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Five Ways to Improve Your Running Right Now

Become a better runner in no time with these five ways to improve your running right now!  Get more helpful posts from this weeks Running Coaches Corner and join the link up!

Make sure you enter to win a free bib to run one of the top 10 tourist destinations in the world at the Magnificent Mile Half Marathon and 5K!

Last day to get 10% off your purchase at JLab using code SUZLYFE. Find out why I recommend the Epic 2 Wireless Earbuds.

Five Ways to Improve Your Running Right Now

Become a better runner in no time with these five ways to improve your running right now. Get more helpful posts from this weeks Running Coaches Corner at http://suzlyfe.com/five-ways-improve-your-running-now-coaches-corner-26

We are a bit far into the summer training season to be implementing big picture changes that will have a positive impact on our current running and any upcoming races. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t improve your running RIGHT NOW in such a way that will have major dividends for you in the next few months as well.

Give Your Muscles a Proper Warm Up and Recovery

I include a proper warm up in all of my clients plans, and I discuss glute activation with all of them. But before you even get to the warm up and dynamic stretches, I like my runners to start with self myofascial release (aka foam rolling or using a lacrosse ball) to release and prep the muscles. I prefer for them to start with foam rolling and simple sun salutations to get limbered up, and then a warm up at a very easy pace, dynamic stretches and activations, and then their workout. If you don’t have enough time, at the very, very least do your activations and start with a gentle run and then dynamic stretches. 

Lazy legs up the wall pose on the couch after a long run. Suzlyfe

After your run? I’ve got you covered on that one with these posts on Optimal Muscle Recovery and the Five R’s of Post Run Recovery.

Prevent Injury with Prehab Exercises that Target Your Glutes and Core

I take prehab very seriously! Last week, I delved deep into runner specific unilateral glute and core exercises, and everyone who subscribes to my Coach Suz Letter automatically gets access to favorite hip and ankle strengthening exercises and glute activation drills. It is never too late to start strengthening and activating those muscles–the glutes are the major drivers for all runners, and not only strengthening them but also learning to activate the glutes will help prevent injury particularly on long runs. 

Prevent Injury and Boredom during Long Runs With these exercises! Learn more at suzlyfe.com and find out the five ways to improve your running right now

Meanwhile, a strong core holds you together–literally! And a strong core is more than just abs! You need to work the entire core, from transverse abdominis to obliques to lower back. Get that core involved, and you will see MAJOR results, and also prevent injury!

GO TO SLEEP

Seriously. Sleep is, in my opinion, as necessary as the prehab exercises or the warm up or cool down. Sleep preps you for the next day and help you recover from the previous one. Sleep is where champions are made. You can quote me on that. So get some sleep. Prioritize it.

 Suz loves naps

Do a Nutritional Audit with a Food Journal

And if you don’t know what you are looking at/for, get someone who does! There is a great deal of nutritional information out there, but your best bet is to go with a Registered Dietitian. That said, there are several principles that are generally agreed upon by experts around the world: a diverse, colorful diet filled with whole grains, lean proteins (whether plant or animal based), healthy fats, low in added sugars, and consisting as much as possible of whole foods.

Tuna Nicoise Salad at Standard Market Grill in Lincoln Park Chicago. Delicious and healthy! @Suzlyfe

Every one has different needs and a their own unique perfect diet, and it might take some time to discover what that is. But write down everything that you have eaten over the past few days, and if you aren’t getting multiple servings of unadulterated vegetables (sorry, California, pizza doesn’t count) every day, if you are having more than one convenience food from a package every time that you eat, if you are consuming a diet full of chemicals rather than ingredients… well, I can tell you where to start. 

What can YOU do to improve your running right now? Coach Suz explains #runchat #fitflential Click To Tweet

Do a Training Audit with A Training Log

Are you just not seeing any results? Look at the scope of your training, not just the day to day. Like with the food journal, sometimes we just need to see everything together to realize that the story isn’t making since. You might have too many, or too few, workout days in there. You might not be doing enough cross training, or you might be doing too much cross training and not enough running. You might even need to take a day off from running, or even exercise in general, and just let your body take a break. Or it might be time to get serious.

These girls mean business!

These girls mean business!

Like with your food journal and talking to an RD, it might be time to ask an expert!  A running coach will give you the individualized attention that you need to make changes now that will drastically improve your running, both short term and long term. (Wondering what a running coach does?)

