Running during lockdown with many ideas has become a healthy trend. However, as this must not be done lightly, many doubts and questions arise among the population that wants to stay safely active.
In this article, we will be going through some of the best lockdown running ideas and protocols this way, you will feel safe going out to your morning training.
Is it really safe to go outside for a run?
First of all, while we should minimize the time we spend outside during quarantine, in most places it is allowed to exercise outdoors once a day.
In fact, we would even recommend going out for a run over indoor exercising, as the virus spreads easier in confined spaces. Naturally, this recommendation goes following a series of safety measures.
Wash your hands
At this point, it might sound like an overstatement, but hear us out. Obviously, you will wash your hands when you arrive back home, but what about BEFORE leaving?
Handwashing is one of the most effective ways to diminish virus transmission, so it’s one of the things to be more aware of before and after running during the lockdown.
Also, try to avoid coming in direct contact with high-touch surfaces. Some of these may be doorknobs, elevator panels, handrail doors, traffic buttons, as someone might have coughed or sneezed over them.
If it is unavoidable for you to touch such surfaces, never put your hands on your face afterward. Or even better, use your wrist or forearms instead of your hand.
Keep your distance
Again, we might sound like a broken record here, but keeping a prudent distance is one of the few ways we have to prevent the virus from spreading further.
Keep in mind that restrictions about the number of people allowed to gather in a determined amount of space vary from one place to the other.
keeping at least 6ft in between. Also, try not to run one behind the other.
This last bit might sound a little strange but is based on the increased amount of breath released when we run, which increases the potential for transmission of COVID-19.
Some people have suggested distances of 32 ft from anyone running in front of you -65 ft for cyclists-, but no scientific evidence so far. The best lockdown running idea is to find a place that allows you to be 6ft away from everybody.
Wear a mask
If you can’t keep the 6 ft separation distance -which is the case if you are running in an urban setting-, our recommendation is to wear a mask.
Any type of cloth mask will work for running during the lockdown. Just make sure it is made from breathable fabric on the outside and has padding on the inside.
Another common solution runners everywhere have been implementing is to wear a neck scarf when the weather is cold, which could also work as a mask when needed.
There is also an accessory known as a Neck Gaiter or -Buff-. This is a tube made of stretchable fabric that is easy to pull up and down as needed.
Yes, we know that wearing a mask might feel uncomfortable and makes it harder to breathe, which also prevents you from running as fast as you are used to.
For compensating for this slowdown, our advice is to relax, just knock the pace down a bit, and focus more on having fun than on crushing any personal records.
And last but not least, make sure to wash your mask after every running session. This is one of the best lockdown running ideas for safety, as it’s something we don’t usually do.
How should I prepare for running during the lockdown?
Having already discussed the security protocols you should follow before, during, and after running during the lockdown, let’s go through how you can not only work out but actually enjoy it.
Choose a time you feel comfortable
This is really important, as the hours you choose to go out running may have a tremendous impact on the way you feel towards training.
If you are a morning person and generally wake up with a lot of energy, feel free to go at it straight out of bed.
Some people prefer training in the afternoon -some even at mid-day-, and feel much less excitement towards morning training.
So, try going for a run at different hours of the day, see at which times you feel more comfortable, and stick with it.
Clothing and Accessories
The last thing you want while running during lockdown is to suffer an injury or catching a cold for going out wearing the wrong gear.
The first thing to check, it’s the running shoes. They are your principal running tool, and as such, should be light and provide you with the right amount of cushion.
Also, look for a pair of shoes that allows your feet to breathe easily, and leave just enough room for your toes to be comfortably tucked inside.
One more thing, try to pick a pair of shoes with an upper made from some waterproof material so that rain doesn’t ruin your running during the lockdown.
For your upper body, go with shirts made from fabric with sweat dissipating properties instead of those old cotton t-shirts from when you were in college.
Also, wearing soft, breathable, and lightweight running shorts -or cold-weather running pants, as the weather demands- are a must.
As a side note, women should also include in their get-up a good quality sports bra. Just make sure it provides the proper coverage, support, and most importantly, feels comfortable.
Look for a sturdy and water-resistant armband to hold your mobile phone in place while running. This way, you can also check your running time and distance.
You can also download one of the many mobile apps that allow you not only to keep track of times and distances but also let you set your personal goals.
Whether you choose a neck gaiter, a cloth mask, or a simple scarf, always remember the main accessory you need for running during lockdown is -after all-, a mask.
What is the best training routine to follow during the lockdown?
