Family, work, energy, and time all go into the mix when determining when and how far the next race will be. Is a half marathon on your bucket list? Can you find the time to train? Do you want to run all of the Destination Races at least once? Can you maintain your running in order to do that? Only runners really understand how much time and planning goes into the choice to run in an event. If it isn’t the training, it might be the travel. Even local races can be inconvenient if it means getting up at the crack of dawn. However, once that finger clicks on the “Register Now” button, the commitment has begun and there is no looking back. All levels of runners need to have some sort of training program or guideline to get them to the finish line and reach their running goal, whatever that might be. With the plethora of training programs available to you, here are some helpful tips that may help you find that right one for your goal, time frame and lifestyle. 1. Build a running base: Be comfortable with running at least two or three miles before you think about starting a training program. 2. Determine your goal: Find one that fits your goals for the race you are running. There are all types of programs out there from running only three days a week up to six. All claim to have you ready for that race. Some just want to finish at a decent time, and maybe PR. Other runners just want to be able to cross that finish line. 3. Stick to it: Once you find one you like, stick to it. It is safe to bet that most of the ones out there will get you into race-ready material. Jumping back and forth or switching half way through will only cost you time and take away from your training. 4. Make your body your #1 coach: Listen to your body. It doesn’t matter if the training program you have chosen requires you to add on two miles this week. If your body says you can only add one mile on, trust it. Pushing it will only cause injury. 5. Location, location, location: No matter where you live, on those long runs where you are increasing your distance, find a place you LOVE to run. A beautiful scene does wonders for your mind and motivation when you are pushing that extra mile or two.