Some of you have already started a running program and are making progress. You may have reached some first milestones finishing your first mile without walking, running for 20 minutes or even completed a race or more.

Some of you may also have been experiencing some difficulties Maybe you have been running regularly but not seeing many improvements; tough getting past that first mile or still walking to finish my workouts.

Even though we may not be “elite runners” it is easy to forget about some of the basics once you start getting into a program. We are here with some helpful reminders.

Remember…

It isn’t a race.
Sure you may be taking part in races, but here are a couple of items to remember. You have nobody to beat but yourself; don’t go out of the gate keeping up with faster people. Run your run. If you are just starting to run, take it slow. Getting better is not an overnight success. Starting too fast you risk injury, disappointment and fewer results.

It’s OK to walk.
I know of marathon runners, who after completing several marathons, still continue to walk now and then during a race. Walking will help you increase your distance and keeps your body working, while you take a breather before you continue your run. Don’t be afraid to take a walk break. It will do more good for you than you think.

Listen to your body.
Your body has built-in mechanisms to help let you know that you are tired or possibly injured. Learn to listen to your body and react to what your body tells you. Sometimes that may mean walking, some times it may mean shorten your distance for that day, and sometimes it may tell you to take the day off.

Don’t forget to warm-up and cool down.
Being pressed for time is probably the biggest reason most people “forget” to warm-up or cool down. Regardless of how far or fast you are going to run, warming up and cooling down helps your body prevent injuries and recover properly. Not only remember to warm-up and cool down, but do it the right way.

Drink plenty of water.
Make sure you are properly hydrated before you run so that you don’t dehydrate during your run. Even during winter months and colder weather, hydration is important. Drink before you are thirsty to be certain you are hydrating properly.

Take recovery days.
Even though you are pushing to run faster, farther or make your first mile, remember to take days off. Not only does your muscles need to recover, so do you mentally. For most runners, running 3 days a week is enough (unless you are looking at marathon training). If you must, do another form of exercise during your non-running days.

You can do it.
The last thing to remember is that most of us can do more than we think we can. Give yourself motivation, come up with a mantra, or seek a person to help you push yourself. Keep thinking positive and you will achieve your goals.


 



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