Running Essentials You Need To Know

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Running is one of the most low-maintenance sports to ever exist. There will be no need to buy any expensive equipment to enjoy this exercise. However, if you are really serious about it, there are some running items that you need to have in order to achieve a safe and fun-filled run.

The very basic thing that you need is a nice pair of running shoes. The good news is that there are a lot of great brands available in the market today. All you need is to choose what best fits you and your budget.

Aside from shoes, you will, of course, need good running clothes. As a rule, it is important to avoid items that are made of cotton because it will just end up absorbing your sweat because once it gets wet, it will stay that way all throughout.

A reliable running belt can make things easier for you. You can put in there the items you will be carrying while running such as your ID, money and the likes. Some belts are even glow in the dark to protect the wearer during nighttime runs.

For your skin protection, you should have sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. Aside from this, you can also use a hat or a visor to protect your face from the glaring rays of the sun.

If you have additional budget and you want to track your body fat percentage, then you can get a body fat scale. For the brands recommended by fitness experts, you can see the best body fat analyzer from this list.

These are just some of the very basic items you need for running. Again, you do not need much. Just enjoy the run, the thrill it can bring as well its effect on your health and fitness.

Tips on Choosing the Best Running Supplements for You

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With so many nutritional supplements in the market today, it has become increasingly hard the past few years to choose the best one for you. The thing is, it is so easy to be tempted by low prices and unbelievably good promises from manufacturers. In order to not fall into the trap of the genius marketing strategies of various brands, we have listed the most effective tips when it comes to choosing the best supplements for you.

  • First of all, you need to identify your main reasons for taking a supplement. For a lot of people, they are just taking supplements because they have seen it advertised on TV or in print. Therefore, it is important for you to know why you are buying a product in the first place. Is it because you are having sleepless nights? Is it because you are too stressed the past months? Or maybe because you lost your appetite? Once you have identified your primary reason, it will be easier to choose the best brand for you.
  • Check your dietary intake. In order to get the best supplement for you, it is crucial to know what’s lacking in your diet. As experts have suggested time and again, the best way to get nutrients is still through a well-balanced diet. The supplement that you need depends on what you eat. For example, if you are a vegan, you may need one that contains Vitamin B 12.
  • Do your own research about the brand that you are planning to buy. Confirm if their claims are backed up with proof and studies. Also, it is essential to check if the manufacturer has all the necessary permits to operate. Do not forget to see the reviews from customers too. If you cannot find a good review, talk to someone with enough knowledge on the product. You can also ask your doctor to be sure.
  • Always check the labels of the supplements carefully. Take time to examine its components. The label should contain all the ingredients as well as the amount and percentage of each. Most supplements do not only include vitamins and minerals, but other formulations as well such as antioxidants. Just remember to choose a supplement that was specifically manufactured for you sex as well as age.
  • Speaking of labels and percentages, remember to consider the daily value recommended for the nutrients. What you need to know is that for most vitamins and minerals, the body will not be able to absorb beyond the daily requirement. As a rule, what you should aim is just the 100% of your daily requirement.
  • Make sure to get your supplements from reputable manufacturers. You do not have to worry about the price because there are so many good brands that actually provide discount codes to their loyal customers such as MyProtein. You can check out their codes at http://www.thefitnessrecipes.com/myprotein-discount-code-voucher/.
  • Double check on the reported side effects of the product you will be taking. While these are uncommon, it is still better to weigh the pros and cons of taking it regularly. You can do this by checking out reviews from customers.
  • Choose companies that put in a lot of effort in research. You should not look for a brand that is just all hype. What you need is a manufacturer that is serious in bringing the best supplements for their clients. A company that wants to ensure the effectiveness and safety of their products should always be your top choice. Do not be blinded by marketing strategies. So, how would you know this? It’s pretty simple. If the company discusses their research efforts in their official website, then it is a good sign. You can also browse in the internet to know more about the brand.
  • Be cautious on the red flags on the labels of supplements. You should avoid products that contain other additives and preservatives.

Supplements are important especially when dietary intake cannot provide all the necessary vitamins and minerals that the body needs everyday. Let the tips listed above be your guide so that you will be able to make an informed choice when choosing the best supplement for you.

Choosing the Best Workout Outfit

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When it comes to workout clothes, you don’t need to sacrifice style over comfort because you can actually have both. You can look fabulous even when you are working hard to stay fit and healthy. To help you, here are some of the most useful tips and tricks when choosing the best outfit for you.

– It is important to consider the exercise regimen that you will be doing. What are the activities that you do the most? Just remember to pick pieces that are not only comfortable, but appropriate to your activity as well. It is also great to choose outfits that are versatile.

