Looking for tips and advice to take your running to the next level? Check out the tag session “Tips” on This section of the blog is dedicated to sharing practical, actionable tips for runners of all levels, from beginners to experienced athletes. Whether you’re looking for advice on training, nutrition, injury prevention, or gear, you’ll find a wealth of information in this valuable resource. Browse the “Tips” tag session to discover new insights and strategies to help you achieve your running goals.

Summer Training: Stay Hydrated and Improve Your Run

The balmy days of summer are a call for many runners to take to the trails, the beach, or the streets. There’s something undeniably appealing about the long, sunny days that makes us want to get outside and be active. However, running in summer does come with its own set of challenges. The high temperatures and increased humidity can affect your performance and can even be dangerous if not properly managed. In this article, we’re going to talk about how to improve your running during the summer months and the importance of staying hydrated.

Summer Training

Adapting to the Heat

The first step in summer training is allowing your body to adapt to the heat. If you’re used to running in cooler conditions, you’ll likely find that your pace slows down when temperatures rise. This is completely normal. Your body needs time to adjust to the heat, so give yourself a few weeks to acclimatize. Start with shorter runs and gradually increase your distance as your body gets used to the higher temperatures.

Stay Hydrated

Hydration is always important for runners, but it becomes even more crucial during the summer months. When you’re running in the heat, your body sweats more to help cool you down. This means you’re losing water and electrolytes faster than usual, which can lead to dehydration if you’re not careful.

To ensure you’re hydrating properly, consider the following tips:

  • Pre-hydrate: Drink plenty of water throughout the day, not just during and after your run. This will help you start your run well-hydrated.
  • Carry Water: For longer runs, carry water with you. There are plenty of options available, from handheld bottles to hydration vests.
  • Replenish Electrolytes: Along with water, your body also loses electrolytes when you sweat. These are essential for muscle function and hydration, so consider a sports drink or electrolyte tablets to replenish these.
  • Don’t Wait Until You’re Thirsty: Thirst is a sign that your body is already dehydrated. Drink regularly, even if you don’t feel thirsty.

Training in the Early Morning or Late Evening

To avoid the summer heat, consider running early in the morning or late in the evening when temperatures are cooler. Not only will this make your run more comfortable, but it’s also safer than running in the intense midday sun. Plus, there’s something uniquely peaceful about running as the sun rises or sets.

Proper Attire

Choose light-colored, loose-fitting clothing that can help reflect the sun and wick away sweat. Additionally, wearing a hat or visor can protect your face from the sun, and don’t forget to apply a sweat-resistant sunscreen before you head out.

Listen to Your Body

Lastly, and most importantly, listen to your body. If you’re feeling lightheaded, dizzy, or nauseous, stop running, find a shady spot, and drink some water. Pushing yourself too hard in the heat can lead to heat-related illnesses, which can be severe.

In the summer our body sweats a lot more, so it’s interesting to always be alert with chafing especially if you are higher weight, care so that our workouts are always of good quality

Summer running can be challenging, but with the right preparation, it’s an excellent opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and improve your performance. Stay hydrated, listen to your body, and enjoy those sun-drenched runs!

Remember, while running is a fantastic way to stay fit and enjoy the summer, it’s crucial to approach it mindfully and take all the necessary precautions to maintain your health and safety. Hydrate, run smart, and most of all, enjoy the journey! Happy summer running!

Tennis: A Winning Secondary Sport for Runners

We often stress the importance of cross-training for runners here at Running with Joe. It’s a powerful tool for increasing your overall fitness, preventing injury, and keeping your running regimen fresh and enjoyable. But have you ever considered tennis as a part of your cross-training routine? Tennis, a dynamic sport requiring speed, endurance, and agility, could be a perfect complement to your running training.

Runner with tennis racket ready to cross-train on the court

Why Tennis?

As a runner, you might be wondering why you should opt for tennis instead of other popular cross-training activities like cycling or swimming. The answer lies in the multifaceted benefits tennis provides:

  1. Full-body workout: Tennis is an excellent full-body workout, engaging nearly all your muscle groups. Besides running around the court boosting your cardiovascular health, swinging the racket strengthens your upper body, core, and lower body muscles.
  2. Improved Agility: Tennis involves swift lateral movements, sudden starts and stops, and changes in direction. This enhances your agility, balance, and coordination, which can ultimately benefit your running form and efficiency.
  3. Endurance and Speed: Tennis matches can last for a few minutes to several hours, demanding both speed and endurance from players. This combination of high-intensity and endurance training can elevate your running performance.
  4. Mental Fitness: Tennis is as much a mental game as it is a physical one. It requires strategy, concentration, and mental resilience — qualities that can significantly enhance your mental toughness while running.
  5. Reduced Risk of Overuse Injuries: Runners can often suffer from overuse injuries due to repetitive strain on specific muscle groups. Tennis uses different movements and muscles, providing runners a break from their regular routine and thus helping prevent overuse injuries.
  6. Fun and Social: Tennis is a fun way to break the monotony of running alone. It provides a chance to socialize, compete, and learn new skills, keeping your fitness routine engaging and enjoyable.

Incorporating Tennis Into Your Running Routine

Before adding tennis to your training routine, consider these tips to maximize benefits and avoid potential drawbacks:

  1. Start Slow: If you’re new to tennis, start with short, light sessions and gradually increase the intensity and duration. This approach allows your body to adapt to the new demands of the sport and minimizes the risk of injury.
  2. Balanced Schedule: Don’t overdo tennis at the expense of your running training. Find a balance that works for you. You might find that playing tennis once or twice a week provides ample cross-training benefits without overtaxing your body.
  3. Proper Gear: Invest in a good pair of tennis shoes that provide sufficient ankle support, cushioning, and stability. Wear appropriate tennis attire for comfort and flexibility.
  4. Warm-Up and Cool-Down: Never skip your warm-up and cool-down routines before and after tennis matches. This will help prepare your muscles for the game, enhance performance, and speed up recovery.
  5. Proper Technique: Consider taking a few tennis lessons to learn the correct techniques. This can help prevent potential injuries and maximize the benefits of the sport.

