Running Terms For Beginners

If running is new to you, it is very likely that you could soon be lost in translation when you are with more seasoned runners who are mentioning running terms that sound extremely alien to you. However, don’t despair, we have compiled a list of important running terms for beginners and their meanings so that you can now empower yourself and you don’t have to worry about some runners sounding like they are talking in Swahili…

Running Terms For Beginners

Running Terms and Their Meanings

Aerobic Exercise
During low to moderate intensity exercises, like running, your body utilises oxygen for your energy demands.

Aerobic Capacity
This is the maximum amount of physical work that you can do as measured by oxygen consumption.

Anaerobic Exercise
During higher intensity exercises, like high-intensity interval training,  your body generates energy while not using oxygen.

Bandit
A runner who participates in a race without registering.

Bear
This is the point during a race or training when the lactic acid intensifies to a point where your stride becomes significantly altered.

Blood Doping
Illegal method of enhancing the blood’s ability to supply oxygen to the muscles in order to gain a competitive edge.

Bonk
Condition where a runner‘s energy levels deplete due to a decline in glycogen levels  in the liver and muscles. To avoid this, you should be eating energy boosting foods.

Cool-down
Jogging and stretching after a workout or a competition so that you loosen your muscles to try and minimise lactic acid in the body.

Cross Training
Training in another sport or discipline that will help with running. Including strength and conditioning programs, like CrossFit are  good idea.

Double Clutch
This is when a runner exhibits a breathing pattern of breathing out once for every two breaths that is taken in.

DNF
This acronym stands for “did not finish”.

Fartlek
This is a training method that makes use of both continuous and interval training, working both the aerobic and anaerobic systems.

Forefoot strike
Good running technique that the runner exhibits by landing on the forefoot with each stride. Inov-8 shoes are minimalist footwear that promote a forefoot strike during running.

Heel-striking
This is an improper running technique where the runner lands with their heel-first with each stride – it can cause injuries and cramping, for example.

Jack Rabbit
This is when someone starts off a race with a lot of speed.

Junk miles
This refers to running at an easy pace and done in order to achieve a mileage quota for a quantified period of time.

LSD
Refers to “long slow distances”.

Minimalist shoes
These shoes promote proper running form (forefoot strike), sit low to the ground, do not have excessive cushioning, and are flexible.  There are numerous benefits of minimalist shoes.

Negative splits
This is when a runner runs a lot faster in the second half of a race than he did during the first half.

Plantar Fasciitis
A running injury that refers to inflammation of tissue that is between the muscles in the mid-foot and the outer skin on the bottom of the foot.

Pronator
Refers to a running form that entails the inward rotation of the foot.

Splits
Times achieved between marked points during a race or training.

Stitch
A cramp that you get while running , normally appears on the right side, and is sometimes associated with incorrect water consumption during training or a race. Read our article on running and hydration for great tips.

Stride
The distance that is covered in a single step.

Supinator
Running with sufficient inward motion of the foot.

Resting heart-rate
This is your heart-rate when you first wake up and before you get out of bed.

Running economy
This is the measure of how efficiently a person uses oxygen while running at a certain pace.

Tendinitis
Refers to tendons getting inflamed as a result of injury during training or a race.

How many of these running terms did you know? Are there any other running terms that you know?

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