– Do your research first before buying your workout clothes. Technology has paved the way for pieces with awesome features. For example, there are outfits that protect the wearer from the harmful rays of the sun while other pieces can make you more visible when exercising outdoors.

– While old shirts and baggy pants are very popular choices, they are actually not ideal. First of all, if you feel lousy because of what you are wearing, the tendency is that you will not be motivated to reach your goals. As a rule, it is important to wear clothes that give you a good push and not the other way around. Don’t choose pieces that remind you of lazy afternoons and the likes.

– Don’t wear clothes that are too loose because they can put you at risk of accidents. Loose gym clothes can get caught in the equipment that you are using. Go for clothes with proper fit.

– Learn to pick the right fabric for your clothes. As much as possible, choose pieces that can help quickly evaporate your sweat. Cotton is very comfortable to wear, but it cannot draw sweat away from your body, instead, the fabric will just absorb it, leaving you sweaty and feeling heavy. Fitness aficionados recommend using “wicking” clothes that are made of polyester or a similar material. These clothes may be more expensive, but they are known for having excellent quality, which lets you save more in the long run.

– Still on the fabric, it is essential to prevent fabrics that can irritate the skin especially after repetitive movements, which are typical during workout sessions. Avoid fabrics with a rough texture.

– Go for workout clothes that are specifically designed for gym time such as the very popular UK brand Gymshark. For those who want to get big discounts and saving money on their purchase you can use a UK Gymshark discount code. Gymshark has a wide array of workout clothes that are loved by many fitness enthusiasts.

– Shoes with good quality can make a huge difference. Your footwear should be light-weight and comfortable to wear. It should fit properly with enough space in the toe area.

– To prevent blisters, don’t forget to wear socks that perfectly fit you. Based on reviews, it is best to wear those with no seams. Also, remember that ill-fitting socks can impede your circulation, which is, of course, not a good idea.

– A good sports bra is important for women. It does not only give you proper support during workout sessions, but it can also help prevent straining of the muscles. When buying a sports bra, make sure that it is a little tighter than what you normally wear, but not to the point that it makes you uncomfortable.

– It will be wise to test your workout outfit first before debuting it in public. This is essential to make sure that the clothes you bought will not fail, or worse, embarrass you in the gym or while you are out running.

Workout sessions can be fun and enjoyable if you are wearing the correct outfit. Do not hesitate to invest on some stylish and yet very comfortable clothes so that you will be more motivated and inspired to reach all your fitness goals. Just think of it this way, your clothes can make you feel good, which, in turn, will manifest too on your motivation and way of thinking. Therefore, it is a win-win situation if you have the best workout outfit next time you will hit the gym or go for a run.

Trail Running Preparation

Trail Running Preparation

Trail running has its own charms. Running on muddy terrains and dirt paths can give you a magnificent feeling of being connected with nature. Many runners switch from running on flat tracks to trail running for many different reasons, one of which is the beautiful, relaxing atmosphere running on natural, scenic ambience brings.

Although trail running can impose a feeling of relaxation, it’s no laughing matter to engage in this type of running. Trail running is extremely challenging as it includes running on uneven slopes, rocky, and muddy paths which can be dangerous and may cause injuries if you haven’t prepared enough for it.

You need to be physically prepared in order to survive trail running. Since the surface you’ll be running on can go upward and downward, you may want to brace yourself for the constant change in running phase and rhythm you may experience. Also, because you’ll be stepping on natural landscape, it is possible for you to encounter obstacles such as big rocks as well as fallen trees that you may have to avoid to complete your run.

Because of this, you have to take on some physical trainings in order to be ready for what you will face in trail running.

Doing some box jumps will enhance your ability to land softly on the ground. Being able to land softly and immediately get back to running is crucial to navigating terrains, especially in downward slopes.

Enhancing your ankle strength is equally essential since you’ll be sprinting on uneven surfaces. Immediately switching to trail running from running on flat surfaces unprepared can cause ankle sprains or other ankle injuries. Doing some foot workouts while barefoot can help you establish ankle strength and brace you for trail running. You may try some leg lunges as well as leg balancing barefoot.

Practice running on grassy areas as well as soft grounds and transition slowly. If you’re just starting trail running, concentrate more on being accustomed to running on the challenging environment rather than the running at faster speeds. You can focus on your speed once you get used to the difficult landscape of trail running.

Trail running is a rewarding experience for every runner.  As soon as you become familiar with it, you will realise why hundreds of runners switch to trail running.