In conclusion, if you’re looking for a way to spice up your running regimen, consider picking up a racket and heading to the tennis court. Not only will it help boost your fitness, agility, and endurance, but it also offers a refreshing change of pace from your usual running routes. Remember, the key to cross-training is finding an activity you enjoy, and with the right approach, tennis can be a winning addition to your training routine.

Acai for runners, the Brazilian superfood

Acai for runners, an excellent choice
Acai – the Brazilian superfood

Açai or Acai berries, known as a “superfood”, have become increasingly popular among runners and fitness enthusiasts. These small, dark purple berries native to Brazil are packed with antioxidants, fiber, and healthy fats that can provide a host of benefits for runners, including improved energy levels, enhanced digestion, and reduced inflammation. With its unique combination of nutrients, acai is the perfect food for runners who want to boost their performance and recovery. Whether you add it to your smoothies, yogurt, or oatmeal, acai is a delicious way to get the nutrients your body needs to succeed on the road or trail.

Aids in Weight Loss

Acai is a great option for runners who are looking to lose weight, as it is a superfood that offers a variety of health benefits. Acai berries are high in antioxidants, which can help the body to fight off free radicals and reduce inflammation. Additionally, acai berries contain fiber, which can help to increase feelings of fullness and reduce overall calorie intake. By incorporating acai into a healthy diet and exercise routine, runners can experience improved weight loss results, as well as improved overall health and well-being.

When eating acai, it is important to avoid overloading your bowl with too many toppings. While acai itself is a nutritious food, it can quickly become high in calories when paired with excessive amounts of granola, fruit, and other sweet additions. To ensure that you are getting the most health benefits from your acai bowl, it is best to stick to a modest portion size and limit the number of additional toppings that you add. By doing so, you can avoid consuming excess calories and enjoy the many benefits that acai has to offer, including its high levels of antioxidants, healthy fats, and fiber.

Boosts Immune System

The acai berry has been known to boost the immune system due to its high levels of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Antioxidants help to protect the body from free radical damage, which can lead to diseases and illnesses. Additionally, the acai berry is rich in vitamin C, which is essential for a healthy immune system. This superfood can help to support and strengthen the body’s natural defense mechanisms, making it easier to fight off infections and illnesses. Furthermore, the high levels of fiber and healthy fats found in acai can also contribute to overall health and wellness, including boosting the immune system. So, by incorporating acai into your diet, you can help support and strengthen your body’s natural defense system and maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.

Regenerates Muscles

The high levels of antioxidants present in acai berries are effective in reducing inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. This helps to promote faster muscle recovery after intense physical activity, making it a perfect superfood for runners. Additionally, acai berries are rich in iron, calcium and other essential minerals that are required for the proper functioning of muscles.

Studies have shown that the consumption of acai berries can lead to an increase in the production of insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1) in the body. This hormone plays a key role in muscle growth and regeneration, making acai an ideal superfood for runners looking to improve their performance and prevent injury. Regular consumption of acai can help to reduce muscle damage, improve muscle endurance, and promote the overall health of the muscles, allowing runners to train harder and more efficiently.

How do you make it?

Making acai bowls is a simple and delicious way to enjoy this superfood. To make an acai bowl, you will need frozen acai puree, frozen fruit, and a blender. Start by blending the frozen acai puree and frozen fruit until smooth. You can add some liquid, such as almond milk or coconut water, to help the blender create a smooth consistency. Once the mixture is smooth, pour it into a bowl and add toppings of your choice, such as granola, fresh fruit, nuts, and honey. Serve immediately and enjoy the delicious, nutritious, and refreshing taste of the acai bowl.

Brazilian food

Açai, a Brazilian superfood, has recently gained popularity among runners as a healthy addition to their diet. This purple berry, native to the Amazon rainforest, is packed with nutrients and antioxidants that provide numerous benefits for athletes. Açai is rich in fiber, healthy fats, and protein, making it a great source of sustained energy for runners. Additionally, its high levels of antioxidants help to fight against muscle damage and support muscle regeneration, helping runners to recover more quickly from their workouts. With its unique flavor and versatility, Açai has become a staple in many runners’ diets, making it a perfect way to fuel your next run and support your overall health and fitness goals.

How to Start Running While Overweight

Starting a running routine can be a challenging journey, especially when you’re overweight. However, with the right approach and mindset, anyone can begin to experience the numerous benefits of running, regardless of their current weight. This article will provide tips and guidance on how to start running while overweight, and help you build a healthy and sustainable running habit.

As a seasoned runner who has completed over 50 marathons around the world, I have faced my fair share of challenges and obstacles. However, after the pandemic hit, I found myself struggling with weight gain and now weigh close to 100 kg. Despite this setback, I am determined to get back to my former self and continue my passion for running marathons. Through my journey, I aim to not only motivate myself, but also help those who are in a similar situation. I will be documenting my process and sharing my experiences to provide encouragement and guidance for anyone who wants to start running while overcoming weight challenges.

Running While Overweight

Start with a walking program

It’s important to remember that every journey starts with small steps. If you’re new to exercise or have been inactive for a while, it’s recommended to begin with a walking program. This will allow you to build up your stamina, strength, and confidence gradually, and it’s a low-impact form of exercise that is easy on your joints. You can start by walking for 10-15 minutes a day and gradually increasing the duration and intensity as you feel comfortable. By incorporating a walking program into your routine, you’ll be able to build a strong foundation and lay the groundwork for a successful running program in the future.

