Running is a fun workout that tones the legs, boosts endurance, and increases the lung capacity. Although running comes naturally to human beings, there is a right way and a wrong way to do this. If you are new to running and you want to maximize your training, here are some tips to keep in mind:
1. Start Slow
You don’t have to cover a lot of ground especially if you are running for the first time. It’s completely okay with starting at half a mile, a quarter of a mile or even just a few hundred feet. Because running is a progressive workout, you become better at it the more you train. So instead of trying to cover more ground in one session, add a little more distance one training at a time. By starting slow, you are giving your body more time to adjust to the training. By the time the second training day arrives, you’re not too worn out to run.
2. Invest in the Right Gear
The right clothing and footwear are essential to your training. If you are new to running, we recommend investing in a good pair of running shoes. These shoes are not your ordinary sneakers. They provide support, absorb shock, and stabilize the feet for safe running. Wearing a perfectly fitting pair of shoes protects the feet from injuries caused by painful joints, inflamed tendons, or torn muscles! Of course, running shoes are not cheap so make sure you choose the right shoes.
3. Recovery Period
If you think you’d get better at running by training every day, think again. Training every day will only lead to burn out. Most experts recommend running at 3 to 4 days in a week, not daily. Running too often puts excessive stress on the muscles and joints. If you don’t give your body time to recover, your muscles will not be strong enough to withstand the constant abuse. Eventually, the body becomes weaker, more vulnerable to injuries. We suggest resting in between training just to heal from the stresses of running.
4. Stay Hydrated
We cannot say this enough: you need to drink plenty of water every day. This goes especially if you are training. You have to drink at least 8 glasses of water daily, even on non-running days. Drink more if you are working out. Dehydration could lead to muscle cramps and fatigue. Your overall performance will be affected if your body is not getting enough fluids. It will also take more work to complete your training if you are dehydrated because the muscles are too weak to work.
5. Stay on Track
Everybody has to start somewhere. If you are running for the first time and you’re self-conscious because some runners are better than you, don’t be. Some newbie runners get demoralized when they watch seasoned runners perform. The fact is, comparing yourself to others will only affect your performance. Instead of fretting over the performance of others, use that as a motivation to become better! Set your own goals, do your best, and never miss a day of training and slowly, you will become better at running.