How to Start a Running Routine
Having a fitness routine of some kind is important. We all know this. Finding ways to keep it fresh, and a little challenging can be, well, challenging. Running is a great workout to add into your routine if it’s not already because you can slowly over time increase the duration, intensity and difficulty with simple adjustments. It is also an exercise you can do indoors and outdoors depending on the weather which means no excuses not to get it done!
If you have never run before it is important to work your way into it. Don’t sign up for a marathon tomorrow if you have not been consistently training on it for a while. Instead, use our tips so you can gradually work up to whatever goals you have in mind.
Before you start any type of intensive workout routine it is important to visit your doctor first to get clearance. Nothing is worse than aggravating a problem you didn’t know you had and being kept out of the game for long periods of time recovering.
Once you are cleared for activity, it is important you invest in good equipment. That means proper running shoes (we suggest seeing a specialist for fit) and clothes. Investing in the proper gear will not only keep you safe and help you to avoid injury but will also keep you comfortable and cool while working up a sweat.
Next, consider any necessary warm-ups and cool-downs you will need. Carve out 5-10 minutes to properly do both. During this time you will want to stretch and gradually work up (or down) your heart rate.
If you are new to running (you most likely are because you are reading this) make sure to take it slow and build up your endurance. You can start with one of running followed by one minute of walking to start and then slowly increase the length of the running intervals as you get more seasoned. Remember to keep it manageable so you will stick with it!
As you are running make sure you practice good form so you not only get the most bang for your buck but don’t get sidelined by injury. Stand straight and keep you shoulders level, but relaxed. You will also want to monitor your footstrike (the way your foot hits the pavement or treadmill) and adjust as needed.
Nutrition and Hydration
Unsurprisingly what you eat and drink before, during and after can have a profound affect on your workout. Make sure you stay hydrated—especially if you are into any long distant running. Consider drinking 16 ounces of water before you go on a long run and make sure you figure out a way that works for you to keep fluids readily handy as you go along.
Don’t go crazy “carb-loading” before and after a run. Before you head out for your workout be sure to eat something- carbs are recommended but not that heaping plate of spaghetti you often hear about. Keep your pre-meal light but packed with beneficial nutrients for energy. After your run you are going to want to replenish your body so a 3 to 1 ration of carbs and protein is the way to go.
Choose Your Run
There are many ways and styles to go about getting a run in so take some time to investigate and choose the best option(s) for you.
Racing- 5K, 10K, Half Marathon, Marathon, Ultramarathon