How To Choose The Best Running Belt For You

Running Belt

A running belt has become a rather trendy piece of equipment for runners which not only provides a functional purpose but can also act as a fashion statement. Running belts come in all shapes and sizes as well as for a variety of different purposes from just helping you carry everyday items such as your phone and keys to more fitness minded items such as your water bottle and energy gels. Which running belt you ultimately choose will largely come down to what you intend to use it for i.e. are you a recreational or a competitive runner, running in marathons. Whilst this article doesn’t go into running belts specifically this article will help you choose the best running belt for you.

1) Storage Size

This should be at the top of the list of factors when taking into account which running belt you should buy. If you are looking for a belt for some relatively short distance runs then space will not be a top priority and you can choose a belt that has slightly less storage space which might be more aesthetically pleasing. If on the other hand you are planning on using it for long distance training runs then you are going to require something that has ample storage space for water and any energy supplements you might want to take along.

2) Comfort

Comfort should also be one of your top priorities when choosing a belt, ,you will after all be wearing it and due to the nature of running you don’t want to have to be worried about what is happening to your belt and its contents whilst you are running. There are a number of different belt designs such as pouch or tubular so make sure you know the differences and which will suit your body type best. If your friend has one ask them if you can try it or if all else fails go into a shop and try them on. Brands such as Amphipod and Flipbelt are examples of a tubular design whereby they basically have a one size fits all approach where the material has the ability to stretch.

3) Appearance

This is not a huge concern for those who are more worried about performance however those of us who are more fashion conscious then this does become a larger concern. There is no doubting that some running belts are better looking than others and the ability to choose from a wide range colours might be an important factor for some. You may also consider that some running belts use their colours as refractory surfaces to increase your visibility when running on the road which is a worthwhile safety benefit.

4) Quality

This could be said for practically every purchase but the quality of the materials and workmanship should be important. We recommend going for a breathable lycra that not only provides comfort but also performance. Investing in a running belt that is of a higher quality will only save you more money in the long run by not having to replace it as frequently.

How Smoking Impacts Your Running

How Smoking Impacts Your Running

Running is a healthy workout commonly practiced by individuals who want to enjoy, maintain, and promote a healthier lifestyle. It is more than just a hobby for people who have a deeper purpose in running, like aiming to be a professional runner.

But what happens when a runner is smoking cigarettes, too? How can smoking really affect running? And, if you are a smoker with aspirations to be a runner, do you have to give up smoking?

It is common knowledge that smoking has a negative effect on the lungs, and when you have healthier lungs, the more manageable running will be for you. Being able to manage your breathing more efficiently will enable you to endure running for a longer duration of time. There are runners who smoke that admitted to have more laboured breathing than those who do not smoke.

Smoking also limits the oxygen absorption in your bloodstream. Oxygen has to be transmitted to your joints and muscles in order for them to function more effectively and endure running. Since smoking limits the amount of oxygen your blood gets and sends to your system, you may easily get tired while running if you’re a smoker. It is also possible for you to encounter more frequent joint and muscle aches or pains if you smoke as a runner, as your muscles are being pushed to their limits while they aren’t getting the oxygen they need in order to produce energy and keep up with your running.

However, even though smoking can affect a runner’s performance, it’s not uncommon to find smokers among runners. You can always find some smokers from casual runners to marathon joiners. Some simply can’t quit, and some don’t feel any unpleasant physical effects that directly affect their running performance.

Sure, you can always opt to get more training to increase your stamina and muscle endurance; but just imagine how much farther you can go with your running skills if you give up smoking. You can totally maximise your lung at and muscle capacity to accomplish even greater as a runner.

At the end of the day, quitting smoking altogether to put more focus on running will be totally up to you. Just keep in mind that smoking can have a major undesirable effect on one’s health – runner or not.

Bad Running Habits

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Running is an exercise that’s supposed to keep you fit. Still, some runners, beginners and seasoned alike, miss the opportunity to maximize what running can do for them. If you’re a regular runner, be wary of some bad habits you might be getting into. Bad habits may hinder you from enjoying the benefits that you should be getting from running regularly.

Watch out for some of these bad habits that you might be practicing, otherwise the efforts you exert on working out regularly may just go to waste—or worse, it can lead to injuries that may prevent you from running.

It’s common for beginners to become fascinated with seasoned runner’s skills. This fascination or admiration can easily lead to wanting to be a seasoned runner as fast as they could. One of the bad habits runners have is doing too much too soon. Yes, you want to run as fast as you can, you want to be a pro when it comes to running, but don’t forget that even the best runners have started out as beginners. It took time and effort for them to master their running skills. Being in a hurry in developing your running skills can lead to injuries. Take one step at a time. The habit of trying to do too much too soon is common with experienced runners as well, especially those who are recovering from injuries. As much as it’s inviting to get back on track and get your former running pace back, you have to take it easy. Make sure that your priority is to fully recover from the injury. With sufficient time and proper practice, you’ll catch up to your old running pace.

