Contrary to popular non-runner belief, most runners have not always loved running. Most runners started from scratch, and believe it or not didn’t wake up one day and love running.
The love for the sport has been created over days, months and even years. It takes many runs to build that love, but once the running bug hits, it’s hard to stay away.
Here are some tips to add running to your life:
Start small, and increase gradually
You don’t have to start running every day. In fact, you shouldn’t start running every day. Otherwise, you’ll get burnt out. Like anything, it’s important to start out slow and add mileage.
If you start out too far or fast, you will get injured. Running can humble even the toughest individuals and it’s important to follow a plan that starts slowly and builds mileage or time gradually.
Don’t be afraid to run/walk. Many running plans include run/walk intervals. Why? Because it’s been proven successful!
Go at your own pace and don’t compare yourself to anyone. You are still lapping everyone sitting on the couch.
Proper footwear is essential
It’s important to get fitted for the proper footwear based on your individual gait and running style. There is no right or wrong way to run, however, without the proper footwear for you, you will end up hurt.
Don’t read running shoe reviews because they aren’t considering the shoe for your feet. Your best bet is to go to a local store and get fitted for a pair of running shoes. The professionals at a local running store will be able to tell you what shoe is going to work well for you. Hint: it won’t be based on color and style.
Set a goal
If you’re anything like me, then goals help you focus on staying consistent. Make a goal and go for it. Goals can include:
- A time goal
- A new longest run
- A race
- Beating your neighbor
The important aspect is that your goal is meaningful to you. If the goal is meaningful to you then you are far more likely to stick to it. If it’s meaningful to someone else, it’s much harder to stick to your goal.
Make running fun
Running never has to be a miserable or un-enjoyable experience. You don’t have to run the same route every day. Often, doing the same thing daily is how we get burnt out. Here are some ways to add “fun” to your run:
- Download music
- Download podcasts
- Find a friend or running group. Your local running store can probably help you out and find people of similar abilities for you to run with.
- Change your routes or where you run. Try running everywhere! There is no right or wrong place to run.
Try running in your neighborhood, in parks, in someone else’s neighborhood, or even on a treadmill. You never know what your favorite surface or place to run is unless you experiment!
With any new activity or exercise, give it a month. Give running the benefit of the doubt and if it’s still not fun after a month then try something new. The beauty of running is that it will always be there, and you can come back when you want to.