Is running one of your resolutions for 2015? Still haven’t started? No biggie, we’re in the second week of January. You can start whenever you want. Why start specifically in January if you also have February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November aaaand December? Anyhow, if you want to get started and don’t know how: I’ll tell you how I got started (for the record, after many attempts, it all started from July 2011 and on).
- You probably own a phone. Even if it’s not a (smart) phone, there must be some kind of timer on it. Use that. In the beginning it’s all about run-walk intervals. You can also download some running apps. There are a lot on the market like: Nikeplus, Strava (the more competitive kind), Runkeeper, etc.
- Find a proper running schedule for beginners. Don’t aim to high. If you’re of normal weight you can pick a beginner’s schedule for 5k or maybe one for 10k (with enough weeks to build up to). If you’re (slightly) overweight focus on minutes, maybe start with a few weeks of long walks before you start running.
- Wear any comfy/sporty clothes you have. You’re just getting started. Or buy some of the cheaper brands. Essential for women is a sports bra. Because you want to run comfortable (no bouncing around please) and don’t want to damage the breast tissue (unless you want saggy boobs).
- Shoes. Yes, what to say here. The most important gear. I was lucky. I once bought a pair of Asics running shoes for Physical Education in my Senior year at High School. And I used them for every attempt at running (for four years, yes). At first they were alright, but after two months of running my knee started to hurt. The shoes were worn out and the soles got hard over the years.
I went to a store specialized in running shoes and got new shoes fitted for my running style. I really recommend that. Please do not run on chucks or other sneakers. The soles are too flat and don’t offer any cushioning for your feet (I know because I’ve done that once).
- Find a route in your neighborhood! Pay attention to any other runners you see around. What area they run in, is there a popular loop? You can also create your own routes on Map My Run for example.
- Make a fun playlist! It’ll get you through the runs. Don’t count the minutes on the stopwatch ;). Enjoy the songs. I counted the songs I ran to. Pop songs are on average three minutes long. If you ran to four songs, you ran twelve minutes. That’s great!
Don’t worry about:
- Bringing a water bottle: the distances wont be that long. Drink enough in advance, you’ll learn how much your body needs. Maybe in hot weather, but you wont need it for a run shorter than 5 k. Even for 10k it’s not that necessary.
- Your pace: you’re just starting out. Run at a comfortable pace, where you’re able to talk. Later you can focus on speed.
- Other people: Ok. You’re exercising in public. If you’re uncomfortable with that, try to run in the morning or evening. You could also run with a friend, or ask if someone wants to cycle next to you. Best way: don’t give a F***! 😀
Go, go, go! Nothing is stopping you now!
Don’t forget to do a warming up before your run and a cooling down afterwards (stretch it out)!