Wise song title from Mr Springsteen!
Running is an exercise I believe everybody and anybody can do. I hear many people say they can’t run but I think what they really mean is that they won’t run. We are all born with the ability to run (after learning how to crawl and walk of course!)…
Yes, it won’t be easy at the start. In fact, don’t even contemplate just running a casual 5km on your first run. You’ll need to start by walking for part (or even a lot) of it. Most beginners scare themselves off running completely by going too hard, too fast when they start. Don’t do this.
The key is to make it enjoyable. Run at a pace that suits you. If you aren’t going at Paula Radcliffe pace, who cares?! You are outside, doing exercise and becoming healthier. Once you nail that, progress will come naturally.
So my top tips for beginner runners (or those returning after a break) are:
- Take it slow – go at your own pace, and don’t be afraid of walking if you need to – 1 minute walking/1 minute running is a great start
- Make running enjoyable – run somewhere off-road and surrounded by nature if possible – the last thing you need to worry about is traffic-ridden roads!
- Accept that you will not make progress every time you run – everyone has bad runs, I still don’t understand why some days I am unstoppable and others I start flopping in the first mile. Just remember those are the runs when the real difference to your body and fitness begins…
- Download a running app – I couldn’t run without my Nike Running app now – it helps you to pace yourself and it’s great to keep a record of your runs to look back on and feel proud about 🙂
- Join a running club – not for everyone but running clubs can be great if you don’t enjoy running alone or are lacking motivation to keep going. Also having others around can be a great distraction rather than focusing on any aches along the way!
- And finally, remember this…