I am so not an expert on running or being a runner. But I’ve been running for 2 years, have had 2 injuries, one serious and I still love running. Some call me crazy. Whatever.
Lately I’ve had some people ask me about how to get into running and I thought this would be a fantastic idea to post something for anyone to follow!
1. If you want to start running, my first word of advice is start slow! Otherwise you will only cause yourself heartache and possible injuries. All in all, failure.
2. I say you probably want to start with a run/walk program. I started running with C25K and there is even an app for your phone and its free (score!) You start out slow, like walking 2 minutes and running 30 seconds for all of 20 minutes. Easy-peasy. But if thats too much, then start with trying to walk for a full 20 minutes. Once you can do that, then start a run/walk plan. C25K is a 9 week program and by the end you can run for 30 minutes. Or a 5K. I’m currently using a 10K trainer and loving it.
3. Go and get properly fitted with the shoes that are best for you. There are stores that cater just to runners and someone will watch you on a treadmill and analyze your gait, pronation, and how you strike your feet. Once they find a variety of shoes, try them on and run a little bit. Which one gives you that support? Does it feel good, heavy or light? If there is the slightest thing that you don’t like, do not get those. Try another pair.
4. Invest. That means in shoes, gadgets (I’m obsessed with my Garmin Forerunner 405) and clothes. Clothes should be light, loose, and not cotton. Dri-fit is a word you will become accustomed to. And you don’t have to spend loads of money on clothes. I look at TJ Maxx, Marshall’s, and the best…Goodwill. Yep, Goodwill. They have some pretty good finds, you need to look. And sometimes you will have to pay full price for certain items, like my compression socks. I will pay over $40. Because they work and I can’t find them cheap.
5. Hydrate. Drink more water than usual, especially since summer is coming. Carry some water with you on ALL runs. Just drink water, and drink low-fat chocolate milk after a run. Don’t believe me? Go read all about it.
6. Eat. Before, during, after. If you enjoy running and want to go further, start bringing some sort of snack to eat to keep your energy up. I love Clif Shot Bloks, Powerbar gummies (cola is my fav), and Gu. Swedish Fish are amaze as well.
7. Decide if you want to run for time or distance. Not both, otherwise you will be so critical and hard on yourself. I know from experience.
8. Enjoy it! You are making a decision that will make you healthier, you’ll have less stress (unless you become consumed by running and trying to run 24/7), and you will be able to call yourself a runner.
For me, I enjoy running because its a time where I focus on me. I find great pleasure in pushing my body to its limit in the end and being covered in sweat. I love blasting whatever music I want and just losing myself in the moment. I like racing, I like being slow and I like running.
What advice would you give to a new runner or someone who is interested in running?