Workout Of The Day

I'm thinking of running a 5K tomorrow morning, so this impacts how I will choose to work out this afternoon.

There are generally two approaches when it comes to training for "race days." The first approach is what you should take if it is important to you that run fast and do well in the race. If you really care about the race, then your workout the day before should be relaxed and restful. You shouldn't run more than, say, 30 minutes, and it should be at a nice, easy pace. You shouldn't lift weights. You should stretch a lot and stay hydrated. In fact, speaking of hydration and related issues, you should spend all day drinking water and you should "carbo-load." (However, we diabetics must make pains to carb-load slowly, over the course of perhaps two or three days, and eating only low-GI carbohydrates.) You shouldn't work out too late in the evening, and you should plan to get plenty of sleep.

If you've been following the workouts all week - and all the previous week - then you know that I've been focused on building an endurance base. It would be wrong for me to take a road race seriously at this stage of training. But that doesn't mean it would be wrong to race at all. It helps to get some kind of benchmark 5K time on the books early in your training regimen so that you have a reference point. You can use your pace to help set goals, to help set pace targets while training, and so on.

In that case, you'll want to take a second approach to training for race days. Because you do not have to worry so much about running the fastest time of your life, you can focus on running the fastest time you can move yourself to do today. Show up to the race, get a good warm-up in. You can maybe even do as much as a two-mile warm-up for a 5K, as long as you run nice and easy. Then run the race as fast as you can. Then, do a nice cool down, maybe even another three miles. That will make your race day a long day and you'll still get a good 5K time out of the deal.

As for the day before - today, in other words - you can train right through it. If it's a weight-lifting day, lift some weights. Don't cut down on the mileage unless you're really feeling the miles you've already put in this week. In other words, business as usual. We can rest on Sunday.

Thus, today's workout is as follows:

  • 3 x 30 push-ups (normal, triangle, and incline push-ups, respectively)
  • 3 x 50 crunches (50 normal, and 50 on each side)
  • 3 x 15 seated cable rows
  • 40 minute run

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