Many of the runners face decline as they cross their 40s and 50s. Muscle mass begins to decline along with other loses with your health related to joints, bones and other parts of your body. Many of your major muscles are targeted with these aging effects. However, the good news is that this decline and strength diminishing process can be lowered down to a large extent. So if you are a runner and are concerned about aging and running at an old age, make sure you begin to strength train your body starting from today. Every day you should follow some cross training and strength building techniques so that you can build your body with a strength vital for old age running.
Tips for Training Your Body:
Here we are sharing a set of tips with the aid of which you can train your body to run better at an old age.
- Foam-Rolling: Foam rolling is a great exercise for gaining a flexible body. Lack of flexibility is something that is much common at old age. But if you have been foam rolling and training your body for flexibility focusing on quads and hamstrings you will be able to loosen up muscular tissues and would experience increased circulation in your body. You can opt for other stretching and warm-up exercises before running. Warm-up exercises before and after running are most important for athletes/runners of all age group.
- Focus on Health of Bones: With aging comes reduced bone-density. In order to deal with effects of aging it is best to focus on health of your bones beforehand. Make sure you have proper intake of calcium and vitamin D with dairy products, fish, broccoli, enough sun light and you may also take cod liver oil supplements.
- Proper Diet: Another important aspect that should be considered well is your diet. As you age, your body has reduced energy along with reduced lactic acid and other strength building nutrition. So make sure that you eat well. Keep an eye on what you are eating and avoid processed junk food rather opt for health natural foods. Your running session at morning and evening should begin with an intake of around 20-25 grams of carbohydrates so that you have enough energy to sustain running at old age. Your diet should have a mix of all; carbohydrates, proteinsand other essential nutrients.
- Listen to your Body: You may not be able to follow same speed at 50s as you were running with in your 20s or 30s. So if you need to slow down or stop between long distance runs, it is completely fine. Just listen to your body and do not overdo in order to maintain a specific pace or goal. Doing so would prevent your body from common running injuries
- Modify Training: Modify your training based on your experience. As you reach an old age with running, you have more knowledge and thus this enables you to make informed choices. So do that! Include a variety of different trainings such as cycling, skiing, swimming and others.
- Adjust Goals: Similar to your training adjustments, your old age may need you to adjust your goals too. Realize that you have entered an old age category of runners and you must not compete with those young athletes, rather set goals that are appropriate for your body and age. You can become part of new events, run new distance races and slow down but as long as you are in the game at an old age; it is going to be amazing.
- Time to Recover: At an old age, your body may need more time to recover than your earlier schedule. It may sometime become hard to get some rest while training and juggling with your busy work or home schedule. But this is important. Give your recovery period priority and take appropriate rest before getting back on the tracks. Take rest of some days or even take a break between sessions. Avoid overdoing any kind of training.
- Opt for Regular Massage: A regular massage can relieve pains, knots and tighten muscles and tissues. While you opt for a regular massage therapy with running at an old age, it would prevent you from injuries too.
- Motivate yourself: Motivation is an ingredient that would enable you to excel in your running career. Have goals so that you can keep yourself motivated with a new set of goals to achieve as you enter a new age group for running.
- Reduce Mileage: You may be running middle distance or long distance races but your age may now not allow you to run for a long distance. So don’t be afraid on cutting back the running mileage. If you need to cut down your mileage don’t be demotivated rather focus on improving your quality of training.
These are some helpful tips that would enable you to compensate and deal well with the decline that is result of aging in your body. Train and nurture your body well so that you can cope up with the needs of your body while you are running at an old age. Aging may affect your running performance but remember that a lot of old age runners are running marathons and are winning racing competitions. So don’t let the process of aging to demotivate you. Rather accept the new challenges that life of an athlete is offering you and make efforts so that you can gain positive results on this new competitive ground.