Stamina is your level of endurance and how long you can exert in physical activity and keep going before you give out due to exhaustion. The fact is that if you do not exercise often or engage in cardio activities, your stamina will be very low. The good news is that your stamina can improve within 2 to 3 weeks of regular training. One of the best ways to increase your endurance level is by running – to improve your stamina with running.
While many other activities such as rowing, kickboxing, swimming, etc. will improve your stamina, running is probably one of the most effective methods because the human body has evolved to run.
Let’s look at 5 ways to increase your stamina with running. You can only improve by challenging yourself. If you run at the same pace and the same distance daily, your body will quickly adapt, and you’ll see no improvement.
The human body is highly efficient, intelligent and very adaptable. You’ll need to keep changing the variables to challenge it and force it to improve.
Increasing your speed
If you’re running at a moderate pace daily, it’s time to increase the speed. Initially, you’ll get exhausted quickly and may find yourself unable to complete the distance you normally cover during training.
For example, if you run 2 miles at a moderate pace, you may discover that you can only complete one mile if you run fast. After that, you’re too exhausted to carry on running. That’s fine. Just walk the rest of the way.
The next time, you can try running further. The goal is to be able to run the 2 miles at a faster pace and complete it in a shorter time.
Increasing your distance
If you’re used to running 2 miles, increase the distance to 2.5 or even 3 miles. The more distance you cover, the better your endurance will be. Ideally, you should aim to increase speed, then distance.
Using weights and inclines
All running becomes more challenging when you’re going uphill. Find the slopes and run up those. You’ll be exhausted. It gets even tougher if you try sprinting uphill.
If you wish to take things up a notch, try wearing weight belts or ankle weights while running. This will add resistance training to your running and make it more challenging.
The military usually makes soldiers run with backpacks and their skeleton battle order to improve their cardiovascular fitness. If you can run with weighted gear on you, you’ll breeze through when you have no gear on. There’s a world of difference in the level of difficulty.
Interval training is fantastic when used with running. Start training with sprints. Run as fast as you can for as long as you can, and then slow down and jog at a moderate pace. Do that again when your breathing returns to normal.
As you get better, aim to sprint for 45 seconds and rest for 15 seconds. Even 5 repetitions of this are enough to leave most people exhausted. This is high-intensity interval training and one of the best ways to improve your stamina.
You may be surprised to see walking on this list. How in the world does walking help with running?
If you’re obese or generally unfit, you may not be able to run long distances. In situations like these, you should go walking. While walking you can try to run for about 10 to 15 seconds. The moment you need to catch your breath, slow down and keep walking.
If you’re walking for 30 minutes, you may be able to do these short running spurts about 10 to 15 times. It may not seem like much, but you can rest assured that your stamina is improving.
Over time, you’ll make progress and be able to run slightly longer distances. Keep working at it until you reach a level of fitness where you can run. Walking is an excellent form of exercise too and can act as a bridge to go from unfit to the super fit.
Use these 5 tips in your running training and watch your stamina improve by leaps and bounds. Endure the pain and you will enjoy the gain. Keep going.