Staying up late at night is another bad habit some runners follow. Getting enough sleep and rest is crucial to every runner as it aids in recovery and restoration of muscles from strenuous running. According to Ralph Downey, Ph.D., Chief of Sleep Medicine at California’s Loma Linda University Medical Center, “Sleep enhances the restoration of cells that are damaged from running.” Having adequate hours of sleep not only helps your body recover, but boosts your running performance as well.

If you’re planning on being a regular runner, you ought to know that you have to invest in the right shoes. The right pair of shoes doesn’t mean the most expensive ones; but choose a pair that suits you well and you’re most comfortable wearing. Wearing a pair of running shoes that do not protect your feet or do not fit you well may cause foot injuries.

Forgetting to wear sunscreen is also one of the common mistakes runners make. If you’re running outdoors, protect your skin from the sun by wearing sunscreen, even if the weather doesn’t seem sunny.
Another bad habit some runners practice is ignoring dull aches and pains. While it’s true that body aches and pains are an aftermath of running, watch out for pains that have lasted for more than two days. Don’t self-medicate by just drinking pain relievers, consult a health professional to prevent the injuries from getting worse.

Some runners also forget the importance of cooling down after running. Cooling down by walking or jogging after running helps the body recover more quickly.

Breaking bad running habits may be a challenge but once you’ve steered clear of them, it can be a great deal of help in improving and maximizing your running performance.

Running for Older People: Staying Fit at Fifty

Running for Older People Fit at Fifty

In 2013, an elderly couple from Australia broke the world record for running a marathon every day for an entire year. Janette Murray-Wakelin, 64, and Alan Murray, 68, are just two of the many older runners who have proven that age truly does not matter–especially in running.

Running has become a very common exercise for people of all ages. A research from University of California at Stanford found out that running slows aging and improves elderly health. The research also revealed that older people who run have a reduced risk of heart disease, neurological disease, cancer, as well as sleep disorders. Aside from this, running has also proven to be helpful to older people who suffer from memory loss according to a study conducted by University of Colorado Boulder. Running also relieves emotional stress and is proven to improve psychological health.

Although running is generally good and advisable for older people, there are still important things to keep in mind before trying the exercise.

There’s no age limit when it comes to running. However, for aspiring runners, especially those over the age of 50, it is recommended to consult a doctor prior to trying to run to ensure that it is safe for them. It’s crucial to know that the runner is in good shape for running; otherwise, the workout may do more harm than good.

For those who are just starting to run, remember to take it easy. Keep running at a slow to moderate pace. Any exercise done regularly, even with low impact or intensity, will still give amazing results.

Another factor to consider is good nutrition. Good eating habit will lead to healthier, stronger body that can withstand daily workouts. Hydration is also extremely important before and after running.

Do some warm ups before actual running. After running, it is also essential to stretch.

Cycling or spinning is also a good pre-running warm up. Cycling can improve the overall strength of your muscles. With increased muscle endurance, you can have better running performance.
One of the important things to remember while running is to stay alert and be mindful of your body’s reaction while jogging. If severe pains in the knees, joints, legs, or hips are felt, give yourself a rest and don’t push yourself too hard. Also, if physical pains are experienced, you should be checked by a health professional right away.
If your doctor has advised that running is not suitable for you, some other form of low-impact running can still be tried such as aqua jogging or deep-water running. Deep-water running is an excellent aerobic exercise. It has great effects on the heart and lungs as well.

Don’t forget to rest in between runs. Don’t overdo it.

There are older people who participated and did well at marathons. Even for older people who plan to start running just now, it is never too late. With proper preparation and precaution, it is possible for older people to run and enjoy the benefits running has to offer.

Supplements For Runners

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Everyone’s goal should be to eat a nutritionally balanced diet that comes from whole foods. You shouldn’t have to rely on supplements in order to provide your body the nutrients it needs. Having said this, even the healthiest of eaters may be missing out on some nutrients and could therefore benefit from taking a few key supplements to make up for any deficiencies they might have.

Here are some things that you might be deficient in and could benefit from supplementing with.

CalciumCalcium strengthens the bones and could therefore reduce the risk of stress fracture injuries. Various studies have also found there to be a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes amongst people with high levels of calcium intake. By consuming three servings of dairy each day you should be consuming sufficient amounts of calcium however if you continually fail to reach this goal it might be beneficial to supplement your diet.