Here you are, ready to start your training regime with some crazy lockdown running ideas?. Well, there is one more thing to discuss before you go out as these tips will only help you improve your running.
As with any other sport, the actual running is but one aspect of the total experience, so here we will be giving you some more ideas to make it whole.
The 7-minute HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workout
High-Intensity Interval Training -HIIT- plays a pivotal role in improving your running during the lockdown, as this is a routine that can be totally practiced at home.
HIIT basically consists of a short period of intense training, immediately followed by a short recovery time. In this sense, the training plan would go as follows:
Sprinting in place (20 seconds)
Simulate running as hard as possible, with your knees reaching as high as you can, while also driving your arms.
Squats (20 seconds)
With your feet parallel, start crouching without reaching your heels off the floor, and when your thighs are parallel to the floor, push back up until you achieve the initial position.
Burpees (20 seconds)
Starting in the push-up position, push your knees forward until they reach your chest. Then, assuming the press-up position, leap as high as you can, and return to the initial posture.
Arm circles (20 seconds)
Standing with arms fully extended -horizontally- at shoulder height, begin moving them in small clockwise circles.
Jumping jacks (20 seconds)
Standing with feet together and arms down by each side, jump. Totally raising your arms up, and at the same time, spread your feet until they are shoulder-width apart, then return to the initial position.
Flutter kicks (20 seconds)
Lying on your back with arms fully extended and palms facing down, lift your heels a few inches from the floor, then start making small kicks with each of your legs.
Push-ups (20 seconds)
Face-down with hands firmly placed on the floor and shoulder-width apart, bend your elbows until chest reaches the ground, then push back up.
Lunges (20 seconds)
Standing with feet hip-width apart and hand placed on your hips, move your right leg forward and flex your left knee until it reaches the floor. Assume the initial position and repeat with the other leg.
Sit-ups (20 seconds)
Lying down with knees pointing to the ceiling, put your hands behind your head, then raise your head, shoulders, and torso up towards your knees a few inches. Assume initial position and repeat.
Remember that each 20-seconds exercise series must be immediately followed by a 30-seconds recovery period, and then proceed with the next 20-seconds series.
As you can see, this HIIT routine includes jump training exercises -plyometrics- which train your body for the impacts it will endure while running.
These, coupled with lunges and squats to work your legs and abs exercises to strengthen your core, will surely improve your running, even during the lockdown.
What is the best way to train indoors during the lockdown?
If your local authorities declare a total lockdown, preventing you from going outside for running, you can efficiently exercise indoors.
Apart from the mentioned HIIT workout, some of the most popular ways to train for running during lockdown are Treadmill Workout and Strength Workout.
For this ‘Lockdown Running Ideas’, treadmills are the principal indoor training tool for runners everywhere, a statement that has become true now more than ever.
Alternating the pace
One way you can make treadmill training more exciting might be alternating the settings, from a slow pace to a harder one every 3 to 5 minutes.
Pace does not need to be extremely difficult. The idea here is to break your run into segments, so you can focus on each part at a time.
This type of treadmill training works by mostly focusing on repetitions of high intensity and various lengths, then slowing the speed for a recovery jog.
Doing a slow recovery jog instead of stopping is especially important because this way, your workout does not get interrupted by getting on and off your treadmill.
In this training, you go progressively ramping up the inclination and speed parameters of the treadmill. This helps build up strength in the lower half of the body.
On the warm-up, you should pay special attention to stretching and loosening your Achilles and calves, for these are especially stressed during hill training.
Aside from the fact that it focuses more on helping prevent injuries, strength training for runners differs from standard weight training because it targets specific muscles used for running.
Adding strength training to your running during the lockdown exercise routines also helps improve your running by making you a more powerful, more efficient athlete.
Among the most beneficial strength training exercises runners can add to their regimen, we have to mention:
Lie on a straight line, resting on the tip of your toes and your elbows. This resistance exercise is excellent for working your shoulders, core, and your lower back.
Seated with your knees bent 90 degrees, hands joined in front of you, rotate upper body from side to side, as if you were to touch the floor with your elbows.
Squat to overhead press
Holding dumbbells in both hands do as you would do regular squats, but press them overhead just as you stand back up. This exercise works almost every muscle group.
We mention only a few exercises. But there are many more you can add to your sessions! Some using the stability ball, dumbbells, and even exercise rubber bands.
These are mere lockdown running ideas, as in the end, it all comes down to picking the training routine that works best for you. What really matters is staying active.