I’m a nutrition major and runner living in Beirut. I’m currently running university varsity track, and I also love to swim and play soccer and badminton. My usual running races are 100m and 200m sprints, but sometimes I’ll do some longer distances just for the experience.
I usually mix swimming with my regular track practice schedule, and so far I’m loving it!
When I started swimming, I thought it would burn me out and make me more tired at practice, but I was surprised to find that it’s helping me quite a lot! I feel that my endurance is picking up, and I’m less tired at the end of my usual running warm up. Even when I’m running sprints, I feel that I can breathe a bit easier, push harder, and last longer during practice. And of course, relaxing in the water after a tough sprint training day never hurt anyone ;).
Right now I have two main upcoming competitions: a 7Km in the Beirut marathon on November 10th, and a sprint competition from November 14th till 17th, in which I’ll be running an individual 400m and two sprint relays.
Having two competitions so close makes it hard to find that balance between staying at my peak and not training to over exhaustion. For the next two weeks, my main goal for track is to maintain my current state of fitness without being too tired to race at my top speed.
That’s where swimming comes in!
I’ll have lighter than usual track practices to make sure that my legs aren’t tired for my race days, so to keep my heart strong, I’ll mix in some lighter but longer swims. I’m looking at alternating one day of track with one day of swimming, that way my muscles will be mobilized but fresh for racing.
For this week, I’m planning three swimming days. The first will be 3Km of slow freestyle laps. The second will be a short, 1Km swim focused mostly on legs, and the third will be 2Km of freestyle laps. This will keep up my endurance without putting too much impact on any of my muscles.
The last day before my races, I like to run an easy two laps around the track, just enough to warm up so that I can do a good 20-minute-stretching session, then I go for a nice walk ‘n talk with a friend to clear my mind and mentally prepare for the race. I recommend this pre-race day to anyone who is running in the marathon! It has really helped me with competitions over the past year because it keeps my muscles mobilized while still allowing me to rest well for my race.
I’ll be updating you guys soon on how the races and trainings went.
A special good luck to everyone running in Beirut Marathon this Sunday!by