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The Ultimate Guide on How to Start Running

No doubt, running is an excellent exercise. Probably, you have heard people talk about fitness, running, jogging, sprints, sweating a lot, high-intensity intervals, and everything related to it. Yeah, I know, It’s like an alien language. I still remember when I first started running. I didn’t even think that my shoes were too tight until my feet hurt!

For some people, running is their second nature. If they are not running, they are probably jogging! When you see them running, they make it seem too easy. But this is not the case for everyone.

Some people find it difficult to find motivation to start running. Some can’t find time to fit running in their schedule. And most people, it seems, don’t know how to start!

Later when I started running, I never thought I would like it. It is as if I have fallen in love with it! You know why? Because:

1. It can help you lose and manage your weight.

I may have started out running to shake off some weight. Guess what? A 30-minute run with a 5mph pace burns about 350 calories on average. Faster pace means more calories burned. If you are trying to lose weight, you must plan the number of calories you eat and the length of your workout.

2. Running makes you stronger.

No matter how athletic you already are, even if you are regularly playing basketball, soccer, tennis, or swimming, you can still benefit from running. With running, you can build not just your cardiovascular health, you get to build strength and stamina as well. A good runner can easily take on some everyday activities without breaking a sweat.

3. Running strengthens your cardio health.

Now, running, along with other exercises, have been proven to be a great way to maintain and optimize cardio health. As you run faster and faster, our hearts also beat faster and faster. To accommodate our physical activity, the heart pumps more blood. This exercise readies the heart and strengthens it to have a more effective pump.

4. A good run can help relieve stress.

Running releases endorphins (happy hormones) that can help you shake off gloomy feelings. When you run regularly, you will start to get that runner’s high that everyone is talking about!

5. It can help combat depression.

When you are depressed and feeling down, a good run can help you pick yourself up. Though it may be hard to force yourself to go up and hit the road when you are feeling down, it can significantly help you.

6. Running can help you improve and normalize your sleep.

Are you having trouble sleeping at night? Running can help you address that. When you run, you consume and burn off that energy which in turn will make you tired and fall asleep at night as normal people do!

But the problem is…

You don’t know how to start.

The main reason why many people don’t run (even though we already know how beneficial it can be) is because they don’t know where or how they should start.

What are the equipment or gears they may need? What type of diet do you need to take on? How should your running route and plan look like? Are there are any medications that you need? If so, what are they? What are the mistakes you should avoid? These are all the questions that prevent us from running and this post is designed to help you answer all of these!

Well, how will this post help you start running? By the end of this post, you will be able to know everything you need to know how to get started on running (and stick to it!).

What to Know and How to Prepare for The Best Running Experience

It’s true that all you need to start running is your will and your legs. Yep, in the most literal sense, that’s all you need. But, some things can make your running experience better. Your shoe, for example, helps you protect your feet while you run. Everyone agrees to that, right?

Here are some of the things that can make running better, safer, and more enjoyable.

Gears

Let’s give gears the little spotlight as the right gears can help you to run safely and more efficiently. Let’s look at the important gears and the other stuff that can give you a better running experience.

1. Shoes

Not all shoes are created equal. While running, shoes are your best friend. If you don’t have the right pair, you will end up hurting yourself. The right shoe, on the other hand, will protect your feet and give you comfort while you run.

Here are some things you want to look for in your running shoes.

Shape


The first thing you need to do is to find a shoe shape relative to your feet. If you have a wide foot or bunions, go for shoes that have bigger toe room. This will help accommodate your feet better and have a nice snug fit while you are stomping on them.

If you have slim and slender foot, don’t go for wide-toed shoes. Your toes would be too much space to wriggle inside and you may end up with some blisters because of the friction. Remember, your foot should fit in snuggly.

Too much room means blisters and too little room means foot pain. Remember that.

Size


Though ordering shoes online is convenient, it’s not ideal. Particularly for a running shoe, you want to try it on and get the right size. Different shoes are made with a different thickness of the cushion. You won’t be able to tell how it fits unless you have tried it on.

The thickness of the cushion may prompt to go half a size bigger or smaller. Exchanging products online can be a little of a hassle so go ahead and visit an actual shoe store instead.

For a guide on how to choose the right shoe size, check out this video:

Cushion


Shoe cushion determines how comfortable your foot is while you are running. But, if you look into the details carefully, thicker cushion is not always better. Your socks will add up to the cushion, and if it’s too thick, it could tighten the shoe. If it’s too thin, you will get blisters. So, it’s crucial to determine the thickness of your socks relative to the cushion of your shoes.

