How many kilometers per week should we run in training for competitions?

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Determining your weekly mileage during race training is a delicate balance: You want to run enough miles to physically prepare your body without running so much that you end up overtaxing yourself and toeing the starting line spent—or worse, injured.

It’s also individualized as it depends on your speed, strength, experience, base, and goals. Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all prescription for how many miles a week to run.

It’s also individualized as it depends on your speed, strength, experience, base, and goals. Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all prescription for how many miles a week to run.

“If you’re running your first 5K, you might start with a minimum five-mile-per-week program. If you’re running your first marathon, you might start with a minimum of 15 miles per week,” Kann says.

Rather than looking for a specific mileage plan, think of it more like building up to a certain amount of time on your feet. “This allows the runner to progress safely,” says Rich Velazquez, a running coach at Mile High Run Club in New York City.

Still, there are a few rules of thumb and general guidelines that can help you come up with how many miles a week to run.

And, determining how many miles to run for a race first means knowing how many miles are in the distance you’re choosing.

How many miles in a 5K: 3.1

How many miles in a 10K: 6.2

How many miles in a half marathon: 13.1

How many miles in a marathon: 26.2

Rule 1: The longer the race, the higher the mileage.

Duh, right? If you’re training for a marathon, you’re obviously going to need to log more weekly miles than if you’re training for a 5K. No matter the race distance, though, there are three main components to a cohesive running program, says Velazquez: a long run day, a speed day, and a recovery day.

“Your long run should be conducted at a slow pace and eventually last as long as your projected race time (remember, it’s about time on feet versus miles); your speed day is shorter in duration but faster than your predicted race pace; and your recovery day should be an easy/slow pace and lower mileage than your planned race,” he says.

So you’ll have some longer runs and some shorter runs no matter what you’re training for; the ultimate mileage, of course, depends on your race distance.

هر چه مسابقه طولانی تر باشد، مسافت هفتگی بیشتر می‏شود.

Rule 2: Mileage requirements increase as performance goals increase.

If your goal is simply to finish a race, you can run fewer miles than if your goal is to finish with a fast time.

“But as your goals shift towards performance, weekly mileage will most likely increase to support the demands of these goals: aerobic capability, energy utilization and sustainability over elongated periods of time, and efficiency of movement,” says Velazquez.

That’s because logging that time on your feet is what’s going to give you a stronger engine, adds Kann. “Obviously, your musculoskeletal system is going to get stronger as you spend more time on your feet,” she says.

“But when you’re out there running, you’re fueled by oxygen—that’s what gets your muscles to fire and gets the blood moving around. So the more time you spend on your feet, the more it’s going to increase the capacity of your aerobic engine, which is going to fuel you to go stronger for longer.”

مسافت مورد نیاز بر اساس اهداف شما بر مبنای پرفورمنس تغییر میکند

Rule 3: Not all miles are created equally.

No runner should go out and run the same pace every day; any good training plan should include speed, interval, tempo, and distance training, all of which offer different benefits.

“Speed training is where the body will shape and improve its running economy (energy demand for a given speed) thus improving overall efficiency in energy consumption and oxygen utilization,” says Velazquez.

“Interval training aligns specific speeds with specific intervals and set rest periods, tempo running is about maintaining consistent speeds over longer periods of time, and distance training is about getting the body used to impact and elongated performance.”

شیوه‌ی محاسبه‌‏ی همه مسافت‌ها یکسان نیستThe point of all those different training modalities? Ideally, you become a better, more well-rounded runner.

“If you only run at race pace, that’s the only pace you know,” says Kann. “You want to get your system ready to be comfortable moving at paces faster than race pace, so that when you get to race day, that pace doesn't feel so hard.”

While the bulk of your miles should be easy, aerobic-based miles, those faster miles get you to that point where you're clearing away the waste product in your muscles at the same rate that you're accumulating it, she explains, which will make your body more efficient come race day.


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Rule 4: Allow for adaptation when increasing mileage.

To avoid injury when upping your mileage, you need to take it slow and allow your body time to adapt to the increased workload. Many runners follow the 10 percent rule—i.e. never increasing your weekly mileage by more than 10 percent over the previous week.

“Most programs will build mileage week over week for about three weeks before introducing in a low mileage week (recovery),” Velasquez says. “From there, the buildup will start again as the body should have adapted from the increased volume with the rest and be ready and able to tackle more.”

