I picked up running last year when I decided to sign up for the Great Birmingham 10K, I hadn’t done much before that. Okay, I literally did nothing but I’m so glad I started because it’s helped my mental health so much, I haven’t looked back since starting.
I joined a running club in September last year and it’s the best thing I have ever done. I never imagined I’d be running close to 5/6 miles around twice a week and my times for a 5K & 10K keep coming down.
I haven’t been running properly for that long, only 6 months so I’m very much still a newbie in the running world but I feel like I have learnt a lot since starting and picked up a few tips, here’s a few which may help if you want to start.
Get the right gear.
Running is one of the cheapest sports you can do, there’s no monthly payment and you don’t need to break the bank to get some running gear. I wouldn’t buy too much straight away just in case you don’t like running, it’s not for everyone and you don’t want to be stuck with it. Oh and investing in a good pair of trainers is a must, there are specialist running stores that will help you but for my first pair I just went into Sports Direct and tried a few pairs on and went with a pair that felt comfortable. My first pair lasted me a good while, about a year and a half I think.
Run through the hard bits.
It’s hard sometimes but running through the stage where your breathing is all over the place and your legs feel like jelly is the only way you are going to improve. Those times will only make you and your running stronger and once you get past how uncomfortable you feel, you’ll be inclined to push more and then you will see more results.
Get your breathing right.
When I first started my breathing was all over the place, I was getting stitches every time I went for a run. I just didn’t know got to control my breathing but over the last few months with the help of the running club I understand when to breath and hardly ever get stitches.
Breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth is the best way to breath while running but from experience I find breathing through my mouth let’s in more oxygen. I read a lot of articles about Inhale for three steps, exhale for two, inhale for three steps, exhale for two but that didn’t work for me. My advice is to just breathe as much as needed through your mouth and you will soon get into a rhythm.
Find a buddy or group.
This this will be the best thing you will do. I hated running by myself, I could never get my pace right and was always running too fast then running out of breath and had to start walking but running with a group of people who are so supportive make all the difference and running at a comfortable pace means you can also talk so it doesn’t make running too bad or you could try and persuade a friend to go running with you!
Oh & there’s local park runs every Saturday which make for a great starting point, they are weekly timed 5k’s which hundreds of people attend and you will be sure to meet someone going your pace.
Don’t overdo it.
Start off by running for 5 minuites then walking for 1 then just increase your time when running, that’s what I did and now I can continually run for a good hour and a half. Just run at a pace that feels comfortable to you and the just run on the number of days when you can, you don’t need to run every day – around 2 or 3 times a week is ideal. Oh and make sure to give yourself time to ready between each run!
Sometimes it will be exhausting and you hard find it to motivate yourself to go out for a run, just remember fitness doesn’t happen overnight and it will take time. You WILL start to see improvements and your times will start to come down. You are a runner even if you have just started out.
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