Having been thoroughly educated by our running experts in our last post prepping you for the OrthoCarolina 10k Classic in August, I hope you’ve been putting their advice to good use: listening to your body, but also hitting the pavement and getting your training time in.
With warmer weather and sunny skies on the horizon, there are plenty of opportunities to get outside and be active. But sometimes a long day at work, running errands, cooking dinner, going on a run, and somehow finding the time to come up for air and (dream big) relax a little is overwhelming and you have to prioritize. Speaking for myself, my evening run is usually the first thing on the chopping block.
Having a set time and location is sometimes all the accountability you need to meet your mileage goals. Enter the Running Clubs. Not having a formal registration process and being open to anyone willing to lace up makes these groups incredibly accessible. If you’re looking for a more defined schedule, Run for Your Life offers great local training programs with focuses on mileage and endurance. Charlotte Running Club also facilitates running buddy and training programs segmented by pace through their Facebook groups. But, if you’re looking for “flexible accountability” some of the amazing running clubs that meet throughout the week might be the answer for you!
“I need to be in NoDa for run club at 6:30” is a lot easier to hold yourself to than “I’m going to try to run tonight.” Try it! I promise you’ll find yourself not only running more consistently, but also looking forward to the infectious sense of community built at running events… and the high probability of a (well-deserved) post-run drink certainly doesn’t hurt either.
For those of you that are skeptical about mixing exercise and alcohol, don’t fret. It seems that a post-run brewski isn’t all bad. According to an article on Runner’s World, a beer after a run, some water, and a little food can help replenish electrolytes, carbs, and nutrients. GREAT NEWS! Just remember that moderation is key because- duh- although beer does have some good-for-you stuff in it, it is still alcohol and alcohol is bad. Sometimes very, very bad. For a no-fail plan for beer-ing after running:
For the electrolytes, good carbs, and nutrients, one pint should do the trick. A lot of beer-centric run clubs have popped up and gained popularity recently. Here are some local running clubs that offer libations after logging miles:
Most have multiple distance options ranging from the easy-peasy one mile run to the more advanced 5+ mile run. I personally have run Tuesdays with Running for Brews, Wednesdays with NoDa Run Club, and Thursdays with the Triple C Beer Runners and each club offers something different for everyone from the novice to the marathoner.
As Matt Himsey, OthroCarolina Physical Therapist, encourages, don’t run too far too fast. There is no shame in the one mile route at these clubs and I have partaken many a time after coming back from an injury. Let your body acclimate to the demand of running, whether you’re new to the sport or a recovering athlete. In the same sense, don’t increase your mileage too quickly from week to week.
Himsey also urges runners new and old to cross train to stay healthy. He encourages runners to get fit to run, and not to run to get fit. “Range of motion, strength, muscle activation, and flexibility are all important to preparing your body for running,” says Himsey. Each step while running loads your joints with 4-6 times your body weight- woah! Stretching, strengthening, and flexibility work help to decrease the damage.
I can’t wait to try some of the running clubs I haven’t been to yet! As always, give a wave and let me know you’re training with Scoop for the OrthoCarolina 10k Classic in August if you see me out and about.