How to warm up before a running session or a race?

warm up before running

Before engaging in a race or a training session, such as Maximal Aerobic Speed (MAS) or interval training, it is crucial to execute an adequate warm-up. A thorough warm-up readies the body for the upcoming physical exertion and aids in preventing injuries. Generally speaking, the shorter and more intense the activity, the more extensive the warm-up should be. For instance, it is advisable to allocate approximately thirty minutes for warming up before a MAS session. Conversely, a fifteen-minute warm-up is deemed sufficient prior to running a marathon, particularly when there is an anticipated prolonged wait at the starting line.

Phase 1: warm-up jog

The warm-up jog should proceed at a leisurely pace—ensure you can maintain a conversation throughout. Conserve your energy for the upcoming session or race 😉. The optimal duration ranges from 15 to 30 minutes, depending on how you feel. For those entering races exceeding 20km, a brief 10-minute jog may suffice. This stage aids in gently readying the body for the forthcoming exertion, with a particular focus on priming the cardiovascular system.

Phase 2: drills

You can opt for 3 straightforward exercises to execute: butt kicks, straight-leg marches, and high knees. These exercises are designed to prepare your muscles and tendons for the upcoming activity. For quick sessions or races, ensure you perform these brief drills, covering roughly twenty meters back and forth.

Phase 3: strides at race pace

You are nearly prepared for your race or training. The final step involves assessing your readiness with a few strides at race pace. Aim for 2 to 3 strides, each lasting approximately fifteen seconds. Once you feel adequately adjusted, you’re all set to begin!

Developing a solid warm-up routine for running

Ensuring a consistent practice of this warm-up sequence in your training before a race is crucial. Moreover, it’s wise to avoid experimenting with new routines on race day. The best approach is to weave these three phases into your training regimen ahead of every speed-focused session.

In situations where the wait time at the start line stretches beyond 30 or 40 minutes, allowing the body to cool down, consider reducing the jogging duration to 5 or 10 minutes and engage in dynamic stretching within the starting zone. For longer runs, it’s not imperative to undertake phases 2 and 3. Simply ensure that you begin with a gentle pace for the initial 15 minutes.

Wishing you a successful race or training session—enjoy! 😉 Seeking tips to enhance and take pleasure in your running training? RunMotion Coach, the digital coach, is at your service! This mobile application tailors its guidance to your level, availability, and goals, providing daily motivation.

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Mailis Durif-VarambonMailis grew up in the mountains, where she went hiking and biking every weekend. She loves outdoor activities where she can relax at the end of the day. At RunMotion Coach, she is responsible for communication management.