STRONG MIND & BODY

Fin­ish­ing big takes men­tal and phys­i­cal strength. Learn to tough it out with tips from New Bal­ance ath­lete Kate Avery

Runner's World (UK) - - RW Promotion -

You may be quick off the mark, but if you strug­gle to main­tain your pace, you’re not alone; pow­er­ing through ‘the wall’ re­quires phys­i­cal and men­tal for­ti­tude, which you need to work on in the gym to com­ple­ment your out­door mileage.

‘You have to learn what your body can do to push your lim­its, and that ap­plies in the gym as much as on the track, says long-dis­tance run­ner and New Bal­ance ath­lete Kate Avery. Al­though strength train­ing is far from your first pri­or­ity, it will help you iron out any weak­nesses.

Kate trains with weights to boost her stamina. Re­search shows adding strength-train­ing ses­sions to your run­ning im­proves oxy­gen us­age, help­ing you run harder for longer. ‘I train to get the most out of my­self,’ says Kate. ‘And as a long-dis­tance run­ner, my com­peti­tors are push­ing me ev­ery step of the way. Hav­ing a strong body helps me stay strong men­tally.’

Kate knows that you are your tough­est op­po­nent, so a win­ning mind­set is cru­cial. In ad­di­tion to im­prov­ing your body’s oxy­gen ca­pac­ity and boost­ing your speed, hit­ting the weights is ther­a­peu­tic. Need a quick boost of feel-good en­dor­phins? Re­search in the jour­nal Com­ple­men­tary­ther­a­piesin Medicine found strength train­ing is the fastest way to im­prove your self-es­teem, tak­ing you from un­der­dog to com­peti­tor in the space of an hour.

For more on how to stay stronger for longer and win the mind game, visit run­ner­sworld.co.uk/ toughestop­po­nent.

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