When you go for your usual runs, do you find yourself grasping for breath? Is it difficult for you to run for a longer period without tiring yourself out? Do you want to run freely and participate in marathons and other sporting events? It’s time to improve your endurance and stamina! We’ve got you covered with tips that will help you increase your speed and improve your time duration while avoiding injuries.
Tips To Improve Endurance and Stamina
Endurance and stamina are the body’s ability to exert itself to its maximum without completely gasping for breath while being able to speak a sentence. There are certain tips and tricks to increase and build endurance and stamina.
- Maintain a Schedule: with 2-3 short distance runs and a long distance run at least once a week to acclimatize the body to run farther distances and to build Aerobic capacity. Then slowly try to increase the duration of the run by 1km per week or 0.5 km per week depending on your fitness levels. For instance, 2-3times, 5-8km runs in a week with one 10km run in the first week (this is for athletes who are at moderate level intensity). With increasing the distance by 0.5-1km per week for Long runs for a couple of months, followed with increasing the Speed needed to cover the same distance.
- A simple rule of thumb that can be followed here is the FITT (Frequency of exercise, Intensity of Exercise, Type of Exercise and Time duration needed to complete a distance) principle: Always increase the time duration first (of the long runs) in the first few weeks of training. Then increase the speed/intensity of the workout in the coming months of training. This trick helps in preventing any form of injury.
- Muscle Strengthening: For completing marathons in less time and improving speed and fitness, strengthening the core muscles and the lower body muscles is a necessity as doing only cardio will reduce the resistance in joints and muscles. The weight of the entire body lies on the legs and is supported by the core muscles. It would be great to sneak in a couple of days of weight bearing strength training into the schedule. But my advice would be try for more repetitions and lesser weights while doing strength training (avoid extremely heavy weights as the goal is to build on Muscular Endurance and strength and not become bulky).
- Nutrition: is as important as exercises for improving stamina. It can make or break a performance. 1-2 bananas or 12-15 grapes 20mins before a short run would be a great option or 1 bowl muesli with 1 banana and milk would be perfect 1-1.5 hours before a long run. Even 1-2 Idlis 1 hour before the workouts would be a perfect blend of Carbs, Proteins and Salt. A homemade Nimboo pani with pink salt and jaggery/sugar would be great to be carried for sipping during the runs or a coconut water or even an electoral would work the trick for long runs. 20-30mins post workout is the window of anabolic opportunity where max absorption of nutrients happens. Preferable to have post workout nutrition within 20mins of workout. Dates(4-5 in nos), Prunes(handful), Banana(1-2), Raisins(handful), Grapes(12-15 in nos), Watermelon(1-2 slices) along with a glass of Milk or Whey isolate or 2 (whites):1(yolk) eggs for proteins would be great. Even having your Breakfast rich in carbs-proteins immediately post workout (if a morning run) would work as a fantastic post workout meal.
- Recovery: No training or progression with any goal is complete without sufficient rest and recovery periods. Sleep, rest is essential to excrete toxin and lactic acid build up in the body. It is very important to also reduce the levels of the stress hormone Cortisol (which also increases with training), it helps in recovery of every cell and muscle in the body thereby enabling better performance.
Simple things like doing an active warm-up pre-workout and static cool down stretches post workout is essential to prevent any forms of injury and will indirectly help in building endurance and stamina.
We hope this article helps you improve your endurance and stamina. To read more about indoor workouts, check out Healthy Reads. For tips on weight/strength training, and to workout with our experts on a live session, subscribe for a GOQii Pro class within the GOQii App.
Don’t forget to leave your thoughts in the comments below!