Running is a brilliant form of cardio and weight bearing exercise, meaning it both benefits your heart and strengthens bones helping prevent osteoporosis in the future. All you need is a pair of trainers (and maybe a sports bra!) and you’re on your way. I am so excited that some of my best friends, and my sister-in-law are taking up running. It makes me so happy to receive a text asking for advice from them, or them asking whether I’ll do a race with them. I am thrilled to be doing a Race for Life Pretty Muddy race with my friend Jo this summer.
I have definitely not always been a runner, and it terrified me to think how far I had to go to be able to run 26.2 miles (for those that are new to the blog- I signed up to run my first marathon without being able to run a mile in 2011!) My mum recently sent me this photo from one of my second ever half marathon – the Water for Life half. It was a trail half (not that I knew there was a difference at the time), I finished in 2.17 and was so so proud of myself.
I know that lots of people are scared to start, either from bad memories of running at school or just a fear of not being able to do it. Remember that everyone had to start somewhere! Follow these tips and you’ll be running like a pro in no time.
- Start small- set yourself a realistic target such as running for 2mins then walking for 1min, running to the end of your street or doing one lap of your local park. You’ll be surprised how quickly you will build your endurance and confidence.
- Try not to set off too fast – setting off at an unsustainable pace means you’ll quickly burn out. Start slowly and you can always pick up the pace. My first run I legged it out of the door, and only made it to the end of my street before having to catch my breath whilst pretending to stretch!
- Sign up to a race- it might sound scary but having something to work towards is really motivational. Race for Life’s 5K, Pretty Muddy and 10K events are the perfect races for beginners. Free weekly parkrun’s in your local area are also a brilliant place to start.
- Find a training plan that will build up from zero to 5K. Kiqplan have developed an app to take you from no running experience to the finish line of a Race for Life 5K (or 10K). Starting with only 1 min running intervals, it is doable for everyone. They even have workouts to complete on the days that you’re not running- perfect for taking to the gym or doing in your sitting room. It sends reminders to you on your phone and can sync up with your running device, whether that’s a Nike+, Garmin, RunKeeper or Fitbit! You can track your sleep, calories and steps in the app too. The app is £4.99 however 20% of this goes directly to Cancer Research UK, so you’re supporting a great cause and getting fit!
- Rope some friends in to start running with you, having someone to chat with, run alongside and generally keep you accountable makes it more fun!
- Add in some cross training such as yoga, weights, circuits or pilates. These will compliment your running, as well as improving your fitness and strength more quickly.
- Remember that running isn’t easy, it is meant to challenge you, however as your fitness improves, it will feel easier. Keep at it, I promise it’s worth it!
This post is sponsored by Kiqplan apps. All advice is my own from personal experience!!