Wear the right gear

Wearing the right gear is important for any runner, but especially for those who are starting out while overweight. Proper shoes with good support can help prevent injury and provide comfort during your workout. Additionally, moisture-wicking clothing can help keep you cool and dry during your runs. Investing in quality gear can help make your running experience more enjoyable and less painful.

Gradual increase

Gradually increasing the amount of running in your routine is crucial when starting to run while overweight. This not only helps prevent injury, but also allows your body to properly adapt to the increased physical activity. Start with short running intervals, interspersed with periods of walking, and gradually increase the length of your running segments as your fitness improves. This gradual approach will help you build endurance and strength over time, making it easier to run for longer periods of time and reducing the risk of injury.

Focus on form

When starting to run while overweight, it’s important to focus on proper form. Maintaining good posture and a balanced stride can help reduce the impact on your joints and prevent injury. Pay attention to your posture, keeping your head up and your shoulders back and relaxed. Balance your stride, land softly on the midfoot, and avoid overstriding. Incorporating strength and flexibility exercises, such as yoga or Pilates, can also help improve your form and reduce the risk of injury. With a focus on form, you can enjoy the physical and mental benefits of running while staying healthy and safe.

Warm up and cool down

Warming up and cooling down are important aspects of any workout, and even more so for those who are starting to run while overweight. A proper warm up will help prepare your body for the physical demands of running, reducing the risk of injury. Similarly, cooling down will help bring your heart rate back to normal and allow your body to recover more efficiently. It is recommended to spend 5-10 minutes warming up and cooling down before and after each run, respectively. This can include light stretching, walking, or other low-impact activities.


Hydration is an essential aspect of running, regardless of weight. However, it becomes even more important for overweight individuals who are starting to run. Overweight individuals have a higher body mass, which requires more fluid to maintain the body’s balance and keep the muscles hydrated. Dehydration can lead to cramping, fatigue, and decreased performance, so it’s essential to drink plenty of water before, during, and after running. It’s recommended to drink at least 17 ounces of water two hours before running and another 7 to 10 ounces of water every 10 to 20 minutes during the run. After the run, it’s essential to replenish the fluids lost during exercise to help the body recover and prepare for the next workout.

Fuel your body

It is crucial to provide the body with the necessary nutrients and energy to support the physical demands of running and to promote weight loss and overall health. A balanced diet with adequate protein, healthy fats, and carbohydrates can help support the body during and after a run.

Level Up Your Indoor Cycling Game with Zwift Workouts

In recent years, the world of indoor cycling has seen a dramatic shift thanks to the innovative and immersive platform known as Zwift. For many cycling enthusiasts, the thought of hopping on an indoor trainer meant hours of boredom staring at a blank wall or simply watching TV. However, Zwift has managed to revolutionize the way people think about indoor cycling, by offering a virtual environment where cyclists from all over the world can interact, compete, and train together in a fun and engaging setting. With millions of users now regularly participating in Zwift workouts, it’s clear that the platform is here to stay and continue to redefine the way we approach our indoor cycling routines.

Whether you’re a seasoned outdoor cyclist looking to maintain your fitness during the colder months, or someone who simply enjoys the convenience and comfort of working out at home, Zwift provides a plethora of options for riders of all levels and abilities. By connecting your smart trainer, power meter, or using a speed sensor, you can transform your living room into a veritable cycling mecca with challenging workouts, races, and group events, taking place in beautifully designed virtual worlds. The gamification aspect of Zwift keeps things interesting and motivating, as you will earn experience points that will enable you to unlock new gear and accessories, while the various group rides and races cater to different preferences, whether it’s a casual workout or a high-intensity competition.

One of the most appealing aspects of Zwift as a training tool is its diverse and extensive library of structured workouts, designed by professional coaches and athletes. These workouts offer targeted sessions that cater to various goals, such as improving endurance, power, or overall speed. Furthermore, Zwift also offers adaptive training plans, which will tailor your workout schedule based on your fitness levels, goals, and the available time you have to train. This truly personalized approach to training allows you to make the most of every session, optimizing your overall progress, and helping you reach your goals faster.

Zwift represents a new era in indoor cycling, offering an enticing alternative to traditional home-based workouts. Through a blend of engaging and immersive graphics, community interaction, and personalized training plans, Zwift continues to level up the indoor cycling game and attract a growing number of enthusiasts seeking a more enjoyable and meaningful way to train. With constant updates and improvements to the platform, Zwift is poised to remain at the forefront of an evolving fitness landscape, providing a unique and effective way for cyclists of all levels to achieve their goals and connect with others who share their passion.

Zwift: Transforming Indoor Cycling Training

When it comes to indoor cycling, one of the main challenges a rider faces is staying engaged and motivated in a static environment. This is where Zwift, a groundbreaking immersive digital platform, steps in to transform the indoor cycling experience. Zwift uses gamification elements to craft an interactive world where cyclists connect with others and undertake tailored workouts designed to meet specific fitness goals. According to a study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, gamification has proven effective in increasing intrinsic motivation and promoting behavior change in exercise routines. Zwift enables users to elevate their indoor cycling sessions to another level, with customizable avatars, various virtual courses, and structured workouts to enhance performance and maintain motivation.