With that in mind, you need to find the right amount of cushion for you. When fitting a running shoe, make sure you are wearing your running socks. Yep, the one you will be using when you run.

2. Socks

Socks will depend on your preference and the cushion of your shoes. It’s important to wear the right thickness of socks while running to avoid slipping inside your shoes. There are socks that have rubberized grip at the bottom. This is great especially if you are sprinting. This gives you more traction.

3. Clothing

Basically, you can wear anything that fits to your liking. But having some drifit (moisture-wicking) running shorts and jersey can make a great difference especially in the hot summer days. These drifit materials can wick moisture and make you more comfortable when you are sweating a lot.

Some fabric may feel heavy on the skin and gets soaked with your sweat. A moisture-wicking fabric is your best choice.

In cold winter, it would be difficult to feel the burn while you run. The proper gear can help you sweat out. A sweatshirt and sweatpants can help you warm-up quickly.

4. Waist Pack

You may think that with such short distance that you travel, you don’t need a water bottle. But, you know what, you need water. Even if you’re not running a marathon, it would always be handy to have a bottle of water ready.

You can go for a sports bottle and hold it while you are running or you can have a waist pack where you can have your bottle secured. If you aren't using it, maybe you can offer it to a runner in distress. It would be a great help.

5. Knee and Ankle Support

A knee support is not a must. Many people run without these and encounter no problem at all. But, if you have some kind of knee or ankle injury in the past, wearing one can help you prevent from reactivating that injury or aggravating it.

6. Accessories

Aside from the basic stuff you need, there are other things that would be nice to have like:

  • Heart rate monitor

A heart rate monitor can help you track your heart rate, obviously, so you can easily adjust your pace according to your heart rate.

  • Sunglasses

Sun protection is a must not just for your skin but for your eyes as well. If you love running in the morning or in the afternoon, wearing sunglasses can help you go a long way in protecting your eyes from the sun.

  • Earphones

I will not advise listening to music if you are running on the city sidewalks. It is dangerous to wear earphones while running around the city. However, if you are running at the park or on a treadmill, having earphones can make your run fun and worthwhile. You can play upbeat music to help set your running mood.

Tip: If you really want to make running worthwhile, you can listen to podcasts, tutorials, or ebooks to learn or be entertained while you are running.

   

Running and The Kitchen

Maybe you are wondering how the kitchen is involved in your running experience. Well, for one, if you don’t eat, you will be too weak to run. I think that’s a pretty extreme analogy. But, let’s face it, what we put in our mouth can affect our body function. Eat too much of something, and you can get some form of imbalance in your system.

Now, when you start running, you may need to plan your diet to reap the benefits of exercise. If you are trying to lose weight, exercise can help you burn more calories. But, regulating your food consumption plays the most important part. When you do strenuous physical activity, you will be hungry. This is the body’s response to replenish the calories you burn. But, when you are trying to lose some weight, you need a deficit in your caloric burn and consumption.

Carbohydrates

This gives you energy. If you don’t eat much, your body will burn your fat deposits instead. If you eat too much of potatoes, pasta, rice, bread, and the likes, you will build that fat deposit. So, it’s important to measure how much you burn to determine how much you should eat.

Protein

Protein is the building blocks of muscles. When you work out, yes, whatever form of workout, you strain your muscle, and it needs to be repaired and strengthened by the body. Protein will play a crucial role in growing your muscles and in its recovery. If you don’t eat enough, your body will lack the necessary building block to make your muscles bigger and stronger.

Fat

Contrary to what we all know and what food manufacturers advertise. we need to eat fat to maintain optimal body function. Fats are the next energy source after carbohydrates. Aside from that, they also help metabolize some vitamins that are not soluble in water.

Fiber

There are, basically, two types of fiber. That is soluble and insoluble fiber. The insoluble fiber helps your digestive tract and keep it in top shape. The soluble fiber, on the other hand, helps sweep anomalies particles in the blood and blood vessels to keep it in great working condition. This helps you have a great blood flow where it is needed.

Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamins and minerals, commonly found in fruits and vegetables, help in the absorption and digestion. So, it’s like something that optimizes the nutrients from the food we eat. These two also helps boost our immune system.

Running and healthy eating habit, when combined, can help you prevent a lot of chronic illnesses in the future. Imagine, simply eating the right types of food and exercise can help you prevent hospital bills!

