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Marathon Training Tips for Seniors

February 4, 2014

In recent years, participation rates in America’s major marathons have boomed among runners aged 50 and up. As these inspiring seniors cross the finish line, they are not only reaping health benefits, but are also showing the world that age need not be a barrier to physical achievement. Still, a marathon training program for a 60-year old will look different from one for a 30-year old.

Here are a few suggestions for seniors to keep in mind when beginning marathon training:

1. Check with your doctor. Before beginning a training program, get a full medical examination. Checking for and ruling out pre-existing conditions like heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes will help ensure that you are safe and healthy when starting to run.

2. Take a walk first. If you do not already lead an active lifestyle, it is best not to leap into full marathon training right away. Build up stamina and fitness levels by walking, and then gradually add in short bouts of running. It can help to target a 5K or 10K race first.

3. Value quality over quantity. Older adults need more rest days in between training days. Rather than running six or even seven days a week, it is usually best for seniors to run a maximum of three days a week.

4. Always warm up and cool down. Our muscles become more prone to injury as we get older. Careful warm-ups and proper cool-down and stretching sessions are an essential part of race training for senior runners.


From → Lois Pope

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