A standout feature of Zwift is its social aspect, allowing riders to join an ever-expanding global community of like-minded cyclists. By engaging with other users across the world, cyclists can now participate in group workouts, races, and events within a virtual environment. This sense of camaraderie not only fosters healthy competition, but also enhances users’ accountability to push past boundaries and stay committed to consistent training. In fact, according to a study in Computers in Human Behavior, social interaction and a sense of belonging contribute significantly to a participant’s motivation and satisfaction in an online fitness setting. With Zwift’s in-game messaging feature, cyclists are never alone in their journey to optimize their indoor training experience.

One critical component in achieving tangible progress through indoor cycling is following a structured training plan. Zwift offers a plethora of workout options, ranging from beginner-friendly sessions to more advanced workouts that cater to various cycling disciplines. The platform employs a similar training model to traditional cycling training methods, emphasizing power output, heart rate, and cadence. With detailed analytics and performance tracking, Zwift enables users to monitor their progress and adjust their workouts according to individual needs and goals. Additionally, Zwift is compatible with a wide range of smart trainers and power meters, allowing cyclists to tailor their riding experience based on personal preferences and equipment.

Zwift is not only revolutionizing the indoor cycling landscape by creating an engaging and immersive virtual environment; it is also contributing to the sport’s inclusivity and accessibility. Cyclists of all skill levels and backgrounds can easily immerse themselves in the world of Zwift, finding common ground with others who share their passion for cycling. Moreover, Zwift is an invaluable tool for those living in regions plagued by inclement weather or lacking safe outdoor cycling infrastructure. By delivering a dynamic and comprehensive training platform, Zwift has disrupted the status quo of indoor cycling and motivated countless riders to embrace innovative technology, create lasting connections, and strive for new personal records.

Choosing the Right Setup for Zwift Success

my zwift gear

As you begin to incorporate Zwift into your indoor cycling routine, choosing the right setup is essential for maximizing your training success. Investing in a quality training roller is just the first step; ensuring you have the proper equipment to fully engage with the platform is key. There are different types of trainers to consider, from basic trainers with no connectivity to smart trainers that offer a more immersive and interactive experience. Evaluating your goals, budget, and available space will help guide your trainer purchasing decision-making process.

It’s important to prioritize comfort and functionality when setting up your indoor cycling space. The bike should be adjusted properly to fit your body and ensure the right amount of exertion per training session. A fan might be beneficial in keeping you cool during intense workouts, while a comfortable mat will provide additional stability for your training roller. Furthermore, investing in a heart rate monitor for accurate tracking of your body’s response to workouts is useful. High-quality water bottles and towels at arm’s reach will help maintain a comfortable cycling environment.

The next aspect to consider when aiming for Zwift success is the digital setup itself. As the Zwift platform relies on a strong internet connection, having reliable Wi-Fi will make your workouts and races more enjoyable. To experience Zwift to its full potential, investing in a suitable device that is compatible with the platform, such as a laptop or an Apple TV, will guarantee seamless integration. Additionally, having a sufficiently large screen on which to view your workouts will contribute to the immersive experience Zwift is designed to provide.

using my gravel bike on zwift

One of the more unique aspects of Zwift is the social component, which can make indoor cycling more engaging and motivating. However, you may need some additional accessories to foster a pleasant social interaction within the platform. A quality pair of headphones with a built-in microphone enables you to communicate with your fellow cyclists for the in-game group chats or voice channel discussions. Moreover, employing a phone mount that attaches to your bike’s handlebars allows you to access Zwift’s companion app more easily during workouts or races. This app allows you to track data, check course maps, and issue “Ride On!” encouragements to fellow cyclists with just a swipe of your finger.

By carefully choosing the right setup for Zwift, you’ll be well equipped to tackle any virtual ride or race. Not only will this enhance your indoor cycling experience, but it can also translate into better performance and mental stamina when cycling outside, making you a fitter, stronger, and more capable rider overall.

Navigating Zwift’s Interactive Virtual World

Zwift app and indoor cycling trainer enhancing at-home workout experience

Zwift has revolutionized the world of indoor cycling by creating a virtual environment that connects users globally and offers an interactive and engaging workout experience. It’s a whole new way of training indoors, making it not only more efficient but also more enjoyable. With its 3D graphics, real-world routes, and a multitude of workouts, Zwift provides a user-friendly platform where riders can participate in structured workouts, races, and group rides. The virtual world of Zwift consists of several dynamic and interconnected maps, featuring a wide range of terrain. From the flat, fast roads of Watopia to the steep, mountainous climbs of the Alpe du Zwift, there’s something for cyclists of all abilities.

One of the most appealing aspects of Zwift is the gamification of indoor cycling, which not only motivates users to push harder, but also to keep coming back for more. The platform incorporates a distinct leveling system, allowing riders to earn experience points (XP) for every mile they cover and eventually unlock new in-game items and features. Moreover, cycling aficionados can join various clubs and teams or participate in challenges, earning virtual badges and rewards to showcase their achievements. According to recent statistics, over 3.5 million subscribers have joined Zwift, showcasing how captivating and popular this virtual cycling platform has become.

The immersive experience offered by Zwift doesn’t end with its virtual world and gamification. Utilizing advanced technology and data analysis, the platform provides a highly personalized training experience. By inputting personal metrics such as height, weight, and age, along with equipment details, Zwift can accurately estimate a rider’s power output and translate it into on-screen speed and performance. The integration of smart trainers and power meters further enhances the realism, adjusting resistance based on inclines, declines, and drafting behind other virtual riders. With these technological advancements, indoor cycling transforms into a highly engaging and tailored workout session.

The vast array of workouts and training plans featured in Zwift cater to a broad range of cyclists, from beginners to elite riders. Zwift’s library contains over 1,000 individual workouts and numerous training plans, designed to target specific fitness goals such as improving endurance, speed, or climbing abilities. Furthermore, the platform offers flexible scheduling, enabling users to fit their workouts around busy lives. A recent study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found that structured Zwift workouts effectively improved participants’ performance and fitness levels in just six weeks.

