Running for beginners

If you got here to my blog, it’s likely that you will start running soon or have already started.  You probably want to start an adventure with a new sport and in your head, there are many questions and thoughts on running. Too many guides give you very general advice – like, run 3 times a week, cross jogging, etc. I would like to share with you my personal reflections and some pieces of advice on what not to do when you start running.

Here are 5 tips that are good for every beginner runner:

1) Before you start running, consider whether it is not too early. Might look as a strange advice in this type of a guide. However, if you have been physically inactive for the past few years, you’re overweight, have health problems (such as high blood pressure), then consider another type of sports to start with something less burdensome. If it is warm outside, go biking.  Maybe Nordic walking? Or maybe you like swimming and it is high time to start with a visit to the pool? The point is that running is a very tiring sport and starting from a complete beginner … will be hard. It is worth to build (for a month or two) the foundations of the form that will make the first runs not that tiring.

2) Take care of the technique – run to step on your instep. The moment you start running is a good time to get acquainted with the good running technique. I have recently read and can definitely reccomend “Natural Running” by Danny Abshire and Brian Metzler. And if you think that it’s too early to visit the bookstore just watch some tutorials on running on YouTube. And the most important is to start running from the instep.

3) Do not rush with buying the running equipment. Based on some guides you can get the impression that you should spend at least 500 pounds on running shoes, running clothing (shirts, shorts, sweatshirts, socks), heart rate monitor, GPS receiver … at once – come on, you just start running! Simple running shoes (I started running wearing Adidas shoes for 50 quid) are enough. It is only after some time, when you find that running is an activity that makes you happy, slowly upgrade your wardrobe with clothing and accessories.

4) Do not run to maximum on every workout. Many beginner runners in each workout try to improve as much as possible – they are constantly checking if they are able to run for example 400 meters faster than the last time. This way it’s easier to get injured than to catch the condition!

5) Run slowly and you will run longer and further. Run calm and reduce the risk of injury. Slow running from the beginning is enough to build a good form. If you see other runners passing you by easily, and you have to speed up to keep up with them … calm down, let them go, you’ll still have time to race.