Athletics Magazine

Tips for Runners: A to Z

By Brisdon @shutuprun

You’ve probably already read and tried every tip/trick in the running handbook, but just in case you haven’t, here are 26 more.

Next week I might do the Greek alphabet of running tips to keep you on your toes. Θ  Σ φ µ ß π!!!

Tips for Runners: A to Z

A: Against traffic. Always run on the left side of the road (unless you’re in one of those other countries). This way you can see what’s coming and jump out of the way into a ditch before you get hit.

B: BYOT Bring Your Own Toilet Paper (or tequila). You never know what can happen between point A and point B of your run. What you do with the used TP is your problem.

C: Clean out the pipes. Lots of runners have G.I. distress. Minimize this by dropping the kids off at the pool before you head out. If you can’t, then don’t forget letter “B” above.

D: Downhill running. Keep your strides short. Don’t lean back. Let gravity be your friend and fly.

E: Energy. For longer runs consume about 25-50 g of carbs per hour depending on our size. For runs less than 75 minutes, don’t bother.

F: Focus on yourself and your goals. Don’t compare yourself to others. You’ll only be depressed. Do your own thing. Your race your pace. Remember there will always be someone faster than you and someone slower than you. Move on.

G: Get dressed. This simple act alone can increase your motivation to run. Action before feeling, right?

H: Have a goal. The key to staying motivated is to have something to work for. Sign up for a race. Aim to run a certain distance or pace. Tell yourself you will run 3 times per week for an entire year. Just come up with something for God’s sake.

I: Invite a friend. Even if you prefer to run solo, there will be times when having a running buddy holds you accountable and motivates you. This is also someone with whom to  solve the world’s problems and keep watch for you while you pee behind a bush.

J: Jump a size or a half size. When buying running shoes, take into account that your feet will swell when you run. Buy shoes a half to a full size larger than your regular shoes.

K: Keep tabs on mileage. Replace shoes every 300-500 miles. Or when you can afford it.

L: Loosen your hands/fists. Run as if you have a potato chip in your hand and are trying not to crush it. Don’t eat it. This will keep tension loose in your neck and shoulders. It will also prevent you from wasting energy on balling up your fists (but you might waste more energy on craving potato chips).

M: Mileage. Increase it no more than 10% per week.

N: Never trust a fart. ‘Nuf said.

P: Protein! Make sure to eat 15-20 grams of protein within 30 minutes of a run over an hour. This will help repair muscles and aid in recovery.

R: Rest well. Take recovery days seriously. If something hurts, let it rest for a day or two.

S: Screw yourself. Put screws in the bottom of old-ish running shoes tip increase traction (DIY tutorial HERE)

T: Treadmill runners. Set the incline at 1%-2% to simulate outdoor running.

U: Uphill running. Lean into the hill, but don’t hunch over. Keep a quick cadence. Try not to cry.

V: Variety is the spice of life. Change up your running routes by running a favorite course in reverse, heading out to the trails or finding a new route on

W: Warm up, then stretch. If you stretch on cold muscles, you run the risk of pulling something. Ouch! My groin! Instead warm up for a mile or so and then do some gentle stretching.

X: Safety first (because nothing begins with “x”). Be aware of your surroundings. Tell people where you are running. And, go HERE for more running safety tips.

Y: Yaktrax. Try these to increase traction when you run.

Z: Zebra. Always wear black tights and shorts. Always. This will camouflage any unexpected accidents. Wearing white up top is fine.


What’s your best running tip?

How about one that begins with X or Z?


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