What Are the Benefits of Walking and Running?
Who Can Train and Successfully Complete a 5K, 10K, or Half-Marathon?
Why Should You Follow the National Institute for Fitness and Sport’s (NIFS) Training Programs?
How Did NIFS Originate?
How Does NIFS Accomplish Its Mission?
What Is the NIFS Mini Marathon Training Program?
What Are the Unique Features of This Book?
2. Getting Started.
What Should You Consider Before Starting Your Training?
What Is the Importance of Setting Goals?
Specific and Clearly Defined Goals.
Attainable but Challenging Goals.
What Are Your Goals?
What Are Your Short-Term Goals?
What Are Your Intermediate Goals?
What Are Your Long-Term Goals?
How Are You Going to Accomplish Your Goals?
How Are You Going to Accomplish Your Short-Term Goals?
How Are You Going to Accomplish Your Intermediate Goals?
How Are You Going to Accomplish Your Long-Term Goals?
What Obstacles Might You Encounter in Your Quest to Accomplish Your Goals? How Can You Track Your Progress?
How Can You Use the Training Logs in This Book?
How Can You Use the Nutrition Logs in This Book?
3. Choosing Your Program.
How Do You Choose the Program That Is Best Suited for You?
Is a “Fitness Walking” Protocol Right for You?
Is a “Run/Walk” Protocol Right for You?
Is an “Experienced Exerciser” Protocol Right for You?
How Can You Determine Exercise Intensity?
How Can You Establish Your Target Heart Rate Ranges?
How Can You Use the Rating of Perceived Exertion Scale?
Can Pace Be Used in Conjunction with Heart Rate and RPE to Measure Walking and Running Intensity?
What Is Cross Training and Why Is It Important?
4. Safety Precautions.
How Do You Choose the Best Shoe for Running and Walking?
Clue #1: Fit, Fit, Fit.
Clue #2: Walking or Running Shoes? Which Is Best?
Clue #3: Shock Absorbency and Body Weight.
Clue #4: Foot Type (Pronation and Supination).
Clue #5: Wear and Tear.
Clue #6: Surface Differences.
Clue #7: Shoes to Choose Update.
What Safety Precautions Should Be Taken When Running and Walking in the Heat?
Stay Well Hydrated.
Prevention Is Key.
What Safety Precautions Should Be Taken When Running and Walking in the Cold?
Stay Well Hydrated.
Be Aware of the Wind Chill.
What Is the Key to Dressing for Success?
What Is the Best Way to Deal with Dog Encounters While Walking and Running?
Understanding “Dog Talk”.
5. Injury Prevention and Treatment.
How Can You Prevent the 13 Common Causes of Walking/Running-Related Injuries?
#3: Progression of Exercise Intensity.
#7: Body Fat Percentage.
#8: Exercising Surfaces.
#9: Choosing a Shoe.
#10: Safety Devices.
#11: Orthopedic Limitations.
#12: Inadequate Leadership/Poor Program Design.
#13: Returning from an Injury.
What Are Some of the Common Walking and Running Injuries?
If You Do Get Injured, What Should You Do?
R = Rest.
I = Ice.
C = Compression.
E = Elevation.
When to See a Physician.
Is More Training Always Better?
Misconceptions/Attitudes That Lead to Overtraining.
6. Proper Walking and Running Form.
What Is the Proper Fitness Walking Form and Technique?
What Leads to Improper Fitness Walking Form?
How Can You Optimize Fitness Walking Form?
What Is Racewalking?
What Is the History and Background of Racewalking?
What Is the Proper Racewalking Form and Technique?
How Can Racewalking Drills Improve Your Form?
What Is the Proper Running Form and Technique?
How Can You Optimize Your Stride Length?
How Can You Prevent Overstriding?
How Can You Maintain a High Stride Rate?
What Is the Proper Running Posture and Arm Swing?
What Is Vertical Oscillation?
How Should Runners Breathe?
