If you've been running and racing for any length of time, or even if you're just starting out you've likely looked back on races or workouts trying to figure out what you could have done better. We polled Team Caterpy Ambassadors and asked them if they could give their beginner athlete-selves any piece of advice what would it be? Of course Caterpy No Tie Shoelaces made the cut, but what follows is authentic advice from a seasoned group of athletes:
Hire a Running Coach
Running is such an approachable sport, you buy sneakers and you put one foot in front of the other. Simple right? Did you know you can actually do it wrong? Savage Race extraordinaire Chrissi Shewchuck, suggests that if you are interested in running or other endurance sports to hire a coach. Don't develop bad habits (that could injure you later on) before you even start.
Get Professionally Fitted for Shoes
Here's how it usually goes: you decide to sign up for a race, you need shoes. Maybe you peruse online retailers, get some suggestions from your runner friends, and of course do some cost comparison. Boston Marathoners Melissa Malani and Charisse Winter, recommend heading to a run specialty store to get professionally fitted for shoes that are right for your body, gate and feet. While you're at it, customize your shoes even further with a pair of Caterpy no tie shoelaces to maximize your shoe's potential. Bonus, when you purchase from a run specialty store, you're often supporting local business!
Big Changes Don't Happen Overnight
Ultramarathoner Eric Kienle, Endurance Athlete Jessica Wong, and accomplished Marathoner Ashley Casano all remind us that big changes don't happen overnight. Consistency is key, Enjoy the work! One day you'll cross a finish line with an unbelievable time and look back with pride.
You do You
In the sports of running and endurance racing it's easy to get caught up in the comparison game. Portland based marathoner and overall happy runner, Stephanie Seiler says, "Your pace is the right pace for YOU!" Ironman Triathlete Dana Sutherland adds to that and encourages us to learn about heart rate training. Using heart rate training allows you to strategically find your "right pace" and build a plan to improve it (if that's what you want to do).
If you Run, you're a Runner
Probably the piece of advice we can all agree on, but often times need reminding of is that if you run, you're a runner. Tenacious endurance athlete Gelcys Castaneda, and hard core adventurer Brad Park, say to just relax, enjoy the process, and don't be so hard on yourself. It's easy to critique each workout, but enjoying the process is just as, if not more important than nailing every workout.
Hind Sight is 20/20 (that has a whole new meaning now doesn't it?). We all have experiences we look back on and critique in hopes of making the next, similar experience a smidge better, but take it from these seasoned pros to not only work smart (and hard), but enjoyable as well.
Interested in being a Caterpy Ambassador? Be sure you are following our social media channels (@caterpy) for ambassador application announcements, promos, and more!