The Diet Plan

It would be hard to point you out to a perfect formula of what to eat. But, here’s a generic option many runner’s base their diets on. It’s simple, but you need to measure your basal metabolic rate to find out how much deficit or increase you need to lose weight or gain mass.

  • 60% Carbohydrates
  • 20% Protein
  • 20% Fat

Of course, this is not absolute. If you want to lose some weight, you may decrease your carbohydrate intake and add more protein. But do not go below 40% carbohydrates. You may lose some weight quickly with, but you may not be able to perform your best.

Give your food intake a good attention. Paula Radcliff, a three-time women’s marathon record holder, insist that you should eat the right type of food in enough quantity to support your training and recovery.

Supplementation

There are times that we would not be able to eat all the right stuff and we may miss on our daily recommended dose of vitamins and minerals. You incorporate vitamins supplements to your diet. If you feel like there will not be enough protein in your diet for the whole day, you can go for protein shakes. That would be great for muscle repair and growth!

Hydration

When I started running, there were times that I feel weak and can’t seem to keep up with my pace. You know what I found out? Hydration plays a huge role in your performance. When you don’t have enough water intake, your mouth will feel dry, and your muscle may feel weak.

Well, hydration is not just about drinking lots of water. Electrolytes is another factor that affects your performance. Adding a pinch of salt for every glass of water helps you avoid getting dehydrated. But if you are planning on running some long distance, a sports drink is formulated with sugar and electrolytes to help you recover.

Sore Muscles, Medication, and Remedies

Running, or any form of strenuous physical activity will result in strained and sore muscles. It’s only natural. We all have to face this. There is no way to skip this part. But as you progress, your muscles will be used to running that sore muscles will just be some simple discomfort you can go through daily.

I especially warn the beginners. If you have been inactive for a couple of months or years, there will be tremendous muscle pain at the beginning of your journey. So, here are some ways to deal with them so that you know what to do when you get there.

  • Warm Shower
  • Warm Compress
  • Sauna
  • Ibuprofen
  • Other Pain Medication

A hot shower is one of the best ways to reduce pain that has an immediate effect. The warm water increases the blood flow in the body which brings all the necessary nutrients to repair the muscle and ease the pain. This is one of my favorite ways to get instant relief from aching muscles, aching back, or even a headache. I promise you will enjoy hot showers and baths!

Make It Happen

Now, we are getting ready to run! But before that, you have to decide where you will run. Will it be the park or the neighborhood? Some people are not comfortable running outdoors, I’m aware of that. A treadmill is a perfect choice.

And you know what, even if you are an outdoors person, a treadmill will still be of great use for you. There will be times that the weather will not permit you to run outside. Rain, snow, blizzard, or hail are perfect excuses not to workout, right? But, if you have a treadmill at home or a gym membership, you won’t have an excuse to not reach your goal!

I know, somehow, maybe you still don’t know how to start. Let me give you a detailed sample schedule. This sample schedule will help you start off and lose some weight effectively.

For individuals who are not active yet, you may find it difficult to sustain continuous running. Our goal here is to get you started. So, this detailed table can serve as your guide for 8-weeks.

WEEK 1


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Take a 30-minute walk

Take a 30-minute walk

Take a 30-minute walk

Take a 30-minute walk

Take a 30-minute walk

Rest and spend time with your loved ones

Rest and spend time with your loved ones

The goal of the first week is to get you familiar with the location where you plan to run. This is to get your muscles a little-worked up. This is especially advised if you are a few pounds overweight and also for the elderly.

But if you feel like this is too easy, you can skip this and proceed to week 2 immediately.

WEEK 2


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Walk for 2 minutes, then alternate 1 minute running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 2 minutes, then alternate 1 minute running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 2 minutes, then alternate 1 minute running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Spend time with your loved ones

Spend time with your loved ones

The goal of the second week is to get you running! This is designed to get you started without getting your muscles sore too much. But, expect some muscular discomfort especially on the third day.

WEEK 3


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 2 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 2 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 2 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Spend time with your loved ones

Spend time with your loved ones

Week three is another relaxed pace to get you familiar and comfortable with your pace. The 4th week will start to pick up and become a little more difficult. Mend your sore muscles with a hot shower, bath, or sauna.

WEEK 4


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 3 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 4 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 5 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Spend time with your loved ones

Spend time with your loved ones

Don’t focus your mind on adding speed to your training. The important thing is to move non-stop to continuously burn calories. Five minutes of continuous running may seem a bit tough, right? But hey, you are on your fourth week here. You have already gained strength by now!