اجازه دهید بدنتان با افزایش مسافت تطبیق یابد.Think about your runs in terms of quality over quantity, Kann says. “If you’re adding additional speed workouts to your week, you don’t want to run a super long run that weekend,” she says.

“You’re just asking a lot of your body all in a short period of time.” Your body, on a microscopic level, is breaking down muscle tissue when you run, and it needs to time to rebuild (that’s how you get stronger).

It’s important to look at the whole picture when it comes to weekly mileage, and think about the kind of miles you’re running and how that will impact your body.

Rule 5: Listen to your body.

When you’re following a training plan, it’s natural to want to hit the exact mileage that’s indicated—that’s how it works, right?

“We always tell people to start with a plan, but that plan is not the letter of the law,” says Kann. “It's not like you're going to get a failing grade if you don’t stick to that plan 100 percent.”

Running mileage just for the sake of running mileage can actually backfire, because overtraining can lead to a general disintegration of performance or even injury. “Broken sleep, elevated resting heart rate, lack of motivation and restlessness are all signs of overtraining,” says Velasquez.

به بدن خود گوش دهید.

With running comes a certain level of discomfort; part of the challenge is pushing yourself past those I-don’t-know-if-I-can-do-this boundaries. But Kann doesn’t advocate running through pain.

“Discomfort naturally comes with training as your body adapts, but if you feel the pain on one side of your body and not on the other or if you’re dealing with some kind of persistent pain, that's a sign that there's some kind of imbalance at play,” she says. When in doubt, err on the side of caution and pull back your pace or take a rest day. No runner ever healed any kind of pain or injury by running more.

Rule 6: A healthy runner beats an injured runner every time.

At the end of the day, the most important goal of any runner—whether you’re running a marathon, half marathon, 10K, or 5K—is to make it to the starting line without injury.

“The last thing you want is to overload yourself, break yourself down, and then push yourself past your limits,” says Kann. “That’s when you're gonna pull yourself out of the game for three weeks to recover. Then you’re really in trouble.”

“If you’re not feeling up to run, rest and reschedule,” says Velazquez. “And should that feeling persist, people training for longer races (i.e. a marathon) should give priority to the long run over the speed training.”

Remember: No one’s grading you on how well you stick to a mass-produced plan anyone on the internet can download. The real test is race day, and just how well you can get through it.

یک دونده سالم در هر زمانی می‌تواند دونده مصدوم را مغلوب کند

Rule 7: Adjust your base accordingly when coming back from injury.

You had your weekly mileage mastered when you were healthy, but if you’re sidelined with an injury, it requires a tweak. Before you get back to running, make sure you can walk for at least 45 minutes without pain, says exercise physiologist Susan Paul. Walking will help recondition your muscles, tendons, and ligaments to prepare for the more vigorous demands of running to come.

Then, you need to consider how long you’ve been off, adds Adam St. Pierre, a coach for CTS in Colorado Springs. If you’ve been sidelined for a week or less, you can pick up where you left off.

(You may even feel better when you do!)

But for a break of up to 10 days, start running at 70 percent of your mileage.

For 15 to 30 days off, dial back to 60 percent.

For a hiatus of 30 days to three months, start at half of your previous mileage.

If you’ve been off more than three months, you should start your weekly mileage from scratch.

پایه توانایی خود را بر اساس وضعیتِ خود بعد از بازگشت از آسیب دیدگی تنظیم کنید.

Target Totals:

The number of weekly miles to shoot for differs based on goals, baseline, and experience, but here’s an estimation to help guide you.

5K: 10 to 25

10K: 25 to 30

Half Marathon: 30 to 40

Marathon: 30 to 60


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What can a high resting heart rate tell you about your training?

ضربان قلب بالا در حین استراحتThe meaning behind this heart-related metric, plus three strategies for getting back to your baseline.

Whether you’re a fan of heart-rate training or only dabbled in hitting your zones, you’ve likely noticed your heart rate numbers on a watch or fitness tracker midrun.

But have you ever tapped on the little heart icon or noticed your beats per minute when your body was at rest?

For runners, resting heart rate can be just as meaningful to your training and overall health.

What is a resting heart rate?

As the term suggests, resting heart rate (RHR) refers to the number of times your heart beats per minute when the body is at rest.

