Let’s get one thing straight, I wasn’t always a runner, in fact, up until high school I had only joined one cross country team…in sixth grade.
Upon entering high school I had no plans on joining the cross country team. Gym class however had other ideas, as my teacher decided that no class was complete without a 3K warm up. Though most of my friends hated this, I quickly began to love it. I may not have been good, but I never walked, and I took the whole thing embarrassingly serious. About a month into school, I had the teacher encouraging me to go for the cross country team. I was extremely nervous to join a group of experienced runners, who were already weeks into training, but I became convinced enough to join. And that’s where it all began…
Now, going into my second year of consistent running, I feel as if I’ve finally surpassed the beginning stages. Of course this big milestone simply begs for a blog post, so here it is!
Here are 10 tips for beginner runners!
- Don’t do it alone. If it wasn’t for gym class and a team of runners by my side, I don’t know if I would have continued to have the commitment to run. Following this tip may include joining a running group or asking a friend to join you!
- Don’t sweat it! (You don’t know how long I’ve been waiting to use that joke). Anywho, running is a sport where you get to go at your own pace, no pressure. Whether you’re doing it in front of a group of professionals or a group of beginners, no one cares how fast you are, they just care that you’re trying, and if that’s not true, they’re not worth your time! A saying that always gives me a lot of confidence is that “No matter how slow you go, you’re always lapping those on the couch.” Live by that.
- Figure out a time that works best for you. With busy schedules, sometimes it’s hard to fit in time for running, but trust me, you can find at least half an hour in there somewhere! Another problem I faced, was also figuring out when my body was ready to run. This is definitely something that will be personal to everyone. As perfect as a morning run sounds, it doesn’t work for every one. My first time included cramps and no energy to even get through half of my normal route. Also, I found out that I can’t run after meals without cramps.
- Change up the route! Though it may be tempting to run the same roads everyday, you’ll quickly grow bored, making runs seem like a chore. Switching things up is also great for the muscles, this way they’ll be toned for different situations.
- Welcome the hills. I know, the pain will be real, but so will the reward!
- Know what to eat before hand. This site gave me a ton of food options to avoid getting cramps and to run my best. Though I don’t know if they all work, I did give the oatmeal a try and had a 17th place result in my race. My brother also swears by bananas.
- Know how to stretch. Stretching is the best cool down for any run. Search the internet or watch others for proper stretches after running.
- Don’t just run. Trying other exercises will help work different muscles on your body, overall improving your whole performance. Personally, I love watching Blogilates on YouTube for various different workouts.
- REST! Though running each day may seem like the best way to guarantee fast success, I recommend taking at least one day off a week. Also, after I’ve had about a month of consistent training I usually find that if I take a week break, I’ll run even better when I begin again. I’m far from getting this science down, but the moral of this story is that you need to give your body time to recover and repair!
- Be inspired! Everyone has a reason to run: for some it’s about staying healthy, for others it’s about proving to yourself that you can do it, and other people use it to release tension. Whatever reason you run for, remember that this is something that will motivate you through the sun, rain, and snow, so be passionate about it!
So there it is, 10 running tips for beginners! Remember everyone runs differently and for some, not all of these tips will be helpful, but I hope for most of you, these will get you started on the right track! Gosh I love running puns.
Running isn’t a sport for everyone, but by using these tips, maybe you can see if it’s one for you!
Post any tips you have in the comments.
Love ya lots,