More muscles of the heart, and the

More muscles of the heart, and the

More than Just a Run Running a race well in track and field is not just going out and running, there are many things that go behind running a race. Track and field is often looked at as a sport that everyone can go out and do without training or any true commitment.

The first thing that goes behind running a race, whether it is a short distance or a long distance race is training. Training is a systematic process of repetitive, progressive exercise or work involving learning and acclimatization” (Payne 93) By training for an event you are able to increase the ability of the muscular system, the cardiovascular system, the endocrine system, the nervous system and also metabolism. There are many types of different training that a runner must do to be able to perform to his or her best ability. ”Athletes need speed, strength, endurance, flexibility and skill, but different events demand different levels of each, so training must be geared to the event, the athlete and developmental stage. (Payne 94) Speed is obviously a huge part in a race. But most people don’t know reaction time is also extremely important as well as movement time. This is “the time taken in the action of moving the limbs.

” (Payne 94) Basically this means how fast you can get your foot back on the ground after you have lifted it in between strides. This can be improved by a weight training program and by speed interval exercises. This leads to the next thing that is needed in training to run a race well, strength.Athletes’ level of strength affects so many other factors of their performance.

Speed and endurance can be increased by strength. For a runner to increase their strength, they must work on the three main types of muscle: “the smooth voluntary muscles forming the walls of vessels, the cardiac muscles of the heart, and the striated skeletal muscles that are under voluntary control. ” (Payne 98) Flexibility will also help with speed during a race.

An athlete must establish optimum flexibility to be able to improve their time. This may be worked on by different warm up exercises.Endurance is one of the main things needed in a distance race but it is also helpful in a sprinting race too. “Endurance is the capacity of the body to undergo prolonged activity.

” (Payne 102) This means how much and how long your body can take something. “Endurance depends on three physiological factors: oxygen uptake, lactate threshold, and efficiency. ” (Emmaus 151) To increase a person’s endurance you need to force your body to do something it is not used to.

This increases the stress on your body, but only for a short period of time and in the end will increase your endurance.Although training plays a huge part in a runner being able to run a race well, the mental side of running plays just as big of a part. A runners mind set is just as important as the training the runner does before a race. “When they runners start to struggle, they ease off the pace, regroup physically and push again.

” (Emmaus 184)Runners are able to realize what they need to do while actually in the race to perform to their best abilities. “The physical tactics for pushing on are as varied as the athletes who use them.Many are simply ploys, often outright chicanery, designed to convince the body that it isn’t on the verge of meltdown. ” (Emmaus 186) Another tactic for getting through the race is finding a “center”, only focusing on breathing, heart rate, and the movement of the body. Getting through the pain is not the only thing a runner should mentally work on. They should also mentally run through the race. This is called a mental practice and should be done before the runner’s race.

They should think about exactly how to run the race and what they would like the result of the race to be.Whether that is the place they want to get or the time they wish to finish, or both. They should also think positively before and during the race.

“Mental states such as fear, anxiety, and tension do influence the muscle action potentials. ” (Doherty 229) If a runner goes in to a race thinking they will not succeed or make the time they wanted they will not. That is why the mentality of the runner is just as important as the training itself. Running track and field is much more than just going out and running a race.The training and practice of speed, strength, endurance, skill and flexibility, along with the mindset of the runner are the key things to running a race well.

Without these the runner would not be able to succeed. A runner must be mentally and physically committed to the sport to be able to achieve their set goals. Works Cited Doherty, Ken. Track and Field; a complete guide for coach and athlete. Swarthmore: Tafmop Publishers, 1996. Emmaus, Pa. Runner’s World Complete Book of Running: Everything You Need to Know .

New York: Rodale Press, 1997. Payne, Howad. The Science of Track and Field Athletics . London: Pelham Books, 1981.

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