As you get stronger, you can easily build your speed and mileage.

WEEK 5


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 6 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 7 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 8 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Spend time with your loved ones

Spend time with your loved ones

By this time, you will feel your significant gain in your strength. A few flights of stairs will seem to be easier. And I bet you have lost a few pounds!

WEEK 6


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 10 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 12 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 14 minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Spend time with your loved ones

Spend time with your loved ones

Week six may seem too much when you just read it. But hey, you are a lot stronger when you get to week 6!

WEEK 7


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Walk for 1 minute, then alternate 14minutes of running. Repeat until you reach 30 minutes.

Take a 30-minute walk

Run for 16 minutes, walk for a minute, then run up to 30 minutes

Take a 30-minute walk

Run for 18 minutes, walk for a minute, then run up to 30 minutes

Spend time with your loved ones

Spend time with your loved ones

Notice how much minutes are added? It may look too much, but hey, wait until you get there. You will enjoy it too!

WEEK 8


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Run for 20 minutes, walk for a minute, then run up to 30 minutes

Take a 30-minute walk

Run for 24 minutes, walk for a minute, then run up to 30 minutes

Take a 30-minute walk

Run for 30 minutes, walk for a minute, then run up to 30 minutes

Spend time with your loved ones

Spend time with your loved ones

The last day will mark how much stronger you have become. This is an 8-week journey that will make you a stronger runner and lose weight at the same time.

Remember, as you get more mileage, you burn more calories, and your body signals you to replenish that lost calories by saying you are hungry. Surely, when you follow this schedule, you will gain more strength. When you follow a good diet regimen, you will surely lose weight and tone your body!

Remember, even the fastest man in the world, Usain Bolt, says that anyone can train and become better with a structured training and consistent program. The key is sticking to your schedule and taking it slowly.

For Older Adults


For seasoned individuals who wish to start running to lose weight, gain strength, or just for a hobby, it would be best to ask your physician and have yourself checked if you can do strenuous activities. Generally, you can follow the table above and perform lower intensity running.

For Children


Basically, you can follow the same training method mentioned above. The only difference is you have to keep your child motivated. Unlike adults with definite goals of losing weight and gaining strength, kids may not have the eagerness to exercise. So, a reward for a job well done,

Mindful Running

Have you ever heard of mindful running? Well, this is how all runners should run. We should all run mindfully! Why? Because this is a way to keep your body in check while you are exercising. If you just run without minding your pace, your stride, your posture, and your breathing, you will tire easily and you may even get yourself injured. So, every runner must be aware of this.

To know the benefits of mindful running, check out this video:

The Running Posture

It all starts with walking. Before we started running, we first learned to walk. Then as we learned to manipulate our muscles forcefully, we began to learn jogging and eventually, running. But before digging into the details, let me define the best running posture to avoid getting injured.

Many people have engaged in running but failed to recognize and perfect their running forms. This may result in soreness and worse, injuries. Here’s are some ways to fix your running posture.

Get more idea on how to practice the proper running form by watching this video:

  • Lean forward

Running in good form starts with leaning forwards. Leaning forward as if you are freely falling will signal the body to compensate and move forward. As you consciously lean forward, you will be in constant motion to avoid falling on your face.

This simple technique can spur you to run with the proper alignment of the body. But, many people fail to recognize this and bounce too much as they run.

  • Let your arms swing forward naturally.

Have you ever thought why we need to sway our hands back and forth while walking? Now that I’ve mentioned it, don’t you think it’s funny? Try walking without swinging your arms to feel the difference!

We naturally sway our hands while we walk to maintain our center of gravity. When you run, you will notice that you also naturally lift your hands and swing it back and forth even without thinking about it. We just learn it by instinct.

After reading this, I know you will be more aware of it! Now, there really is nothing special with this arm swinging. You just have to loosen your shoulders while running to avoid sore muscles.

  • Stride

As you lean forward, your foot would step ahead of you to catch your weight. Be mindful of your stride and bend your knees a little higher as you normally would when walking.

Pete Larson, the one who wrote Tread Lightly: Form, Footwear, and the Quest for Injury-Free Running, advises that we must be especially mindful of our stride. Longer stride, for one, let’s us cover more mileage. However, without the proper technique, we can over stride and shift the center of our gravity off the balance. This could lead to injuries. Shorter strides, according to Pete, is best, especially for beginners.

