OK, so maybe I’m jumping the gun a little. After all, we have a few more days of the year. And I, for one, am enjoying chilling with my kids and playing with our new Christmas gifts.
But, the new year is coming soon and with it lots of resolutions. And there will be lots of new runners out there. Since I’ve come back to running several times (two pregnancies where I did not run, plus a handful of injuries) and I’ve taken the RRCA coach training, I thought I’d share my tips for becoming a runner.
Whether you’ve been a runner in the past or never run before, the key to starting running is to get out there. Take that first step. Walk out your front door or hop on that treadmill and start to move. It really is that simple. And it’s really not.
*Disclaimer: I don’t know you. We’ve never met. Before you take my advice, please talk to your doctor and make sure it’s safe for you to run.*
1. Get some good shoes. Shoes are the most important equipment that runners use. You want to make sure your shoes are supportive and appropriate for your body. I’d recommend going to a local running store if you can. They can make recommendations of what shoes will work best for you. (Eventually you will likely want to invest in good socks and clothing made of wicking material, but you don’t have to do that right away.)
2. Find a plan (I recommend the couch to 5K program or checking out Jeff Galloway’s run/walk method), but remember to start where you are. By that I mean if you can only walk for 15 minutes, don’t expect your body to necessarily cooperate with a plan that asks for more. Build slowly up to where a plan starts or repeat plan weeks as necessary. And if you are returning to running, don’t expect your body to jump right back to where you left off. (Trust me, I’ve learned that one the hard way.)
3. Take it slow. You don’t have to run hard to build your endurance. Run easy and build your mileage. There’s always time to train for speed later. It’s better to be slow than too push too hard and burn yourself out.
4. Listen to your body. It’s ok to be uncomfortable, but you should be able to talk and you shouldn’t feel actual pain. If you can only huff out a word or two, you are running too hard. Slow down or take a walk break if you can’t talk. (If you like techie stuff, this is where a heart rate monitor would be useful.)
5. Sometimes running isn’t fun. There. I said it. Even those of us who have been running for years have runs that suck. But if you’re listening to your body and your breathing is ok and nothing hurts? Then, by all means, keep going. Because I’m a firm believer that the sucky runs make the awesome runs that much better.
Good luck with your first runs and here’s to the addiction that running is!
Today, I’m hooking up with Cynthia, Mar, and Courtney for the Friday Five and Jill Conyers for her Friday Fitness link up. I’ve also linked up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs. I’m also indulging in a few holiday beers, after squeezing in a few more miles for the year.
Any bets on how many miles I’ll get to total? I’m at 1033 and I have a half marathon on Sunday!
17 thoughts on “New Year, New Runner”
I have a half Sunday too. It looks like warm and humid conditions AGAIN for me. Bleah. Hope you have great weather and a great race!
Great tips as always!
This is great! I would love to show this to my non running friends. And let them know anyone can start.
Great tips. I would also add, stay with it, running is hard at first, but you will eventually get to that running high and it feels so great !
Although I’m not new to running by any means, I feel like I am after taking like a 7 month hiatus. I got on the treadmill the other day and was shocked how slow I was and how short I could actually run for. I shouldn’t have been so surprised but I liked these tips to keep me in perspective.
Great tips! Especially #1 – so important!
Great tips! :] I’m planning to start running-ish again soon, so I’ll definitely be keeping these in mind!
You told running’s dirty little secret! 😉 Yes, sometimes it is not fun. But it really does make the great runs that much more meaningful. Good luck tomorrow!
These are great tips for getting into running. I y se;f a, just getting back into running after having my second baby at the end of September. I am glad you highlighted going slow and listening to your body. I know that was a tough one for me (not being able to jump back into training like I was when I was racing previously.) But it is so worth it, I have spent the past three months preparing my body to handle marathon training, which starts this week! So excited, and so pleased to see how our bodies can bounce back after something as dramatic as having a kido, pretty awesome stuff. Cheers, and good luck on you half!
I say 1050!! make it clean 🙂 great tips!
Perfect tips! Especially love the last one – haha!
Congrats on your last half of the year!! Did you get to 1050?
Good shoes and taking it slow are two of my favorite tips! If you try to hard when you are a beginner you might get discouraged!
I have taken a few weeks off from running but have continued with my Pure Barre classes. January is my go month to get my feet back out there. Love to run 🙂
OMG why am I crossed off your linkup list?! Sad!!! 🙁
Great list anyhow! Thanks for linking up!
I fixed it. I have no idea why it did that – there was nothing in the html to indicate it was doing that. Sorry!!!
Great, timeless info. (I wrote a post once called Sometimes Running is Hard 🙂 ). Thanks for linking up!