. . .



By Columnist Ron Byland – USATF, RRCA and Lydiard certified Running Coach:


Photo Credit: iStock Images: Running at Your Best Form –

Happy November. While a lot of us here in the middle part of the United States are closing out our racing season, there are plenty of you out there just beginning your training for your goal race in 2017.

Over my coaching career, I’ve worked with runners ranging from beginners to Olympic calibre athletes. Over this time, there are certain issues which always come up regardless of the race distance or the runners’ ability. In the past, I’ve written about doing the little things for big personal records (PRs). I firmly believe that when you work to eliminate or reduce mistakes in your training, then you’ll have a much better chance of setting yourself up for success and PRs in your upcoming races.

10 Mistakes To Eliminate From Your Running

#1 Be honest with yourself about your ability and goals. Do you want to run a 5:00 mile or a 4:00 marathon? Do you have the leg speed to run:75 400’s or 26.2 miles at 9:10 pace? Also, do you have the time to commit to the training needed to accomplish these goals? Be honest with yourself, it might take you six months to several years, break the training into manageable goals. You’ll get there.

#2 Doing the training you need vs. the training you like to do. Too many runners won’t vary their workouts and then expect to race faster. You still need to do a longer run training for the 5K, and you need to do speed work training for the marathon.

#3 Pick a training program and stick with it. Or better yet, hire a coach, and stick with the plan through to your goal race. Then, go back and review what worked and what didn’t. The runners that come to me for coaching say that one of the biggest reasons and challenges, why they sought out a coach, is trying to figure out what to do and when to do it over the course of training. Don’t incorporate several different plans and try to combine them, it rarely ever works.

#4 Slow down and you’ll get faster. I’ve said this to every runner I’ve ever worked with, “To get faster you need to slow down!” So many athletes never recover from their fast workouts, and probably don’t run them fast enough because they run their recovery runs too fast. This approach leads to overall fatigue, frustration and possible injury. The majority of your training should be recovery runs.

#5 Work on your endurance. Day in/day out, week in/week out and month after month focus on building a better you. As the saying goes, “Rome wasn’t built in a day,” nor is your endurance. Spend weeks, months and even years to work on your endurance; you’ve got to have a big V8 engine under the hood to help carry your speed through your entire race.

#6 Cross Train. I encourage every one of my runners to strength training and least once a week, and this is full body strength training. Yes, we run with our legs, but it’s important to work ALL the muscles to ensure we don’t break down and get hurt. Remember there is sport specific cross training and non-specific; don’t be afraid to incorporate both into your training.

#7 Massage work. I highly recommend that if and when possible you include a deep tissue massage into your training to help with circulation, recovery and break up any scar tissue caused by training.

#8 Running Shoes. I’m constantly reminding my runners that running shoes today last for approx. 300-400 miles for most people. When I read their workout logs and see comments about knees, ankles, backs, etc. hurting the 1st thing I ask is how old are their shoes. And my suggestion is to always go to a Run Specialty store for a gait analyst. Just because you read in a magazine or online that the “best” model running shoe on the market is XYZ brand, doesn’t mean that it will work for you.

#9 Eat healthy foods. While I am not a licensed nutritionist, over the years I’ve worked with people that ate junk every meal or on the flip side eat great food, but neither were eating for the training they were doing. Without keeping the tank full, you’ll never run to the best of your ability solely off of just your training.

#10 Be patient. One of my favourite saying is, “Patience Grasshopper!” So many runners are in such a hurry with their training, it’s not an overnight process. While 12-16 weeks might be enough time to make it across the finish line, it is the months and years of work that will help you achieve your biggest goals. I’ve only been running for 50+ years, but I believe that 2017 will be one of my best!

I hope you have a great month of training and I’m looking forward to discussing your running with you in next month’s article. And as always, if I can be of any help with your training goals, please don’t hesitate to contact me and we’ll put together a plan to make 2017 the best of your career.

See you on the roads

Coach Ron

About Our Marathon News and Review Columnist

Ron Byland HeadShotBackground

  • USATF, RRCA & Lydiard Certifications
  • 25+ Years coaching experience
  • 30+ Years of Competitive racing
  • Coached runners of all levels from beginner to Olympic caliber runners
  • Founder & coach of Minneapolis based Mile To Marathon Run Club

Mile To Marathon Coaching Options

  • Mile To Marathon Coaching Options
  • Customized Personal Training Program
  • Personal One-on-One Training Sessions
  • Virtual Training
  • Corporate Run Programs for 5 -500 runners
  • Couch To 5K Programs
  • Corporate Speaker

MileToMarathon Logo

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

Follow us on Twitter for more news, tips and inspiration.

Explore our Pinterest boards.

Don’t forget to leave us a comment.

We like to hear what you have to say🙂


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


InShape News Pages

%d bloggers like this: