How to start running is a question often asked, particularly at this time of year. refreshYOU Trainer Ing shares her advice based on her own experience.
She says, “There is exercise advice everywhere; blogs, magazines, books, and YouTube to mention a few. No wonder people aren’t quite sure what is the best way to start”.
Her advice is:
- Remember, “movement is living, any kind of movement at any speed is what matters.”
- Start by setting aside a specific time and days in the week to do it.
- Begin with walking. The best place to do this is outdoors. It’s free and let’s face it, who wants to imitate a hamster on a wheel by running on a treadmill?
- Getting outside will make it more enjoyable and contribute to you wanting to do it again.
Her own experience was starting with 1 minute of walking and 30 seconds of jogging.
She also recommends selecting a route to do. “Don’t worry if you can’t complete it. Even if you only move for a short time, it’s a great way to start!
Do the same route the next time and slowly increase your duration based on what you managed previously.”
“Don’t concentrate on speed or distance, focus on trying to complete a walk/jog 2 to 3 times a week”
“After 3 to 4 weeks of regular activity, you should start to feel the difference, your body and mind will be more able to cope and enjoy the activity.”
The next stage is to then start keeping some records. Using an app like Strava which records your routes, speed, distance, elevations and compares them to your previous efforts is a great way. There are others, Mapmyrun to mention one.
Now your efforts will be based on fact rather than a subjective assessment of how you went. Remember to not get carried away with the need to constantly go faster or further. If you enjoy the process you will keep it going forever, which is far more important than being faster or running further.
Ing’s final piece of advice is to make sure you have an end of run ritual that increases the enjoyment.
Stretching is especially important, make sure your body feels relaxed and refreshed afterward. Then the mental reward; Ing favours a cup of coffee on the patio whilst fitting in some extra stretches.
“Perhaps make your reward a run with friends and have a social coffee afterwards. “It will help you look forward to the next time and you can keep each other on track!”
Go on try it!