It is always amusing that the words ‘fun’ and ‘run’ are combined so often when promoters are advertising their next event. To many, especially those who are deconditioned or new to physical activity, there is not much fun in the idea of running or training.
Of course if we can sift through the marketing spin and get to the core of what is important, running, walking or moving actively in any way is a bonus to the body and the mind and should be encouraged.
What many struggle with is motivation. It is here that the organisation of events from charity runs/walks through to triathlons and bike rides, right up to the ‘Tough Mudder’ and ironman slogfests are a bonus.
There are many ways to train and work up to undertaking such events and most involve joining others be they family, friends or club mates in the effort to reach a goal and participate.
The Active Running and Sports website is a good starting point for those who are keen to get into some running training.
1. Get Fitted: Pay a visit to your local independent running store. Often these smaller stores have more knowledgeable staff than the big box retails stores. Many provide gait analysis which reveals your foot strike pattern. Knowing this will help determine the best shoe for your foot type. Don't skimp on your shoes. Be prepared to pay what is required for a good pair of running shoes.
2. Get Technical: Invest a little in some technical fabric running shorts, tops, and socks. Technical fabric can be made of a variety of fibers including natural (bamboo, smartwool) and synthetic (polyester, nylon, Lyrca) materials. Avoid 100 percent cotton. It tends to retain sweat causing chaffing, irritation, and even blisters.
3. Get a Group: Motivation, inspiration, accountability, and commitment increase dramatically when you're a part of a running group or at least have a running buddy. Everyone experiences times when they don't want to run, but if you know you have buddies counting on you, it can make all the difference when it comes to rolling over and getting out of bed.
4. Get a Plan: Just getting out the door and running often does not work for many people, especially if you've been sedentary or away from exercise for any period of time. Find a beginning running plan to follow. There are beginning running programs online or you can contact your local running store, running club, or running coaches in the area. One of the most effective ways to begin is with a run/walk method.
5. Get Acclimated: Whenever you begin new exercise your body's fitness level will actually dip a little while you acclimate to the new demands you're putting on your body. This is when most new runners give up. Understand before you take up running that it takes your body about four to six weeks to acclimate to the new demands. Start slowly - many new runners experience shin splints, pulled calf muscles, cramping or sore hips from going out too fast or from doing too much too soon.
Reference website: http://www.active.com/running/articles/10-tips-for-beginning-runners
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