Once you've gotten your running legs and just running at all is no longer challenging, beating your personal record (PR) becomes the next holy grail for most runners. Striving to become faster than you were before is something that's always out there in front of you, and after the initial gains from being a new runner, shaving fractions of a second off can be tough to beat.
If you're struggling to beat your personal record, here are a few tips you can use to give yourself a boost.
Add Speed Work
You might not be a sprinter, but practicing your sprints could help you break your PR over much longer distances. Work up to 80 meter sprints, starting with shorter sprints until your body has adjusted to the new normal.
Sprinting helps your body train its muscles in a different way, learn how to bring oxygen and nutrients to the body faster, and increases your fitness in a different way. Even though you practice high speeds at a very short distance, it will cross over to 5ks and even marathons.
Add Uphill Work
Endurance and strength are also important for being able to run faster. A good way to practice this is by running hills. Running up a hill is hard work, strengthening your muscles, and making your body work harder. By practicing on hills, your body will find it much easier on race day, helping you to go faster.
There is another good reason to add uphill work to your routine. Uphill work also forces your body to work in a new way, which can help stretch your muscles and tendons, and make them more flexible. This may reduce your risk of injury and help you stay healthy on race day.
The more you force your body to exercise in different ways, the fitter it becomes. If you only ever run, your body gets used to running in a specific way. You can help break out of this through the previous switch ups in your routine we mentioned, but lifting weights is also a great way to help break your PR. Focus on training your legs and core.
You don't need to put on heavy muscles to make a difference, but doing a few squats might well be the difference between where you are now and a faster time.
There are lots of supplements out there promising the moon, but one that really could help with your PR is Cordyceps Extract. Cordyceps have been well proven in scientific studies to improve Vo2 max, ATP, and even your cholesterol. It's a natural supplement that will help you reach your optimum performance, and is not considered a drug.
If you're struggling to reach the next level with your performance, Cordyceps could be the key to that illusive PR.
For the most part, reaching a new PR involves training, dedications, and new routines. Don't be afraid to try something different in your routine to make things better.