We’re not all professional runners, and novices are often surprised of how hard running is, and many just don’t know the proper way to engage in this popular and very fulfilling sport. Many new runners are often unprepared mentally and physically for the demands they put on their bodies and the time investment needed to run properly, and benefit from it. The following tips are for beginner runners, but advanced runners might even learn something!
- Make a Plan: Many people can’t lace up their shoes and hit the pavement. Set a plan to ease into running. Start out with a run/walk interval five times a week for 30 minutes to help condition and prepare your body. Making a plan is a great way to ease into the sport, and eventually excel in it.
- Get Geared Up: Proper running shoes, heart rate monitors, socks, shorts, tops and even hydration packs are all basic running gear that are created to help make runs easier and also keep you and your body safe during this high endurance activity. Be sure to get properly fitted for running shoes, as all feet are different, and a running store can help ensure you’re getting support where it really counts. Heart rate monitors should also be a must-buy to help see how hard you’re working, and measure your success.
- Never Skip a Warm Up: Before engaging in a run, it’s crucial to give your muscles a much needed and beneficial dynamic stretch to prevent injuries. A five-minute walk is an excellent way to warm up your muscles to avoid tightening muscles while running. Post stretches and cool downs are also just as important. Your body will thank you!
- Fuel Up and Hydrate: Eating complex carbs pre-workout is a great way to fuel your body for a run. Also, eating a 4:1 ratio of carbs to protein post-run is an excellent way to feed tired muscles and help them rebuild quickly. A glass of chocolate milk as a post workout drink is a great choice as it falls into the 4:1 ratio. Doing this can help prevent muscle fatigue. It’s also important to drink water after a run to help replenish the water lost during a run.
Running can be fun, rewarding, but it’s also a high intensity sport that takes some getting used to. If you’ve wanted to run, but just aren’t prepared, the following tips are a great starting point.