Interested? Let’s talk training–you don’t have to be training for a race, or even have major mileage. I have worked with runners from ultramarathoners to runners just coming back to running after a long hiatus. If you are interested in getting after those health, fitness, and running goals, I would love to talk to you! Check out my coaching page or send me an email at coachsuztraining (Gmail)

Are you ready to achieve your health, fitness and running goals? Join me at Coach Suz Training, and let me help you live beyond expectations! I am a NASM Certified Personal Trainer and RRCA Running Coach, Boston Marathon Qualifier, and Crohn's Disease Thriver who will help you get where you want to go. http://suzlyfe.com/coach-suz-training

Now it is time to link up with Rachel, Lora, and Debbie for Running Coaches Corner!

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I am also linking up with Patty, Erika, and Marcia for Tuesdays on the Run, Nicole, Annmarie, Michelle, and Jen for Wild Workout Wednesday, Courtney, Mar, and Cynthia for Friday Five. and Ilka and Angela for Food and Fitness Sunday.

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80 Comments

  • Reply Carla

    I’ve not yet really started training for a full marathon in April – – but the one thing I have already begun doing is working my core. I kid you not I think it had been a decade since I’ve done a plank (!) and I intuited just what you say above. I need a strong core to make it through the race

    August 31, 2016 at 5:03 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Yes you do, lady!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:34 pm
  • Reply Lisa @ Running Out Of Wine

    I haven’t been doing dynamic stretches all summer because I spend so much time with rehab and activation, and have only been sticking to easy running. That is definitely something I will have to add back in!

    August 31, 2016 at 5:36 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      They don’t even have to take much time! But I know you have so much going on already!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:34 pm
  • Reply Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious

    Nice tips! I feel like flute activation is missing with a lot of athletes not just runners and hip strengthening exercises. I’m all about the legs up on the couch or wall pose even when not running.

    August 31, 2016 at 6:14 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      So many hip strengtheners! People never do it or know how to!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:33 pm
  • Reply Kimberly Hatting

    Thanks to you, the foam roller and I have gotten reacquainted. Not that we ever broke it off, but we definitely are spending more time together 😉

    August 31, 2016 at 6:29 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Get dinner and a movie sometime 😀 Maybe a glass of whine ;D

      September 1, 2016 at 9:32 pm
  • Reply Gretchen

    So you’re saying if I sleep I’ll be fast? DONE (although I don’t look as beautiful as you when I sleep…I am NOT sharing those pics online ever.)

    August 31, 2016 at 6:32 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      That is probably the best picture of me ever sleeping. ANd I was on the Eurostar. and it was FREAKING HOT

      September 1, 2016 at 9:31 pm
  • Reply Annmarie

    As always, great tips Suz!

    August 31, 2016 at 6:41 am
  • Reply Julie @ Running in a Skirt

    Such good tips! I’ve got the sleep thing DOWN!!! #winning!!!
    Hope you’ll stop by and linkup your favorite post of the month for Best of Blogs today

    August 31, 2016 at 6:45 am
  • Reply Lauren

    great tips! Glutes and core are so important for runners!!

    August 31, 2016 at 6:57 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      So very important!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:28 pm
  • Reply Laura @ This Runner's Recipes

    Great tips! So the type A/organizer side of my personality is like, who doesn’t keep a food and training log already? But that is one of the best pieces of advice for runners, so they can continually assess their progress!

    August 31, 2016 at 7:20 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Hahaha you so type A 😀

      September 1, 2016 at 9:27 pm
  • Reply Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home

    I’m pretty bad about dynamic stretching. I usually just go out and run.

    August 31, 2016 at 7:22 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I do too, but I’ve had too many issues with hamstrings and I am trying to get better about it!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:27 pm
  • Reply Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner

    I’ve been slacking on the pre hab and rehab the last few weeks and I am starting to feel it. Good reminder.

    August 31, 2016 at 7:24 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      You will start to feel so much better if you do!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:26 pm
  • Reply Linda @ Veganosity

    I’ve been following the schedule you made for me to a T! The only thing I don’t like doing is dynamic stretching. People look at me like I’m crazy when I do the soldier march down the street-haha!