You can get a fairly accurate measure using a wearable fitness tracker (chest straps, while less comfortable, tend to deliver more precise results than wrist-worn heart rate trackers) or by using your fingers to count your radial pulse.

ضربان قلب بالا در حین استراحت

“You want to take [a resting heart rate reading] first thing in the morning after a restful night’s sleep, lying on your back, free of any distractions,” Fabio Comana, M.A., M.S., faculty within the School of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences at San Diego State University, tells Runner’s World. If you use a watch, he suggests wearing it on the inside of your wrist so that it can better mold to the skin and soft tissue. Just be careful not to move your arm (or any other part of your body) while taking a reading.

According to the American Heart Association, the range for average resting heart rate is between 60 and 100 beats per minute (bpm). Your own rate can be impacted by several variables, including biological sex, stress, medications, medical issues, hormones, age, and level of regular physical activity.

Normal heart rateGenerally speaking, a lower resting heart rate is better.

“RHR is considered an indicator of overall cardiovascular fitness or how efficiently you are able to meet your body’s oxygen demands,” says Pamela Geisel, M.S., C.S.C.S., exercise physiologist and the director of performance and wellness services at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. “A lower RHR has been correlated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and other illnesses.”

A higher resting heart rate can be a sign of a myriad of health problems. For example, a 2017 meta-analysis of 87 relevant studies found “an increased risk of coronary heart disease, sudden cardiac death, heart failure, atrial fibrillation, stroke, cardiovascular disease, total cancer, and all-cause mortality with greater resting heart rate.”


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How does physical fitness play into resting heart rate?

The reason why runners and other athletes typically have lower resting heart rates than their sedentary peers is a matter of adaptation. As you increase your physical activity, “the body says, ‘How can I deliver oxygen to my blood cells more efficiently?’” Comana explains.

The answer: more red blood cells and, therefore, an increased blood volume. To accommodate that higher blood volume, the heart becomes stronger and able to pump out more blood with every contraction. “If you’re able to eject more blood out of the heart with every beat, your heart doesn’t have to beat as many times. So, that’s the reason why your resting heart rate comes down,” Comana says.

تناسب اندام بر ضربان قلب زمان های استراحت تاثیر می گذاردLessen your training or stop working out, and your resting heart rate will eventually creep back up.

“You no longer have that demand for as many red blood cells,” Comana explains. So, as red blood cells die (they have a lifespan of about four months), the body manufactures fewer new ones, blood volume decreases, and the heart and its stroke volume (the amount of blood it pumps out with each contraction) shrink.

“It’s like a muscle: If you don’t use it, you lose it,” Comana says.

What does a high resting heart rate mean?

So, what if you’re sticking to your regular training schedule and notice that your resting heart rate is elevated?

A single, higher-than-normal reading generally is not cause for concern; dehydration, stimulants, or even a bad night’s sleep could cause a temporary spike.

But if you see your resting heart ratte climbing by eight to 10 beats over the course of seven to 10 days, Comana recommends examining both your workouts and your life in general. You could be overtraining and not allowing your body adequate rest and recovery between workouts.

ضربان قلب زمان استراحت بالاOn the other hand, your high resting heart rate may have nothing to do with exercise. “A lot of the time, what we consider to be overtraining may not be your program,” he says. “It may be the life stresses that are just dog piles on top of you, because stress is just an accumulation of any disruption of homeostasis.”

How can you lower a high resting heart rate?

To your body, stress is stress; it doesn’t matter if it’s coming from a looming work deadline or back-to-back HIIT workouts. Problems at work, in your relationship, and relating to your finances obviously can’t be avoided—you need to tend to those issues, which is inherently stressful. “But what you can do is control your workouts."

Comana says. “You might need to off-load, de-load, or redirect.”

How can you lower a high resting heart rate?

Off-loading, or stopping exercise altogether, is the most drastic intervention, but it can be incredibly effective. Ever notice how that first run after a few days off can feel like one of your best ever? “You might have been pushing the envelope where you were bordering on overtraining, and we just gave you some time off to allow your body a little bit more time to recuperate, to restore homeostasis. And then you came back feeling refreshed,” Comana says. “Stress is not ordinarily bad, but we need time to recover from it.”