Zwifting is a social experience and a prime example of the power of online communities. Cyclists can ride alongside friends and strangers, participating in virtual races, group rides, and even charity events. Leaderboards, chat functions, and the ability to “give kudos” (similar to a ‘like’ on social media) foster connection and encouragement within the Zwift community. A 2022 quote from Zwift’s CEO, Eric Min, highlights how the platform is “bringing people together from all over the world, breaking down barriers, and creating a global fitness community.”

While Zwift has already proven to be a game-changer in the world of indoor cycling, the company continues to grow and innovate. The virtual platform has expanded by adding a running option and has also hosted professional events such as the Virtual Tour de France and the 2020 UCI Cycling Esports World Championships. These developments testify to the limitless potential of Zwift as a transformative force within the realms of fitness and technology. By joining Zwift, indoor cyclists can not only improve their physical capabilities but also experience a vibrant and diverse virtual world that has forever changed the way we train indoors.

Tailor-made Workouts for Your Fitness Goals

Indoor cycling has come a long way with advancements in technology and the creation of immersive virtual platforms like Zwift. One significant benefit of using Zwift is its ability to create customized workouts based on your personal fitness goals. Whether you’re aiming to improve your endurance, increase your power output, or simply maintain your fitness level, Zwift workouts can be tailor-made to suit your needs perfectly.

Zwift’s personalized workouts are designed to cater to cyclists of varying skill levels and fitness backgrounds. The platform offers a range of workouts submitted by other members, professional coaches, and even Olympic athletes for inspiration. You can also create your own workout using the program’s user-friendly interface. By opting for tailored workouts, you enjoy more variety in your indoor training sessions, ensuring that you remain motivated and engaged throughout the process.

One of the crucial aspects of seeing progress in your fitness journey is structured training. Zwift’s workout structure allows you to systematically increase your workload based on your objectives and your perceived abilities. For example, if you’re focusing on building endurance, the program will guide you through steadily increasing time and distance intervals to achieve this specific goal.

Another benefit of using tailor-made Zwift workouts is that it helps you track and analyze your performance data. As you complete your assigned workouts, the information is stored and presented in a visually comprehensible manner. By reviewing this data, you’ll gain valuable insights into your progress and determine the effectiveness of your chosen workouts. These insights can then be used to make informed decisions on tweaking your training regimen for maximum results.

A significant appeal of indoor cycling is the convenience it offers. When building custom Zwift workouts, you can factor in the available time you have for each session, making it even more accessible to fit training into your daily routine. Additionally, you’ll be able to adjust your workout intensity levels according to your energy levels on any given day. This flexibility helps eliminate the mental and physical barriers that may prevent you from working out, ensuring consistency in your training.

Though indoor cycling can sometimes be isolating, Zwift’s workout builder comes with a social aspect that makes it a lot more enjoyable. You have the option of joining various events and group training sessions within the platform, where you can interact with like-minded cyclists and even compete in friendly races. These group activities are known to improve motivation, help keep you accountable, and make your workouts feel less daunting.

Zwift’s tailor-made workouts provide a comprehensive, personalized indoor cycling experience that caters to your unique fitness goals. By embracing this platform for your training, you’re setting yourself up for success and significantly enhancing the enjoyment factor in your indoor cycling sessions. With its focus on customization, data analysis, flexibility, and social interaction, Zwift has revolutionized the indoor training experience, upping the game for cyclists worldwide.

Tracking Progress: Earn Achievements on Zwift

Among the numerous benefits of using Zwift for indoor cycling, one of the most motivating factors is the ability to track your progress and unlock achievements. With each ride, Zwift keeps track of your fitness levels, accumulating experience points (XP) and virtual currency called “drops” that you can use to personalize and improve your in-game avatar, bike, and kit. Additionally, the platform offers an assortment of achievements, ranging from covering specific distances to completing challenging workouts, providing cyclists with a sense of accomplishment and a reason to push themselves harder.

As you accumulate experience points on your Zwift journey, your in-game avatar levels up, unlocking new equipment and customization options. XP is awarded based on mileage or kilometers cycled, and additional points can be earned by completing specific challenges or participating in events. For those who crave some friendly competition, Zwift also features a leaderboards section, displaying various statistics such as total distance, elevation climbed, and calories burned. Moreover, riders can connect with friends, join group rides, participate in races, or even chase after coveted virtual jerseys awarded to riders who achieve specific high scores or reach prominent milestones on the platform.

In addition to in-game achievements, Zwift users can connect their accounts to apps such as Strava and TrainingPeaks, further enhancing the tracking of their riding progress. By connecting to these platforms, cyclists can compare their rides with others, set personal goals, and analyze their performance data to ensure they are on track for success. With regular use of Zwift workouts and the platform’s various challenges and competitions, riders can witness tangible improvements to their fitness, endurance, and speed – whether they are seasoned professionals or beginners seeking an exciting and effective way to level up their indoor cycling game.

Zwift is undoubtedly a game changer for indoor cycling enthusiasts who wish to transform their at-home training into an engaging and fun experience. By offering achievements, points, levels, and a sense of community, Zwift keeps cyclists motivated to put in the effort and persevere through challenging workouts, ultimately resulting in improved performance and greater satisfaction throughout the course of their fitness journey. So why not give Zwift a try and see how this immersive platform can help you level up your indoor cycling game?

Preventing Chafing on Long Distance Runs

Long distance running can be an incredibly rewarding and exhilarating experience, but it also comes with its fair share of challenges. One common issue many runners face is chafing, a painful skin irritation caused by friction during extended periods of exercise. In this post, we will explore some effective tips and strategies to help you avoid chafing and enjoy a more comfortable running experience.