    Yesterday was my first 18 miler and I started feeling queasy at mile 14, probably because it was so freaking humid!! I pushed through and my running app hit 18 miles at my neighbors mailbox. Not realizing that you shouldn’t stop abruptly after a long and exhausting run, which I did because I was so happy to be done, I threw up on my lawn, in one of my garden beds, and on my driveway next to the garage door. I felt much better once my stomach emptied out but it was definitely a Linda Blair/Exorcist moment. I hope my neighbors didn’t see me-haha! Lesson learned, NEVER make an abrupt stop, ALWAYS slow down to a slow jog or a fast walk to allow the blood to reach your stomach. Other than that, my compression socks really helped and my legs feel great. 🙂

    August 31, 2016 at 7:37 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Ugh, that is a stinker of a way to end it! Yeah the humidity has been very high of late, and you need to be careful. How are you feeling now?

      September 1, 2016 at 9:25 pm
  • Reply Jessica Marie

    These are great! I’m really starting to notice that a lot of people have been talking about muscle activation lately and I totally “get it” now! I can tell that I can lift more weights for longer if I’ve got my muscles warmed up as opposed to when I lift cold, straight out of bed.

    August 31, 2016 at 8:23 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Isn’t is amazing?! You never understand until all the sudden they turn on and it is like OH OK

      September 1, 2016 at 9:24 pm
  • Reply Jen @ Pretty Little Grub

    Great tips. I’ve been working hard on my glute and core strength to get ready for marathon training because I know just how important it is.

    August 31, 2016 at 8:26 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      It really makes an incredible difference!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:23 pm
  • Reply Lesley

    I’ve got the sleep part covered :-p I’ve always enjoyed sleep, and I don’t know how people can go with minimal sleep. I could never do that. I need at least 7 to be functional.

    August 31, 2016 at 8:35 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I don’t know how they do it either. Beyond me!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:22 pm
  • Reply Kelli @Hungry Hobby

    Great tips! In the past I wasn’t so good at prehab exercises but now I do them like my life literally depends on them!

    August 31, 2016 at 8:40 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      They seriously make such a difference!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:22 pm
  • Reply Suzy

    I super sonic love the pic of you sleeping on the plane. It’s golden!

    August 31, 2016 at 9:00 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      That was actually on the Chunnel Eurostar on our way to Paris. DAMN SEXY ON OUR HONEYMOON

      September 1, 2016 at 9:21 pm
  • Reply Ange // Cowgirl Runs

    Step one: run? hahahaha
    Seriously, though, glute and core is so important!

    August 31, 2016 at 9:40 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Hey, the running part is difficult 😀

      September 1, 2016 at 9:20 pm
  • Reply Ilka

    All great tips Susie! How I wish this could make me a 3:30 marathoner like you! 🙂 Thanks for the link-up! Happy Running!

    August 31, 2016 at 9:47 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you for linking up, Ilka!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:20 pm
  • Reply Jess run pink

    Excellent post!! And you know, I’ve been readin a book called Running with the Kenyans and all they do is eat, sleep, and rest. They say rest is crucial! Funny thing is most of us work for a living but they say that working makes them too tired to run. Ha. So let’s all quit our jobs and we will like Kenyans! 😉

    August 31, 2016 at 9:52 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      OMg best idea ever??

      September 1, 2016 at 9:19 pm
  • Reply Debbie @ Coach Debbie Runs

    Great tips! I don’t know how much better I’ll get at this point, but I know that all of these tips will keep me healthier too.

    August 31, 2016 at 9:53 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Hey, if nothing else, they will help you stay well!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:17 pm
  • Reply shawna

    I love sleeping. Like, LOVE it.

    August 31, 2016 at 9:59 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Isn’t it lovely?

      September 1, 2016 at 9:17 pm
  • Reply San

    Warm up is so important. I get lazy sometimes and just want to hit the track and start running… but it’s never ever a good idea.

    Also: sleep FTW! 🙂

    August 31, 2016 at 10:25 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Oooo especially not for speed work..

      September 1, 2016 at 9:16 pm
  • Reply Janelle @ Run With No Regrets

    Great tips! I had a tough run yesterday and I’m wondering if not having enough sleep had anything to do with it? I Love using a training journal!

    August 31, 2016 at 10:27 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      It very well may have! I often include if I’ve had a bad night of sleep in my journal

      September 1, 2016 at 9:16 pm
  • Reply Michelle

    Great tips. I really need to start running more again. I miss it. And sleep? What is that? LOL

    August 31, 2016 at 11:15 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I have to imagine that you crash HARD at night!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:15 pm
  • Reply Nicole @ Fitful Focus

    I love my Coach Suz runner warm-up! It helps me get all limber before heading out the door vs just starting on cold muscles. woot!

