When the days get shorter and the weather isn’t great, the danger is always there to leave your running shoes in the corner and just stay on your cosy sofa. This is often the exact time when there aren’t any competitions going on. However, the most important thing is preparation for the new season. It is the time for basic training. The time in which you do basic endurance runs for the first time. Units are done to a high intensity, to a maximum of 75% of your heart rate. You should also regularly do strength and coordination training at the same time. Many runners, myself included, will happily neglect this, but it is an important component for good form. Force while running doesn’t exclusively come from the legs!  

Basic training in the cold parts of the year

Basic training mainly consists of quiet endurance runs. Depending on what your objectives for the new season are your runs should last up to 3 hours for a marathon. But there are also individual options to consider. It is best to run in a group with experienced runners as you will have an incentive to run in bad weather. It is also a bit more entertaining this way. It’s important though to stick to your own capabilities - do not keep on running because of peer pressure. Although the long, quiet units form the basis of basic training, you should also try not to ignore force and pace during this training phase. Although, I wouldn’t install long and hard tempo units into my training plan: I would do some Fartleks or run in the hills to bring variety to training and also build strength and pace. A well measured sprint on a mountain can be included from time to time. You must not over work your body. You should be able to listen to your body, so that you know what you can expect of yourself and your body and what is good for it. Anyone who has prepared for the new season with good training sessions can rely on a stable foundation which not only prevents injury but also improves the regenerative capacity of your body after hard workouts. It is this ability to recover which finally gets you to the front of the pack. Who regenerates faster, can train faster. I personally like to use autumn and winter for long hikes. For me these are, along with mountain biking, an optimal complement to running. Autumn in particular is a great time to wander through the colourful forests and enjoy nature in its full glory. So leave the sofa alone, put on your shoes and the right clothing, and prepare the basis for a successful season next year.