During my two last half marathons in Barcelona and Cyprus, I experienced firsthand the painful effects of chafing. Despite my preparation, I found myself struggling with discomfort and irritation during these races, which hampered my overall performance. Learning from these experiences, I’ve since incorporated the above tips into my training routine, resulting in significant improvements in my comfort and enjoyment during long distance runs. Sharing these strategies with fellow runners can help you avoid similar setbacks and enhance your running experience.

Choose the right clothing

Selecting moisture-wicking, seamless, and snug-fitting clothes is crucial for reducing friction and preventing chafing. Synthetic materials like polyester and nylon can help keep your skin dry, while flat or minimal seams reduce the risk of irritation. Ensure your running attire fits well, as loose clothing can bunch up and cause friction, while overly tight garments may dig into your skin.

Apply lubricants

Applying a lubricant, such as petroleum jelly or specialized anti-chafing products, can significantly decrease friction between your skin and clothing. Apply the lubricant to common chafing areas, including inner thighs, underarms, and nipples. Reapply as needed during your run, especially if you’re sweating heavily or running in wet conditions.

Stay dry

Excess moisture from sweat or rain can exacerbate chafing. Use moisture-wicking clothing, as mentioned earlier, and consider applying talcum or anti-chafing powders to help keep your skin dry. Additionally, if you’re running in wet weather, wear a light, water-resistant jacket to protect yourself from the elements.

Use proper running form

Maintaining proper running form can help reduce friction between your thighs and other body parts. Focus on keeping your upper body relaxed and your stride smooth, with your feet landing directly beneath your hips. Avoid overstriding, as this can cause your thighs to rub together more frequently

Tips for preventing chafing

Build up your mileage gradually

Rapidly increasing your running distance can increase the likelihood of chafing, as your skin may not have time to adapt to the increased friction. Gradually build up your mileage to give your body time to adjust and minimize the risk of chafing.

Take care of your skin

Keeping your skin healthy and hydrated can help reduce the risk of chafing. After each run, clean and moisturize your skin to promote healing and maintain its natural protective barrier. If you do experience chafing, treat the affected area with an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream and avoid running until the skin has healed.

Chafing doesn’t have to be an inevitable part of long distance running. By taking a few proactive measures, such as wearing appropriate clothing, applying lubricants, and maintaining proper running form, you can significantly reduce the risk of chafing and enjoy a more comfortable and enjoyable running experience. Happy running!

Ciutadella Park: Running in Barcelona

If you’re a runner looking for a place to exercise in Barcelona, Ciutadella Park should be at the top of your list. This beautiful green space is located in the heart of the city and offers runners a peaceful, picturesque environment for their workout. The park is filled with lush greenery, tranquil ponds, and scenic paths that make it an ideal place for runners of all skill levels.

One of the standout features of Ciutadella Park is its size. With over 70 hectares of land, there’s plenty of space for runners to explore and find their perfect route. You can take a leisurely jog along the shaded paths, or challenge yourself with a more intense workout on the hilly terrain. Whatever your running style, you’re sure to find a path that fits your needs.

If you’re looking for a place to run during the winter months and stop to run on a treadmill, Ciutadella Park offers a great alternative to running outdoors in the colder weather. With its sheltered paths, scenic views, and abundance of natural beauty, the park provides an ideal escape from the harsh elements of winter. So, whether you’re a seasoned runner or just starting out, Ciutadella Park is the perfect place to get your run in, even during the winter months.

The park is also well-maintained, making it a safe and enjoyable place to run. You’ll find plenty of benches and water fountains along the way, so you can take a break or hydrate as needed. And if you’re looking for a more structured workout, there are several fitness stations located throughout the park where you can do bodyweight exercises and other strength-training moves.

The lap inside the Ciutadella Park measures 1.31km, making it an ideal destination for runners looking to get in a solid workout. While the park can be busy on weekends, the well-maintained paths and lush greenery provide a breathtaking and serene setting for runners of all levels, from seasoned veterans to those just starting out. Whether you’re looking to push your limits or simply enjoy a leisurely run, Ciutadella Park has everything you need for a successful workout.

Arc de Triomf

Picture of the iconic red brick Arc de Triomf monument in Barcelona, Spain, with its grand arches and intricate carvings on display
Arc de Triomf

Ciutadella Park is also conveniently located near one of Barcelona’s most iconic landmarks, the Arc de Triomf. This makes it a great option for runners who want to take a break from their workout and explore the city. Whether you want to stop and admire the stunning architecture of the Arc de Triomf, or you want to continue exploring other parts of the city, the park’s central location makes it an ideal starting point for your adventures in Barcelona.

Cascada del Parque de la Ciudadela

The Cascada del Parque de la Ciudadela, also known as the Park’s waterfall, is a popular attraction within Ciutadella Park. This stunning waterfall is surrounded by lush greenery and provides a peaceful escape from the bustling city. Visitors can relax and enjoy the tranquil sound of the waterfall as they take in the natural beauty of the park. The cascading water adds an extra element of serenity to the already peaceful environment, making it a must-visit spot for anyone visiting the park.

Picture of the cascading waterfalls in Ciutadella Park, surrounded by lush greenery and flowers

The Barcelona Zoo

Located within Ciutadella Park, is a popular destination for families and animal lovers. Visitors can see a wide range of species from all over the world, including elephants, lions, monkeys, and penguins. The Zoo, with its stunning environment, diverse animal collection, and focus on conservation, is a must-visit for nature and wildlife enthusiasts. It also works to protect endangered species and educate visitors about the importance of preserving wildlife. Additionally, the Zoo offers interactive exhibits, animal shows, and educational programs, making it a fun and educational experience for all ages. Whether you’re a local resident or just visiting the city, the Barcelona Zoo is a great way to spend a day exploring the beauty of nature and learning about the world’s amazing wildlife.