De-loading is the process of temporarily reducing the volume and intensity of training. Comana recommends cutting down to 50% to 70% of what you usually do for your workouts. That means if you run six days a week, you may want to incorporate a couple of extra rest days and, on the days you do train, run at an easier or more moderate pace.


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Comana’s third strategy, redirecting, is simply switching up your routine with a new activity, preferably something that feels fun or playful. “Let's take a break from pounding the treadmill and go do something else. Let’s go hike a hill. Let's go swim in the pool,” Comana says. “Go play so it seems like it’s something fun rather than it’s something that you have to do—something that’s part of your training. That’s the idea behind it.”

کاهش ضربان قلب بالا در زمان استراحتIf, after adjusting your workouts and lowering your stress levels, you’re still experiencing a high resting heart rate, it’s a good idea to check in with your medical provider. “An elevated heart rate response could be indicative of something bigger, something more problematic,” Comana says. If you implement strategies to lower a high resting heart rate and it’s not coming down, that could be a red flag that should be more thoroughly investigated, he adds. While a high resting heart rate could be tied to several conditions, it would be just one factor at play, so your doctor will do a full exam before making a diagnosis.


Why are dynamic stretches important in running?

حرکات کششی دینامیک
At the Furman Institute of Running and Scientific Training (FIRST) in Greenville, South Carolina, we hear from runners who want to get faster, those who simply want to enjoy the sport for life, and those who’ve given up on running entirely. They’ve stopped because injuries have made it too frustrating or too painful to continue.

The two of us—both longtime runners—spend a lot of time discussing what we can do now to increase the likelihood that we’ll log miles well into old age. We want to be able to keep doing what we love to do—and that’s probably a goal of yours, too.

Why do runners get injured?

Based on our experiences as athletes, coaches, and exercise scientists, we developed the 7-Hour Workout Week, which is detailed in our book Train Smart, Run Forever. The plan includes activities to enhance cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular strength and endurance, and flexibility.

Many runners have confessed that they skip the resistance training, dynamic stretching, and cross-training we recommend, but these exercises are critical for staying healthy as you become fitter and faster.

Improving range of motion is an essential component of fitness training. The risk factors associated with poor flexibility include faulty posture, altered running mechanics, and risk of injury and pain. That’s why we recommend stretching every day—it’s just that important.


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These five moves are easy to do daily and take just minutes to complete. Remember: Five minutes today can prevent eight weeks on the injury list later.

How to perform dynamic stretching exercises

How to use this list: Perform the dynamic exercises above every day and/or before every run. Below, Runner’s World+ coach, Jess Movold, demonstrates each move so you can learn the proper form. The entire routine takes less than 5 minutes and can even be performed outside prerun. You need no equipment.

1. Side Lounge

With both feet forward, take a wide step to the right. Bend your right knee as you send hips back and shift your weight over your right foot to drop into a side lunge. Keep chest lifted. Return to standing. Repeat for 30 seconds, then switch sides.

[The best runners don’t just run, they hit the gym. The Beginner’s Guide to Strength Training will teach you all the fundamentals to get the most out of your weight session.]

2. Modified Single-Leg Deadlift

Stand on your left leg with your left knee slightly bent and touch your right toes slightly behind your left leg on the floor for balance. Slowly send hips back and hinge forward until your torso is parallel to the floor, keeping right toes on the ground to stabilize yourself. Return to start position.

Repeat for 30 seconds, then switch legs.

3. Straight-Leg Lateral Swing

With your hands on a wall or something for support, shift weight to left leg. With your right leg straight, swing it across the front of your body and out to right side in a fluid motion.

Do 12 reps, then switch legs.

4. Bent-Knee Lateral Swing

With your hands on a wall or something for support, shift weight to left leg. Bend right knee to a 90-degree angle, and drive it toward your left shoulder and then out to the right.

Do 12 reps, then switch legs.

5. Bent-Knee Forward Swing

With your hands on a wall or something for support, shift weight to left leg. Bend right knee to a 90-degree angle, and drive it up toward chest then extend the leg straight out behind you.

Do 12 reps, then switch legs.

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تمرین‌های بالا از این منبع اقتباس شده: Runner’s World Train Smart، Run Forever با پیروی از تمرین‌های هفتگی نوآورانه 7 ساعته از Bill Pierce و Scott Murr، بنیانگذاران FIRST

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