Health and Wellness Advisor, Will Wilson, shares his top tips for setting training goals for the 2019 BHGE 10K Running Festival.

Running has many benefits to your health. It reduces the risk of heart disease, raises your energy levels, helps you to loose or maintain weight and strengthens your bones and joints.

The BHGE 10K Running Festival is a celebration of running, hosting runners of all ages and abilities. Whether you are looking to smash your personal best time or just finish the race it is important to remember everyone has different goals. 

The BHGE 10K on Sunday 5 May will be here before we know it so get on top of your 2018 resolutions now by setting some simple goals.

Set your goal

Whatever it is you want to achieve, whether it be to lose a bit of weight, or hit a certain time within the 10K, set your goal and make sure it’s a SMART goal! Following the SMART goal setting guidelines will allow you to have purpose when you train and allow you to track where you are in your preparation for the run.

S: Specific
The goal must be a clear target. An example could be to complete the 10K in under an hour and a half.

M: Measurable
You must be able to measure it. An example could be keep a speed of 1k every 8 minutes.

A: Achievable
You must be able to achieve your goal. You cannot set a goal to run five marathons in a month if you haven’t completed one.

R: Realistic
The goal must be realistic for you. If you are a beginner, you cannot be expected to run at a high pace and sustain it. Pick a pace that is manageable.

T: Timely
Your goal must have a deadline. There is no point setting a goal and saying I’ll complete it when I complete it, set a deadline to keep you on track.

Don’t over complicate

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is over complicating. Setting short term goals are much more achievable and more likely to keep your motivation high. Use a realistic time constraint to work towards and continue to revisit your goals each month to ensure you are on target to succeed, make little adjustments where needed. Breaking it down will make it much easier to stay on track rather than aiming for one goal six months down the line with no structure.

Take action

Pull those running trainers out from the back of the wardrobe and get yourself outside or to the gym. You’ll feel so much better for it, especially when you succeed at the end of the day. The first step is always the hardest!

Buddy up

Get your friend or partner involved. Buddying up and running and training with a partner can really help increase your motivation levels and gives you someone to be accountable to. When you maybe can’t be bothered one evening after a long day at work, all you need is a little push from a friend to get you out and about and one step closer to the finish line. Make sure you are both focused on achieving your goals and you’ll find a little help from each other will go a long way in helping you to cross the finish line on race day.

Focus on distance

For beginners, an easy way to keep motivated is to focus on distance covered rather than the overall duration of your run. Aim for 3K runs to start with and when you feel comfortable running 3K you can gradually increase the distance 1K at a time. Once you are comfortable with the 10K distance, you can then begin to focus on speed and timings.

If you need a help or advice to get your training plan together, email [email protected] or ask a member of staff at one of our Sport Aberdeen gyms to write up a gym or running  programme for you to follow.

Happy training!