The Royal Parks Half Marathon is one of the major highlights in every runner’s race calendar. It’s a flat and fast course with a huge crowd turnout, which means that at the Royal Parks Half Marathon, you’re almost guaranteed to run a PB. I ran my first ever half marathon last year at the Royal Parks and got my PB at another race earlier this year but I felt like I still had more to give. So I turned to TruBe on a quest to run a sub 1:40 minute half marathon and achieve a new personal best.
When it comes to running, I am actually quite disciplined in the sense that I can do the miles that my body needs to do and I lift weights to ensure my body is strong, but what I struggle with is getting in all of the other sessions that will help me become a better runner. Like yoga and pretty much any form of stretching. This in turn has limited my mobility and I have the tightest hamstrings in the world! This flagged up in a running assessment that I recently did so I knew that if I was going to run a half marathon PB, something had got to change. I needed to improve my mobility and flexibility as this in turn would improve my running efficiency.
What I love about TruBe is that along with their yoga and Pilates workouts, they also have stretching sessions which can be booked too! This meant that I was able to dedicate entire sessions to stretching out the muscles I use the most during running and I also learned which stretches worked best too. Long gone are the days where I considered touching my toes as the only hamstring stretch I needed! I now regularly perform what has been dubbed The World’s Greatest stretch (because it is) before runs and I have also added moves such as bear crawls and walk outs to my pre-running routine. It might sound strange stretching before a run but these stretches help to improve your mobility and essentially wake your muscles up so that when you actually start running, your body is ready.
Believe it or not, I didn’t even increase my mileage in the lead up to the Royal Parks Half. I continued with my usual workouts and runs. And instead of clocking up the miles as a bid to run faster, I started focusing on using mobility to get my body in PB shape.
Before I knew it, race day arrived and I crossed the finish line in 1:38. A 2 minute PB and well under my goal of running a sub 1:40 half marathon.
If you’re looking to run your first half or full marathon or even a 10km, make sure you have a good stretch and mobility routine in place. It’s something I completely overlooked and if you don’t know how to stretch or improve your mobility, book a session on TruBe to find out how. Your session will be completely tailored to your needs and you’ll walk away with exercises that you can do on a daily basis to help improve your running.