  • Landing

This is where many beginner runners fail. Have you observed how graceful toddlers run on barefoot? We might want to take a lesson from them! When we land on our heels, instead of the balls of our feet, it generates more pressure on the ankles, knees, hips, and spine.

So, in the long run, this could lead to chronic disabilities. This is why proper landing is one of the most important things you should be aware of when running.

It is more natural to land on the balls of your feet when running barefoot. But, because we are wearing padded and cushioned running shoes, we become less aware of this and often land our feet flat on the ground. That is why we all need to be extra conscious and mindful about our stride and landing.

The Breathing Technique

Aside from the posture and stride, another important thing we should all take in mind is breathing while running. I have talked to many beginners who can’t seem to catch their breath after a few minutes of running. Why? Well, the most common problem is inefficient breathing method.

When we perform any strenuous physical activity, our heart rate rises to pump more blood where it is needed. Now, naturally, we are stimulated to breathe faster to bring more oxygen to the blood and provide the body with oxygen-rich blood. Thus, increased heart rate and increased respiration.

If you don’t find your rhythm and correct pacing, you will run out of breath and, definitely, you won’t cover more mileage.

  • Count your steps

When you start running, you may not be aware of your stride or your breathing cycle. But, the first step to finding your rhythm is counting your steps. Here’s a neat trick from military training, shout “left, right, left, right, left, right, left” as you land your feet. Or you could just say it in your mind.

When you are able to do this, start counting “1,2,3,4,1,2,3,4,1,2,3,4” as you land your feet.

  • Sync your breath

Now that you are conscious about your pace, count your breath as you synchronize it with your steps. Inhale every two or four counts and exhale every two to four counts. If you can’t maintain this pattern, you may be going too fast. If you can’t seem to catch your breath and lock it with the rhythm, you may need to adjust to a slower pace.

The Stages of Running

Reading this far gives me a clue that you are ready to run! This is going to be fine! I know you are excited to start and anxious that you may not do running well. But hey, give yourself a break. The techniques and schedule may be overwhelming, but, nobody will judge you for not making mistakes! Remember this, you are way ahead than those who are not exercising at all!

Here we go!

Pre-Running Stage: Limber Up

Before you work out, this applies to whatever exercise you will do, you want to limber up and stretch your muscles first. You want to make sure that you prime your muscles with good blood flow to avoid muscle cramps.

It’s important to warm-up and stretches the whole body. Not just your legs, okay?

This video can help you to limber up:

1. Head rotation

2. Arm rotation

3. Torso twist and side to side

4. Hip rotation

5. Quad stretch

6. Touch the ground (hamstring stretch)

7. Do 10 squats

8. Do 30 Jumping jacks

Now, you’re ready to run! That should raise your heart rate a little bit and prime your muscles.

Stage I. Start with a Walk


Start walking vigorously and pick up to a brisk walk. Maintain this pace for at least two minutes before breaking into a slow-paced jog.

Stage II. Slow-paced Jog


Generally, a slow-paced jog is about as fast as your brisk walk but with more involvement of the lower and upper body. Keep this pacing for about five to eight minutes and go for a full-paced jog.

Stage III. Full-paced Jog


This term is quite vague, and there is no absolute rule on how you should do it. But generally, it has more intensity, and you will easily overtake walking people with your pace. A full jog pace is about 5mph. Maintain this phase for another five to eight minutes and feel your heart pump vigorously.

Stage IV. Run


This is the part where you get the runner’s high everyone is talking about! Increase your pace to about 7-8 mph. If you don’t know how fast this is, time yourself and you should cover about a mile for every seven and a half to nine minutes. Run for 5-10 minutes. Then reduce your pace to a full-paced jog or do a sprint.

Stage V. Sprint


If you are up to the challenge, go for a sprint! How, you ask? There really is no definite formula for that. If you feel like you have the energy to do it, sprint with all your might for 10 seconds.Don’t force it. Gradually work your way up and add a few seconds to your sprint every week.

Post-Running Stage. Cooling Down

Gradually decrease your speed to a full-paced jog and do this for a couple of minutes, two to three minutes to decrease your heart rate. Then continue to decrease your pace to a slow-paced jog for another two to three minutes then go for a brisk walk.

Cool down for another few minutes, and you’re done! How does it feel? Feels good, right? Now, don’t forget to rehydrate!

