Track can be an exciting sport. Whether you are a high school runner, college runner or just interested in taking up track running for fitness, understanding the proper way to train is very important. Training properly will prevent soreness and injuries. A combination of interval training mixed with strength training will get any runner well on his way to the finish line.
Warm up before running track. Before a workout or a race, run around the track a few times at a slow pace. Also make sure to stretch your quads, hamstrings, soleus, piriformis and gastroc muscles. According to Jeff Galloway, author of "Galloway's Book on Running," stretching gently will help prevent injuries.
Try interval training. This is a great discipline for track runners in all events. During interval training, you will run at a variety of speeds. You may start out slow, then run quickly, then take it down to a slower pace again. Reducing speed at the end of an interval will allow for maximum recovery of your muscles. According to Brian Clarke, author of "5K and 10K Training," interval training conserves energy, which will help you maintain your pace and get you to the finish line.
Train in the off-season. Try progressive interval training, which is done at a variety of speeds and with different repetitions and weights when used for strength training. Interval training during the off-season is an excellent way to maintain your running speed and strength.
Incorporate strength training into your routine. Your weight training should focus on explosiveness and building your lower body strength.
Time yourself -- invest in a stopwatch. This is a great way to track your progress. Timing yourself will also allow you to see the effectiveness of your routine and allow you to make changes as needed.
Cool down. After your workout, run a couple of laps at a slow pace. Afterward, stretch your muscles again.
Invest in a good pair of running shoes. As a track runner, it is really the only investment you'll need to make. Invest in shoes that are appropriate for your foot type. If you aren't sure what you need, try a running or sporting goods store. The associates should be able to help you.
Avoid aches, pains and injuries by stretching before you workout or run. Warming up prepares your body for high-intensity training. Don't forget to cool down as well. Jogging after your workout will help eliminate lactic-acid buildup in your muscles that can cause a burning sensation and muscle soreness.