Running can be such an exhilarating activity, but it can also be very tough and feel almost impossible when you’re just starting out. I’d like to offer you some helpful tips that’ll assist you in easing running into your routine and also make it ENJOYABLE! Imagine that 🙂
1. Invest in a good pair of running shoes
This is the biggest investment (other than your time!). There’s no one shoe that works for everyone so head to a specialty running store and shop for a pair that provides the support and fits your foot needs.
2. Warm-up and cool down.
Easing into any activity is always wise and helps prevent injury and burnout. Warm-up and cool down by walking for at least ten minutes. This helps to ease tired muscles and speeds recovery.
3. Maintain good form.
Keep your head up, eyes forward and arms bent at the waist. Shake it out if you need to. Stay light on your feet and keep relaxed. Have fun!
There’s some debate about the best way to stretch for a run. I personally prefer warming up before I run, getting my heart beat up, and stretching areas of my body that “feel” the need after a run. The main thing is to start slow and listen to your body’s cues.
5. Make sure to fuel and hydrate properly.
You don’t want to feel over-stuffed or starving before a run. Eat a light meal or snack one-two hours in advance. You want healthy carbs, fat and protein.
6. Run outside.
The treadmill is great for training but it’s important to get outside as much as possible. Mix up your terrain, try some hills, and even train on your upcoming race course, if possible. It’s also nice to enjoy the beautiful scenery nature has to offer.
7. Sign up for a local race.
Shop around online for a race in your area and give yourself at least six weeks to train for it. The date of a future race will keep you motivated and on track.
8. Make it a group effort and run for a cause.
Ask friends, family members, coworkers or your partner to join you for accountability, camaraderie, and support. Find a local or national charity to represent, or create your own.
9. Join a running club.
Being part of a group, casual or competitive, can help push you to go harder and dig deeper than you may on your own.
10. Walk if you need to, and remember to pamper yourself!
There’s nothing wrong with taking a “walking” break. Don’t push yourself to exhaustion before taking a walking break if you need it, whether during training or during a race.
Take a long soak, hit the steam room, climb in a hot tub or get a massage. Make sure you’re eating healthy, staying hydrated and getting enough sleep. And remember…have FUN! Running is meant to be enjoyable and rejuvenating!