Recommendation – Take 1000mg of calcium carbonate each day.

Fish Oil – This is a common deficiency with the majority of people rarely, if ever, eating fish. Omega 3 fatty acids that are present in fish oil reduce muscle soreness and are most commonly found in oily fish such as salmon. If you are eating 2 or more servings a week then there shouldn’t be any need to supplement.

Recommendation: Take a fish oil supplement that contains adequate amounts of both DHA and EPA. Aim for a minimum of 500mg.

Multivitamins- These are probably the most commonly taken supplement with 35 percent of adults taking them on a regular basis. If you already eat a well balanced diet then you probably won’t benefit from taking them. They do provide a good safety net and can fill in any gaps that might be present in your diet.

Recommendation: Don’t store them in places with high humidity such as your bathroom as this can affect their potency. Also be wary of overdosing on vitamins as this can be dangerous. The company MyVitamins have a great range of multivitamins and other health supplement.

Vitamin D – The body requires vitamin D in order to properly absorb calcium and therefore plays an essential role in bone health. A lot of people have a deficiency in vitamin D as it is present in very few foods. Our bodies are capable of making vitamin D when we are exposed to sun light however as most of us spend a large number of hours in doors a lot of us suffer from a deficiency. Most people would benefit from supplementing with vitamin D.

Recommendation – Take 1,000IU of vitamin D3 daily.

Whey protein – Whey protein is derived from cow’s milk and is a waste product from the manufacture of cheese. Whey protein has one of the best naturally occurring amino acid profiles and thus it will help increase your strength and build muscle. It is also very fast absorbing compared to other protein sources such as meat or soy. For runners it can speed up the recovery process and you can try eating after you have completed your run.

Recommendation – Take a protein shake post workout or you can add it to yogurt, oatmeal, smoothies or in other protein based recipes. If you are in the UK then make a purchase from Discount-Supplements.co.uk they have a large range of protein powder. Make sure to use a discount or voucher code when purchasing from Discount Supplements.

3 Track Workouts For Beginners

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Most of us start by running on the road, parks or a designated trail but for those of us lucky enough you might have access to a running track nearby. You shouldn’t be put off and think that running tracks are only for professionals. It is a great way to start off your running career.

The great thing is that you can focus entirely on your running and you don’t have to worry about a lunatic driver coming around the bend. Tracks are predictable, it’s the same on every lap and there isn’t anything there to trip you up. Since it’s easy to keep track of the distance you have run, it’s good for pacing. The surface of a track is also relatively soft so it’s going to give your muscles and joints and easier time by reducing the impact.

Although many believe a running track is reserved for track stars, it’s actually the perfect place to learn to run, increase your speed, and get away from the repetition of running on the roads.
Here are some quick facts that will come in handy when you are running around in a circle.

A standard athletics track has 8 lanes and it is 400 meters when measured from the lane closest to the middle. When running on a track you should run in a counterclockwise direction. The track operates very much like an expressway, where runners at different spends should stick to certain lanes. The inner lanes are used by runners who are operating at higher speeds whilst the outer lanes are for the slower paced runners.

If you want to try some track based workouts here are a few that will help you on your way.

Classic Quarters

This workout alternates between hard and easy and will really help you improve your speed and fitness.
Start off by warming up with a jog for four laps

For the real workout you will run one lap at a hard but controlled pace. Followed by one lap which you can use to recover. You can walk so that you can catch your breath and then jog to complete the rest of the lap. You should repeat this 4 times.

As a warm down, do 2 laps, one as a easy run and one just walking.

100s

This is a short workout with the goal of improving your running form.
In order to warm up start off by jogging for four laps.

For the actual workout you will need to sprint the straights which are 100 meters and the walk around the bends in order to recover. Keep doing this until you have covered 1 mil (4 laps)

For your warm down, walk one lap.

1, 2, 3s

This workout is longer than the other 2 mentioned so fat. They are a great way to learn how to control and pace yourself.

For your warm up start by jogging for four laps.

1 Run one lap at a hard but steady pace followed by one lap to bring down your heart rate and control your breathing.
2 Run two laps at a hard but steady pace followed by one lap to bring down your heart rate and control your breathing.
3 Run three laps at a hard but steady pace followed by one lap to bring down your heart rate and control your breathing.
2 Run two laps at a hard but steady pace followed by one lap to bring down your heart rate and control your breathing.
1 Run one lap at a hard but steady pace followed by one lap to bring down your heart rate and control your breathing.

For your warm down, simply walk one lap.

That’s three workouts you can try the next time you are able to run on a running track. Have fun!