How Can Running Drills Improve Your Form?
7. Warm-Up/Cool-Down and Flexibility Exercises.
What Is the Proper Way to Warm-Up and Cool-Down?
Why Is Flexibility Important to Runners and Walkers?
What Are Some Common Types of Beneficial Stretching Exercises for Runners and Walkers?
What Is Traditional Static Stretching?
What Is Active Isolated Stretching?
What Is Yoga?
How Do You Exercise for a Full-Body Stretching Routine?
What Are Four Basic Stretches for the Upper Body?
What Are Six Basic Stretches for the Lower Body?
8. Strength Training.
How Is Strength Training Beneficial for Runners and Walkers?
What Do You Need to Consider Before Starting a Strength Training Program? What Are Your Objectives?
Do You Have Any Medical or Orthopedic Concerns That May Be Worsened Through Strength Training?
How Much Time Do You Have Available Each Week to Strength Train?
What Are the Commonly Used Strength Training Terms?
What Is a Repetition?
What Is a Set?
What Is a Concentric Contraction?
What Is an Eccentric Contraction?
What Is Muscle Strength?
What Is Muscle Endurance?
What Is Progressive Overload?
What Are the Eight “Rules to Lift By?”.
How Can You Tailor a Strength Training Program to Fit Your Needs?
What Are Some Basic Strength Training Exercises You Can Perform at the Gym?
What Are Some Basic Strength Training Exercises You Can Perform at Home?
Standing Calf Raise.
Bent Over Row.
Standing Bicep Curl.
Prone Lower Back Extension.
How Can You Track Your Progress?
Do Yoga and Pilates Count As Strength Training?
How Can Yoga Improve Strength?
How Can Pilates Improve Strength?
What Are the Frequently Asked Questions Related to Strength Training?
Can muscular strength be maintained without training?
What is required to maintain muscular strength?
I am female. Will weight training make me look less feminine?
Will my muscles get the same size as a man’s?
Can muscle turn into fat and fat turn into muscle?
Can I spot reduce?
I am an avid runner. Will weight training make me bulky and decrease my running performance?
Will weight training decrease my flexibility?
9. What Should You Eat to Fuel Your Walking and Running?
Which Nutrients Are Important for Fueling Walking and Running?
Why Do Walkers and Runners Need Carbohydrates, Protein, and Fat? Why Do Walkers and Runners Need Vitamins and Minerals?
How Can You Incorporate Balance, Variety, and Moderation into Every Meal?
How Many Servings from Each Food Group Should You Consume?
What Are Examples of Meal Plans Based on Various Calorie Levels?
What Are Examples of Healthy, Energy-Packed Recipes?
Is It Possible to Dine Out and Eat Healthy?
What Should You Look for on the Menu?
Should You Ask for Menu Substitutions?
The Bottom Line: Dine Out Less and Eat In More.
10. Training and Competition Nutrition for Runners and Walkers.
Why Should You Eat Before Running and Walking?
What Kind of Foods Should You Eat Before Training or Racing?
When Should You Eat Before Training or Racing?
Why Should You Focus on Fluids?
What Function Does Fluid Have in Your Body?
What Is Hyponatremia?
How Much Should You Drink Before, During, and After Running and Walking?
How Do You Determine Your Individual Sweat Rate?
Now That You Know How Much to Drink…What Should You Drink?
Which Sport Supplements Are Appropriate During a Run or Walk?
Are Sports Drinks Necessary During Running and Walking?
What Are Energy Bars and When Should You Use Them?
What Are Energy Gels and When Should You Use Them?
What Are the Best Foods to Eat After Running and Walking?
What Fluids Should You Drink After Running and Walking?
Why Are Carbohydrates Important After Running and Walking?
Why Is Protein Important After Running and Walking?
Why Are Electrolytes Important After Running and Walking?
11. Mental Training and Motivation.
What Is the Foundation of Your Motivation to Walk or Run?
What Does It Mean to Be Motivated by Extrinsic Factors?
