Are you starting on a new regimen, or you’re just planning to get to it to improve fitness? Before going for your first stride, it is important to understand that there is more to running for fitness than just getting your feet on quick motion. To get the most out of running, here are five extremely important running tips for beginners, as advised by experts.
1. Get started with short intervals
The beginning should be well calculated. No rush, no fuss, easy from the beginning. Your body will need some time to adapt from its rigid form; therefore, your good progress could well be determined by how well you start. Break your runs into some short intervals, walking in between for recovery. Lengthen these intervals as time goes by and minimize the walks. For example, you can start by alternating 2 to 3 minutes of running with 2 minutes of walking. Increase the intervals by a minute until you can pull some reasonable distance freely.
2. Do not run fast from the start
Again, your body needs time to get used to the new physical demands of running. Avoid running fast when you’re starting to avoid overexertion, frustration, or even injuries. Start moderately, say at a pace you can comfortably hold a conversation with your running partner. Let your body slowly adapt to running instead of pushing it too hard.
3. Give your body time to recover
Your first day out on the tracks will be successful if you start as advised, but be prepared for the aftermath. You will experience muscle pain around your thighs and feet, but it is nothing to worry about. You shouldn’t give up at this point, though, but allow it a day to rest before going for the next run. Be careful not to exceed the rest, as you might find yourself having to start all over again.
4. Look for the ideal running surface
You will find plenty of surfaces around your pathways, playing fields, and even roads, but do they all offer the ideal running surfaces? The answer is no. Pavements are perfect for faster running as they are smooth, with little danger of hurting your ankle. However, pavements do not cushion your steps and will only favor experienced, light runners.
On the other hand, while a forest track is the best for cushioning, the risk of injury is higher due to rocks, bumps, and roots. If you can afford a treadmill, it would be a good place to start, but make sure you are well acquainted with adjusting the belt speed.
Doing different types of physical activities is good for the heart. It reduces boredom, and heals the stress from doing some demanding activities. While the main focus is on running for fitness, adding a little spice won’t hurt. Learn some minor workouts like stretching, jogging, walking, stair-climbing, jumping, cycling, and swimming, among many other activities. That way, you’ll find more health benefits due to getting more parts of the body fitter.
Fitness should be forever, but it does not come entirely through running and working out. Ensure you eat the right foods before running, and always keep yourself hydrated. Have a running schedule that you can follow religiously, for example, if you plan to be running at 6 am every morning, let it remain so.