    August 31, 2016 at 12:37 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Doesn’t it totally help??!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:14 pm
  • Reply Emily

    I totally love how you made an emphasis on analyzing and auditing what you are already doing. Sometimes I don’t step back enough to look at what I’m doing already and see what things need to be changed.

    August 31, 2016 at 12:50 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      In all aspects of life!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:14 pm
  • Reply Rachel

    Sleeeeeeeeeep!

    August 31, 2016 at 3:01 pm
  • Reply Jo @ Living Mint Green

    Yer my fav running blog. Thanks for being my cyber coach/teacher. I may hire you someday if/when I decide to get serious about training for something again.
    I’m currently sitting on a tennis ball because my glutes are full of *%*% <– those are knots

    August 31, 2016 at 4:58 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      AW THIS MAKES MY LIFE.
      And yes to sitting on that ball. YOU SIT ON THAT BALL GIRL

      September 1, 2016 at 9:12 pm
  • Reply Tricia Vaughn

    We often forget about sleep being so important! I know I try and fit everything in but if I don’t get my sleep what I do fit in is going to suck major! Thanks Suz! Sharing!

    August 31, 2016 at 5:01 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you, Tricia! ANd you know that life falls apart without sleep!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:11 pm
  • Reply Jess @hellotofit

    GURL you know I’d second the pre-hab point – GLUTES ALL DA WAY.

    August 31, 2016 at 5:47 pm
  • Reply Anna @ Piper's Run

    Love this, it’s a keeper! I love my foam roller, we are best friends. Glute and core work is what I’m all about at the moment. Improving my running right now would mean I would be allowed to run, ha ha! Great tips Suz!

    August 31, 2016 at 7:41 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I wish you could! How I wish you could!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:08 pm
  • Reply Hannah

    Sleep is my favorite tip! For running, and also for life.

    August 31, 2016 at 9:47 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      hahaha cheers to that!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:07 pm
  • Reply Andy Atari

    Awesome tips! Running is largely about the legs and glutes, so it makes sense that we should keep on strengthening these parts of the body when we’re not out on a run.

    August 31, 2016 at 10:39 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Definitely! It will make such a difference for you!

      September 1, 2016 at 9:07 pm
  • Reply Kristy from Southern In Law

    I am reaaaaaaaaaaaallly bad with warming up so this is a much needed reminder!

    September 2, 2016 at 2:00 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      DO IT IT IS WORTH IT

      September 8, 2016 at 2:54 pm
  • Reply lacey@fairytalesandfitness

    Sleep is something I do not get near as much as I’d like to. I need to start prioritizing that.

    September 2, 2016 at 1:22 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      It is one of the best ways to stay injury free!

      September 8, 2016 at 2:36 pm
  • Reply Helly on the Run

    This is a great post and I learned a lot of these when I got injured. Now it’s def a “prehab” thing and something I make sure to focus on.

    The diet part not so much. I need help on that part, lol!!!

    September 2, 2016 at 3:45 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Hey, we all do–but the good news is that you can even do little tweaks to improve it!

      September 8, 2016 at 2:36 pm
  • Reply courtney @ eat pray run dc

    SLEEP! Matters SO much – I’ve tried to be conscious about getting enough but it cane tough!

    September 3, 2016 at 5:42 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      And people are just like, sppppsh sleep. UM DON”T GIVE ME THAT GIVE ME MY SLEEP

      September 8, 2016 at 2:26 pm
  • Reply Monday must-reads! - Apron Strings and Sticky Fingers

    […] ways to improve your running right […]

    September 4, 2016 at 3:46 pm
  • Reply Marcia

    Each of these is so important, yet to easy to blow off too. Running seems simple but there’s so much that goes into doing it WELL!

    September 6, 2016 at 6:01 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Such a freaking art!

      September 8, 2016 at 2:04 pm
  • Reply Montana @ Pretty Lil Mudder

    My nutrition sucks…but I really don’t have time to do much food prep. And I really mean don’t have time. What I need is a close, local, healthy food pre-prepped meals. Something like FitLife foods (which is about an hour away from me). That’s really where it’s at…healthy food I don’t have to cook. Literally the best thing ever for people who work 16 hour days like me!

    September 6, 2016 at 2:20 pm
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