. Then for one or two sessions a week up your speed, but when you're a beginner, most of the fitness gains come from running plenty of slow easy mileage.

  • 1)  I find that running every other day is the best for my body.  Any more than that and I ache too much and get tired, but it is ok to cross train on some of those other days.  Its a good idea to have one or two days a week when you don't do any exercise as your body grows stronger during recovery than during training.

    I've run marathons on only 3 runs per week.  If you train less often you might find that you can go further on some of the runs and that it is actually more beneficial when you are aiming for longer distance events.

    Try doing one long run per week, where you gradually increase the distance, one short slow recovery run to help the legs loosen up after the long run, and one session which is either hills, intervals or a bit faster than is comfortable (but not a sprint).

  • 2) Running less often will help with the leg pain.  Other things you can try are making sure that you stretch out properly after each run, and also later in the day if you are still stiff, eating something containing protein promptly after a run, and keeping active - i.e not sitting down in front of the tv after a run but keeping moving by doing a bit of housework or the food shopping for example

    3) Low carbs are ok as long as you are getting some carbs.  it is more important that you get enough calories inside you in whatever form suits your body and personal preferences.  I don't subscribe to the carb loading theory.  It just makes me sluggish

  • 4)  I've never trained for a specific time.  I do some comfortable runs, some where I push myself a bit and some where I do sprint intervals.  Mixing it up and not trying to do the same thing every session is the key

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