Entrance to the Barcelona Zoo at Ciutadella Park, with a sign displaying the zoo's name and logo, surrounded by lush green trees and bushes.
The Zoo of Barcelona

Attractions and Amenities in Ciutadella Park

The statue dedicated to Jaume Garriga I Miquel. This statue is a beautiful piece of art that adds to the ciutadella park already stunning scenery
Statue dedicated to Jaume Garriga I Miquel on Ciutadela Park

Ciutadella Park is a historic public park located in the heart of Barcelona, Spain. The park boasts a variety of attractions and activities for visitors to enjoy, including a large lake, several fountains, and a boating area where visitors can rent small boats. There is also a large grassy area perfect for picnics, sunbathing, and other outdoor activities.

The park also features several museums and galleries, including the Catalan Parliament, the Zoological Museum, and the Museum of Natural Sciences. There is also a bandstand that hosts concerts and performances throughout the year, as well as a playground for children. The park also has several restaurants and cafes, making it an ideal place to relax and have a bite to eat after a run. Additionally, a large fountain surrounded by lush greenery and beautiful flower gardens stands at the center of the park. Overall, Ciutadella Park offers runners and visitors a peaceful escape from the bustling city, and a chance to enjoy the beauty and history of Barcelona.

Picture of lush green trees in Ciutadella Park, Barcelona, providing shade and a peaceful environment for visitors

Another advantage of running in Ciutadella Park is its location. It’s situated in the heart of the city, making it easy to get to from most parts of Barcelona. Whether you’re a local resident or just visiting, you can easily make your way to the park for a morning or evening run.

Cool Down for Runners

Cooling down after a run is just as important as warming up before. This routine helps to gradually bring your heart rate back to normal, prevent blood from pooling in your legs, and reduce muscle soreness and stiffness. In this article, we’ll explore the importance of a proper cool down for runners and provide tips on how to incorporate it into your post-run routine.

Injury Prevention

Cooling down after a run is an important step in injury prevention. By gradually slowing down the body and allowing it to return to its resting state, runners can reduce the risk of muscle soreness, stiffness, and other common injuries. This short period of time can also help the body to recover faster and be better prepared for the next workout. Understanding the benefits of cool down and incorporating it into your routine can help you run smarter, stronger, and injury-free.

Improved circulation

During a run, the heart rate increases and the blood flow is directed towards the working muscles. By gradually slowing down the pace and transitioning to a cool-down walk or stretch, the blood circulation returns to normal. This helps in reducing the risk of muscle soreness, stiffness, and also prevents blood from pooling in the legs. Improved circulation also helps in transporting oxygen and nutrients to the muscles, which aids in the recovery process. Incorporating a cool-down routine after every run can lead to better health and performance in the long run.

Better recovery

Cooling down after a run is an important part of the recovery process for runners. By gradually reducing the intensity of your workout, you allow your heart rate and breathing to return to normal, reducing the risk of blood pooling in your legs and minimizing muscle stiffness. In addition, stretching during the cool down period can help to increase flexibility and range of motion, which is essential for preventing injury and reducing the risk of muscle soreness. Taking proper time for a cool down helps runners prepare their bodies for the next workout and perform better.

Increased flexibility

One of the benefits of a proper cool down after a run is increased flexibility. By taking the time to stretch and move through a full range of motion, runners can help to reduce muscle stiffness and soreness, which can lead to improved flexibility over time. This increased flexibility not only helps with injury prevention, but it can also improve overall performance by allowing runners to move more freely and efficiently during their runs. Incorporating a cool down routine that includes stretching and light movement can help to keep muscles limber and reduce the risk of injury, making it an important part of any runner’s training regimen.

Reduced stress

It can also help reduce stress and tension in the muscles. By slowing down and gradually bringing the heart rate back to its resting state, the body has a chance to release any built-up stress and tension. This can help prevent muscle soreness and stiffness, as well as improve overall recovery and reduce the risk of injury. Additionally, taking a few minutes to stretch and relax after a run can help calm the mind and reduce stress levels, leading to improved overall health and well-being.

A female runner hydrating and replenishing after a cool down workout, taking a moment to recover and refresh.
Cooling down after run is important

Cooling down after a run is an important aspect of recovery and injury prevention. It helps the body return to its pre-exercise state and provides a number of benefits, including improved circulation, increased flexibility, reduced stress, and faster recovery. To get the most out of your cool down, it’s important to follow a few simple tips. Start by walking or jogging at a slow pace to help bring your heart rate back down. Then, perform gentle stretching exercises to help release any tension in your muscles. Incorporating foam rolling or massage can also be effective in promoting recovery. Finally, be sure to hydrate and refuel with nutrient-rich food and drinks to support your body’s recovery process.

Warming Up for Running

Starting your run without a proper warm-up can lead to injury and decreased performance. That’s why it’s crucial to take a few minutes before every run to warm up your muscles and prepare your body for the workout ahead. In this blog post, we’ll be discussing the importance of warming up before running and sharing some effective warm-up exercises to help you get the most out of your runs. Whether you’re a seasoned runner or just starting out, these tips will help you stay injury-free and perform at your best.

Why warming up for running?

Warming up before running is important because it prepares your body for physical activity. By increasing blood flow and flexibility, you can reduce the risk of injury, improve performance, and enhance overall enjoyment during your run. A proper warm-up can also help you mentally prepare for your workout, allowing you to focus on your goals and enjoy the experience. Whether you’re a seasoned runner or just starting out, taking the time to warm up before each run is a crucial step in achieving your best performance.

