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I have been running for several years. I ran shorter distances and sprints. I would like to try longer distances but don’t know anything about long run sideeffects. I heard some nasty things about long runs so I am reluctant to start such race. Can you tell me something about long runs?

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Don’t worry. Rumors are just that, rumors. There are several side effects you have to take into consideration. One of them is over exhaustion. If you are over trained and exhausted your immune system maybe down and you may be prone to various kinds of infections. So get plenty of rest and don’t push too hard. Second, if you don’t have high quality running shoes you may experience black toenails and some of them may even fall off. If you buy good running shoes that fit your type of foot you will not have such problems.
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Get some running shoes with more stability compared to what you would use in sprints. That's obvious.

If you are used to sprints and short runs (800m? mile?), then you should look up training schedules for something like 5k or 10k to see if you even like distance running.

Don't try to run a 5k after training for 2 weeks, either. You won't get the desired results and will give up before you even really get started. Try training for 2 - 6 months to gauge if it is what you are really after.

If not, the distance running can only help with middle distance training.

D
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