Prepare for your next 5K

Marathons, Triathlons and 5K’s … Oh my! It all seems intimidating. When was the last time you ran three miles? Your answer might be yesterday, or it might be never. Don’t fret! I got everything you need to know about preparing for a 5K. After all, the True Blue 5K is only a few weeks away!

Over the past week, I interviewed two ladies that gave me some insight on the matter, Fitness Director Justine Coleman and Program Assistant Emmy Richards Here is what they had to say about preparing for a 5K.

What are the first steps to preparing for a 5K?
“The first step in preparation is to move. I would recommend first increasing the time that you are physically active, then distance, and then begin doing intervals. However, training for 5K is determined by what your goals are for the race,” said Coleman.

“Start off walking more than you are running and then as the running becomes easier, walk less and run more. Cross training, such as riding a bike, swimming, or working out at our exceptional RAC facility, will help you build stamina and endurance. Increase time and then work on distance,” said Richards. 

Should runners stretch before or after running?
“Runners should do dynamic stretches after a warm up such as walking for 5 to 10 minutes prior to the start of the race. Static stretches, holding your stretch in place, should be done post race.” 

“Both! But make sure to warm up the muscles before you stretch. That would mean doing a walking or slow jog for 5 to10 minutes and then stretching prior to your run. After the run, walk to cool down and do slower stretches by holding the positions longer.” 

How will environmental conditions (humidity, cold, rain) affect your performance?
Sometimes there is no way to prepare for the change of conditions. However, you can make sure that you have clothes that are comfortable to run in. I highly suggest wearing the clothes you want to run the race in prior to the event. You don’t want to be focused on how uncomfortable your clothes are for 3.1 miles.

 Environmental conditions play a key role in racing! If you are not comfortable you won’t perform to your maximal capabilities! With the current South Georgia conditions, make sure you are hydrated before the race and make use of water stations. Wearing breathable clothing will also help your body regulate heat!

Does diet affect your performance?
Personally, I have to eat about 1 to 2 hours before I run. I am also addicted to coffee. A carb packed meal and coffee are on my menu before a run. What and how much people can eat is up to them individually. I suggest practicing a morning run and eating what you will eat the morning of your race. Make sure it sits well, so you only see it once that morning.

Diet definitely makes a huge difference! Personally, I believe you have to put good things into your body if you expect your body to perform at a certain level. I typically eat a couple hours before a race. Food high in carbs and low in fiber and fat will provide quick energy to help you push through those 3.1 miles! 

Are the type of tennis shoes and clothing worn important?
YES! You have to be comfortable. I prefer a dry wicking material, so my clothes don’t “stick” to me. In addition, do not buy new sneakers the night before the race and decide to run in them. Wear shoes that are still in good condition and you have been running in. I suggest wearing what you want to training before the race. Make sure your clothes don’t punish you more than the run. Chaffing is not fun…

Shoes are the most important part of your race day attire! Look for shoes that fit your feet well and are comfortable, yet structured and supportive enough to protect your feet from the impact of running. Socks are also really important, as they will help prevent your feet from getting blisters. I prefer tighter fitting clothing when I run because it cuts down on chaffing when my clothes get sweaty! 

What is your ideal training plan for a 5K?
Once again this depends on your goals. I would suggest running with a friend! You will be more accountable. 

My ideal training plan involves training 4-5 times a week and taking rest days to recover. The best way I train is to run with friends! Plus, before I do a training workout I always tell someone what my goal is for that day. When I want to quit, it holds me accountable!

See it doesn’t sound too hard! Now you can get started preparing for a race. Trust me. You can’t beat the feeling you get after finishing a race that not only challenges you physically but mentally as well. What are you waiting for? Get moving! Here is your chance to complete the True Blue 5K on October 22, 2011!

Click Here To Register Now!


Stepilicious isn’t your mom’s step class!

Stepilicious isn’t your mom’s step class!”


We all get in our routines of taking the same group fitness classes, at the same times every week. Last week, I decided to switch it up a bit and look for something new. While looking at the Group Fitness Schedule, one class caught my eye.. Stepilicious!

I have to admit, I was a little nervous about what I was getting myself into. But after speaking with the instructor, Emmy Richards, I soon realized I was in for an hour of fun and calorie burning too.

“Stepilicious isn’t your mom’s step class! With fun and sassy dance moves like the Britney, Flamingo and Sexy Salsa, you’ll shake your way into shape! Easy to master choreography and dance club music mixes make this class an exciting and challenging cardio workout,” said Emmy.

Don’t be afraid if you don’t have any dance experience. First, Emmy starts the one-hour class by teaching you the basic step moves. Gradually, arm motions are incorporated in, then the amount of dance moves multiplies and before you know it you have an entire step routine going in the blink of an eye.

My favorite move was the Britney.. A little take off of our favorite pop-star Britney Spears. And of course who doesn’t love doing the Cha-Cha? When you’re having fun dancing to your favorite music, you don’t even realize that you’re getting a workout too. But don’t worry you’ll leave the class in a sweat, feeling energized and ready to  take on the rest of the week.

“I hope to see everyone next Wednesday at Stepilicious- just step up, and shake it!” said Emmy.

Stepilicious is held every Wednesday at 5:30pm in the Group Fitness Room.

With that in mind, I would also like to mention a program with an awesome cause. Pilates 4 Pink! Come out on October 11th from 5:30 – 6:45 pm and 7:00 – 8:15 pm in the Multipurpose room of the RAC. If you have questions please visit :

Club Sport of the Month -Cycling

The GSU Cycling Team has been Selected as the September Club Sport of the Month! I had the opportunity to talk to team President Drew Powell about the Club. Check out below for some entertaining and enlightening responses.

GSU Cycling

What is a tradition your team has?

A 100 mile ride on a saturday winter morning, followed by a nap, food, football that afternoon and Moe biscuits please! –title given to the craziest trip of the season. One year we went an hour and a half out of the way because we were all craving biscuits.

What is your favorite thing about playing Club Sports at Georgia Southern?

I dont know where I could find this kind of support from a club sports program. Everyone in it as well as at CRI always asks “How was yall’s weekend” “How’d yall do?” They are excited to here we succeed. That just pushes us to represent GSU more and more. So the support is huge.

How often do you practice? What is your typical practice like?

We try to get on the bike everyday preseason and in season. Depending on the season, we will work on technical work for Mtn bikers and Cyclocross. We will train intervals/power sets/hill repeats/force/endurance any other time. On the weekends we will typically just go out and spin for 3-4 hours putting on deeep legs.

How often do you have meets?

Road season in spring will have an omnium weekend just about every weekend of the spring. Typically two to three weekends off. Mountain season in the fall has normally 5-6 race weekends. Then cyclocross at the end of the fall semester will have 3 or 4 races. It is a new discipline.

What is it like to travel around and play different schools?

It is awesome! We have met some of the coolest people and stayed in some of the nicest towns. Mars Hill and us have become very close as to we will put them up when they are in town, and they will do the same for us.

What is your best memory about Club Sports?

Steve’s “cat” story.

When did you start cycling?

Freshman Year in college

What if someone is interested in playing your sport? How can they find out more information? Are there tryouts?

They can check out our facebook or website Come to a meeting, meet everyone. No tryouts. be a nice person, and be passionate about what you are doing.

When was your club established at Georgia Southern?

Our club was established way back in the early 90’s

Does your team have any achievements the team is especially proud of?

We are particularly proud of becoming division 1 last year and stepping it up to do work on a tougher crowd of individuals.