Distance Running

Running the distance is a different story. If you are planning on racing a half marathon, marathon, or ultramarathon, you are looking at an insane training method. Did you know that the world record for the fastest person who finished a marathon is 2:02:57? How fast was Dennis Kipruto Kimetto running? Well, he got an average of roughly 4:42 minutes per mile or about 13mph.

Back in the days, about a century ago, records tell us that people used to finish marathons at nearly three hours. Now, people have been seriously training and have set the bar, high! The elite marathoners finish their races just a bit more than two hours!

Now, can you imagine how insane they have been training? Here we are struggling to sprint for thirty seconds, and there they are running non-stop for hours at an insane pace!

Let’s Hear It From The Experts

1. Just start.

You don’t have to start like Usain Bolt running all crazy! This guy can run 100meters in less than ten seconds! That is truly outstanding! But even Usain himself encourages people not to start with where he is. It took him an insane amount of training before getting there. The important thing is to start your journey. Now.

2. Invest in shoes.

John Hanc, the author of The Essential Runner, advises us to spend money on shoes. Not an insane amount of money, but a decent amount of money for quality. According to him, a $60 shoe can keep up with you up to 500 miles. The right shoe can prevent joint and leg pain in the long run.

3. Don’t forget to eat carbs before running.

Joan Samuelson, an Olympic marathon champion, says that we have to listen to our stomach. Our body tells us cue when we need to eat. When we get hungry, it means something. So, eat and give your body a favor. But, of course, watch out what you are eating. You don’t want to put junk on your body!

Eat a few ounces of carbs an hour before running so that you can avoid hypoglycemia. Just in case, bring a hard candy while you run!

4. Find a way to run.

When things get too busy, it’s easy to let go of running and finish all the stuff that needs to be done. But Dr. Duncan Macdonald, former U.S. record holder at 5000, says that a fifteen-minute run is better than not exercising at all. You can go for a quick run, then take a shower, and continue with the busy life. No excuses! You will lose weight and become stronger little by little.

5. Listen to your body.

You can run and go through discomforts and distractions and be done with it. But when there is pain, listen carefully. Pain is a signal that there might be injury says Dr. George Sheehan. Stop and observe the pain. Monitor it and consult a physician if it doesn’t go away. After all, you wouldn’t want to end up with chronic disabilities, right?

6. Stretch, but don’t overstretch to prevent injury.

Stretching before running is a must. It primes the legs of the much-needed blood flow and gets you ready for exercise. However, be mindful of your stretching routine and don’t overdo it according to Tim Noakes, M.D., author of Lore of Running. Your flexibility will increase overtime, but if you force it, you might pull a muscle!

7. Take long rests if needed.

At the first symptom of injury, Pattisue Plumer, two-time U.S. Olympian, says that you should take time off and rest for a week. It’s better to skip a week than to spend months at the hospital.

8. Rest regularly.

When you get the hang of running, you will realize how addictive it is. You may even want to run every day! But, Bruce Fordyce, nine-time Comrades Marathon champion from South Africa, advises planning your training and rest days carefully. Rest days are recommended to allow your muscles to recover and regain strength. Going on for long periods without rest will only be counterproductive and may not move you closer to your goals.

9. Maintain a sustainable pace.

Lorraine Moller tells us that we should not hurry the progress. Our muscles need time to rest and recover to become stronger. If we force it, we may get injured, and we may not be able to move forward as intended.

10. Run with a companion.

If you are having trouble running by yourself, a fitness app called Jaha helps you find a companion. Running with a companion can help you keep track of your pace and make the whole experience a lot more fun.

11. Run with a pooch.

If you find it terribly boring to run by yourself, Runnersworld advises us to run with a pooch. Running with a dog by your side can make running more fun and can help you lock with your pace. Having a dog by your side make your workout dynamic too!

Don’t Say Later, Start Now

With all the stuff you read here, wouldn’t you want to go out and run now? Enough with all the reasons not to go! Is it the rain? Go for a treadmill! You see, the benefits of running outweigh all the muscle soreness in the world!

We are all convinced that exercise can help us lead a better and healthier life, right? Now, go pick up a pen and calendar. Determine the best time for you to run. Take out your running gear and put it in your bag or somewhere you could see it. Just make it available. When you are ready, go out that door and hit the road!

Sara Smith
 

My name is Sara Smith, the proud owner of the blog and the writer of all the articles that you can see on this website. It is my goal to share my knowledge to all of you and to provide valuable learnings in one way or another.

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