Just as Rome wasn’t built in a day athletes are not made in a week. The more training you do the more resistance you will build up and the easier you will find crossing the finishing line on race day. As a rule of thumb, Sport Ecosse recommend that you give yourself at least 4 months to train for fitness challenges that are above a distance of a 10K. With less than 3 months to go before our SYHActive Outdoor Challenge here's a guideline for where you should be with your training...
3 Months Prior to the event: Build strong foundations by aiming to cycle for 2 hours per week and 1 x 20 mile cycle ride.
2 Months Prior to the event: This is where you should be building up endurance and strength. Aim to cycle 3 hours per week and go on 1 x 25 mile ride this month.
1 Month Prior to event: Now maximise your training with 1 weekend back to back cycling, 4 hours on Saturday / 3 hours on Sunday and on the other weekends 2 hours cycling each day.
Race Week: Take it easier and only go for short and gentle cycle rides.
Know what you’re capable off and devise a training plan that is personal to your needs and capabilities and be creative! Don’t solely stick to running and cycling, include other types of cardio activities such as boxing or going to the gym. Ensure you have correct equipment and exercise gear - local running or cycling shops are a gold mine of information. With cycling practice both uphill climbing and downhill descending, descending is a separate skill in itself and you need to be prepared for it! With running vary your running pace between slow jog and steady run. Last but not least have rest days – training every day will only do more harm than good so give your muscles a break and incorporate stretching days and yoga into your fitness schedule
Carb up! Carbs provide essential fuel for athletes. So on training days ensure that you load up. Carbohydrates will also provide glycogen and protein that will help repair your muscle tissue - 65% of your calories should come from complex carbohydrates such as wholemeal bread, rice and pasta. Re-fuel fast...after a long training run, have some carbohydrates within 30 minutes and remember to eat your greens! A high intake of fruit and vegetables is even more important when exercising regularly as the vitamins and minerals they contain are essential for your immune system. On race day ensure you eat at least 2-3 hours before the event. Opt for a breakfast of porridge as this will release carbs slowly throughout the race ensuring your energy levels remain consistently high.
Tweet us at @syhahostelling to let us know how your training is going!
Biography for SYHA Hostelling Scotland
Scotland's best known network of youth hostels in stunning city & rural locations. Go on a #SYHAdventure! As a not-for-profit organisation, we encourage guests to join SYHA Hostelling Scotland. Members enjoy a range of exclusive benefits including dual membership of Hostelling International, providing access to more than 4,000 youth hostels in over 90 countries worldwide. Membership and guest overnight income supports our charitable youth programmes and the maintenance of the hostelling network, particularly in rural Scotland.