It doesn’t get easier – you get better. In other words, you increase your endurance. It’s any athlete’s goal – whether it’s to run faster, longer, or train for a physically demanding event. Building endurance powers you through physical activities at your peak.
Whether you’re beginning a fitness routine or trying to break out of a training plateau, knowing a few endurance-boosting strategies can enhance your strength, agility and speed. Put these steps into practice and a distance, speed or weight you find challenging now will be effortless in the future:
Mastering movement needs to be done purposefully. Easy-paced training can help build endurance without risking injury. The old adage remains resolute here: slow and steady wins the race. If you’re a runner, try adding one mile per week to a long run on a weekend. Start at two miles, then three, four, five. Every fourth week, skip the long run to rest and recover. On the fifth week, start increasing your mileage again – aiming for six miles. Patience pays off.
The EVO philosophy of movement is that it should be a continual interaction between ourselves and the environment. By training consistently, you’ll increase your aerobic capacity (the amount of oxygen your muscles can use), making your muscles stronger and endurance mightier. Aim for three to four sessions every week, training for 30 minutes or more. One should be a longer training session, such as an hour-long swim every Saturday.
This can help both physical and mental endurance. We’ve advocated going at it long and slow, but if you’re mid-workout and your heart rate isn’t raised, you’re not building optimal endurance. But high-paced exercise causes build-up of lactic acid, which slows you down. To help stamina and lactic acid resistance, switching things up with shorter, high-intensity sessions can be a good way to clear lactic acid from your bloodstream faster. It’ll also help make those longer training sessions feel easier and improve your speed.
Nothing is more important for endurance than getting enough sleep. The more you’re challenging yourself and pushing your body to its limit, the more important it is to get properly rested between training sessions. That means getting at least eight hours of sleep every night and not working out too close to bedtime. The last hour of our day should be spent with little stimulation – so no late-night training.
To build endurance, you must eat for endurance. Proper nutrition is crucial for stamina-increasing success. If you’re a runner, carbs such as whole grains, brown rice and oats are key to ensuring you have enough energy before a long trail. Avoid refined food and sugar – you’ll get a spike but crash shortly after. After training, you’ve got an optimal window of about half an hour to eat a protein-rich meal. This way you can absorb the necessary nutrients to recover between sessions – taking you into your next workout with even more power.