What Does It Mean to Be Motivated by Intrinsic Factors?
What Are Some Specific Motivational Tips to Keep You Moving in the Right Direction?
How Can You Be Motivated by Setting Goals?
How Can You Be Motivated by Your Program Design?
How Can You Be Motivated by Making Time to Exercise?
How Can You Be Motivated by the Buddy System?
How Can You Be Motivated by Your Attitude?
How Can You Be Motivated by Rewards?
How Can You Overcome Some of the Common Roadblocks to Happiness?
How Can You Avoid the Comparison Trap?
How Can You Avoid the Perfection Trap?
How Can You Avoid the Expectation Trap?
What Can You Do to Stay Motivated?
12. Racing Strategies.
What Should You Do to Prepare in the Last Week Before Your Race?
What Should You Consider a Week Before Your Race?
What Should You Consider Two Days Before Your Race?
What Should You Consider the Day Before Your Race?
What Are the Last Minute Preparations Before the Gun Goes Off?
What Should You Do to Prepare in the Hours Immediately Prior to the Race?
What Should You Do to Prepare in the Minutes Immediately Prior to the Race?
The Gun Has Gone Off–Now What?
What Do You Need to Know About Setting the Pace?
What Do You Need to Know About the Weather Conditions?
What Do You Need to Know About the Course?
What Do You Need to Know About Your “Body Talk”?
What Do You Need to Know About Your Mental Chatter?
What Do You Need to Know About the Finish Line?
What Is the Best Way to Recover from the Race?
A. Additional Resources and Logs.
Walking and Running Resources.
Fundraisers for Health.
Sports Nutrition Resources.
Training and Nutrition Logs.
Signed up for a half-marathon and not sure what you've gotten yourself into? Absolute Beginner's Guide to Half-Marathon Training: Get Ready to Run or Walk a 5K, 8K, 10K or Half-Marathon Race is an easy-to-understand introduction to the world of running half-marathon, or shorter, race. Endorsed by the National Institute for Fitness and Sport, this book is packed with illustrations, notes on how to stay motivated and tips on how to train without pain. It will guide you through your marathon-training program and show you how to find the appropriate clothing and shoes, prevent and treat injuries and warm-up before running. Even if you are walking a shorter distance, this is a beneficial training manual. So run, or walk, to your nearest bookstore and pick up a copy of ABG to Half-Marathon Training today!
Heather Hedrick is the assistant director of the Center for Educational Services within the National Institute for Fitness and Sport. She is a registered dietitian and has her Master of Science in Kinesiology. She completed her Bachelor of Science degree in dietetics as well as her Master of Science degree at the University of Illinois, Urbana/Champaign. Heather is certified by the American College of Sports Medicine as a Health/Fitness Instructor®. Heather's interests and extensive experience are in the areas of wellness, weight management, exercise programming, vegetarian nutrition, and sports nutrition, ranging from the recreational to the ultra-endurance athlete. At the National Institute for Fitness and Sport, she develops educational materials, implements programs, and delivers presentations to various groups on nutrition and fitness topics related to healthy eating, weight control, disease prevention, and improving athletic performance. Heather coordinates the National Institute for Fitness and Sport's Mini Marathon Training Program—a half-marathon training program for walkers and runners participating in the 500 Festival Mini Marathon, the nation's largest half-marathon. She routinely appears on local NBC, CBS, and cable television shows and news broadcasts to educate central Indiana residents on the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. She was the dietitian for the first team of four men aged 70+ to successfully complete the non-stop bicycle race, Race Across America. Heather has authored nutrition/fitness articles published in a variety of journals including Mechanisms of Ageing and Development and the ACSM Health & Fitness® Journal. She has been interviewed and quoted in Women's Day, Ladies Home Journal, and Newsweek magazines. Heather is also an accomplished triathlete, duathlete, and marathon runner, including qualifying and competing in the 2003 Hawaii Ironman.
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