Benefits of warm up for running
Benefits of warm up for running

Benefits of warm up for running

Warming up before a run is crucial for preventing injury and improving performance. By increasing heart rate, blood flow and flexibility, warming up prepares the body for physical activity and helps reduce the risk of muscle strains, pulls and tears. Start your run strong by taking the time to warm up properly.

How to Warm Up before running

A proper warm-up routine before running can help you improve your performance, reduce your risk of injury, and make your runs feel more enjoyable. Here’s an example of a warm-up routine that you can follow:

  1. Dynamic Stretches: Start by doing a few dynamic stretches to loosen up your muscles. Examples include high knees, butt kicks, and leg swings.
  2. Brisk Walking or Jogging: Start with a slow jog or brisk walk for 5-10 minutes to increase your heart rate and get your blood flowing.
  3. Dynamic Stretches: Do another set of dynamic stretches, this time focusing on the specific muscles you’ll be using while running. Examples include walking lunges, hip circles, and leg swings.
  4. Strides: Run a few short, fast intervals at around 80-90% of your maximum effort to get your legs moving and your heart rate up. These intervals should last around 20-30 seconds each.
  5. Stretches: Finish your warm-up with a few static stretches, holding each stretch for around 30 seconds. Focus on stretching your hamstrings, quads, and calves.

Remember, a proper warm-up routine is essential for any type of running, whether it’s a casual jog or a more intense workout. Take the time to warm up properly, and you’ll be well on your way to having a great run.

Adding warming up to my weekly running training routine

If you’re training for a marathon, it’s important to have a structured plan in place. This will help you stay on track and reach your goals. To get a better understanding of what a marathon training plan looks like, check out my post on “Training for the Barcelona Marathon: My Weekly Training Plan.” This post provides a detailed look at the exercises, workouts, and running distances I’m focusing on each week as I prepare for the big race. By incorporating a mix of running, strength training, and stretching into your routine, you’ll be well on your way to a successful marathon finish.

Maximizing Your Indoor Workouts with Zwift: How I’m Using it with Garmin Fenix 6 and Stryd for Accurate Treadmill Training

Winter has arrived in Barcelona and for many runners, this means that outdoor training can become a challenge. But, with the help of technology, you can still continue to train and stay motivated. I’ve recently started using Zwift on my indoor treadmill workouts and it’s been a game changer.

Training for the Barcelona Marathon on March 19th can be a challenge, especially during the winter months when running outside is not as appealing. That’s why I’ve been relying on the virtual training platform, Zwift, to help me stay on track with my training goals. By using Zwift three times a week on the gym’s treadmill, I can keep my body in peak condition and properly prepare for the marathon. With this training plan, I’m confident that I’ll be ready to tackle the Barcelona Marathon come race day.

Zwift is an online platform that allows you to run and ride in a virtual world alongside other athletes from all over the world. It’s perfect for those days when you can’t or don’t want to brave the elements for a run. The virtual environment provides a fun and interactive experience that helps to keep you engaged and motivated during your indoor training.

I’ve been using Zwift in combination with my Garmin Fenix 6 and Stryd to track my indoor runs. The Fenix 6 provides me with all the data I need, including my heart rate, pace, and distance. And, the Stryd gives me power and running efficiency data, which is especially useful when training on a treadmill. By using all three devices together, I’m able to get a complete and detailed picture of my indoor training sessions.

One thing to note about Zwift is that while it does require a subscription for cycling, you can use it for running for free. This is great for those who are looking to train on a treadmill and want a more interactive and engaging experience, without having to pay for a monthly fee. By using a compatible device such as a Garmin Fenix 6 and a power meter like the Stryd, you can track your progress and see real-time data on your performance. This allows you to accurately measure your progress and make adjustments to your training plan accordingly.

Overall, I’m extremely happy with my decision to start using Zwift for my indoor training. It’s a great way to stay motivated and continue to make progress, even when the weather outside isn’t ideal for running. Whether you’re a seasoned runner or just starting out, I highly recommend giving Zwift a try for your indoor training.

Step by step guide on how to use Zwift:

  1. Create an account: First, go to and sign up for an account. You will need to provide your basic personal information, such as your name, email address, and password.
  2. Download the software: Once you have created an account, you can download the Zwift software to your computer, tablet, or smartphone. The software is available for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android.
  3. Connect your device: In order to use Zwift, you will need to connect a compatible device to your computer. I’m using the Garmin Fenix6 and a Stryd, but you can find a list of compatible devices on the Zwift website.
  4. Set up your profile: Once you have connected your device, you will need to set up your profile. This includes adding your weight, height, and other personal information. You can also customize your avatar, which will be your on-screen representation while you are using Zwift.
  5. Choose your workout: Zwift offers a variety of workouts, from short and sweet to long and intense. You can select a workout based on your goals, experience level, and the amount of time you have available.
  6. Start your ride: Once you have selected a workout, you are ready to start riding. You will be transported to a virtual world, where you can ride with other Zwift users from around the world.
  7. Monitor your progress: As you ride, Zwift will track your performance and give you feedback in real-time. You can see your speed, distance, and other metrics on your screen.
  8. Complete your workout: With Zwift, you’ll receive a comprehensive summary of your workout performance when you’re done. Use this data to monitor your progress and make any necessary adjustments to your training plan. Plus, Zwift seamlessly uploads your activity data to Strava or Garmin Connect.

With these steps, you should be able to start using Zwift and get the most out of your indoor training sessions. Whether you are a seasoned runner or just starting out, Zwift is a great tool for improving your performance and keeping your training on track.

Scroll to Top