Cardiovascular exercise like running is a healthy way to lose weight, stay in shape, and keep your body in a healthy state. To get the most out of your running routine from the first time on take into account these 9 tips for beginners to have a fruitful experience starting from your first run on.
Buy running clothes that you are going to feel comfortable and confident in. Whether running at the gym or in a public place it’s important that you feel at ease during your running exercise to avoid feeling embarrassed and uncomfortable during your routine. Subsequently, even the t-shirt you wear can drastically effect your exercise. During the cold months, make sure to wear head wear that covers your ears. Dressing in layers and socks are also a big especially important in the cold months, when winter hits look for socks that are rated to handle temperatures you’re going to experience during your runs. When exercising during hot months, it’s also okay to bring a most hand towel or bandana that you can use to dampen your forehead.
Put effort into finding the right shoes to run in since running related injuries are largely related to footwear. Go to a store where there are people who can analyze your feet and suggest the best running shoe to fit your individual needs. Getting the wrong shoes will do damage to your knees, legs, and back so make sure to invest in a pair that will benefit you all the way through your running exercises. The best time to try on shoes is in the afternoon, since later in the day your feet will actually become larger than in the morning when you wake up. Always tie your laces in a way that they won’t come undone while you’re on the go, tripping or having to stop and give them a tie will only slow you down.
3. Motivating Yourself:
For those who have trouble making yourself get up and go, trying to find a running partner is never a bad idea. If there’s a local club or running group, don’t be afraid to join, it’s a lot harder to lose motivation when there are other individuals who share the same activity as you. Challenge yourself when you feel prepared, entering a race or a small competition locally is a great way to be around others that also run and see how your exercise is paying off. Don’t be too hard on yourself, there will be days that are rough and you’re not into it but even a short run just to stay active and keep your body going it more beneficial than skipping one altogether.
4. Eating and Hydration Habits:
There are several types of food that come highly recommended for supplying pre-workout nutritional value. Make sure to avoid foods that are overly spicy before running because they won’t sit well once you start going. Eat food periodically during any long run, approximately every hour should do well for keeping your body nutritionally stable. Bring plenty of fluids, preferably Gatorade to recharge your electrolyte or plain old water will suit you the best. When preparing water for you run, try to freeze half the bottle prior to setting out and just before you leave top it off with fresh cool water. To help your body recharge and establish a healthy chemical balance after running the best time is to eat within an hour of ending your exercise.
5. Injury prevention:
It’s highly important to pay attention to your body as your run. Maintaining proper form is going to be a detrimental part of avoiding injuring yourself. Chafing is known to occur at times in sensitive areas of the body where rubbing occurs, like between the legs, under the arms or in your shoes – apply cream, lubricant, or oil in spots where you know your body chafes to prevent it from happening. Avoid icing for longer than 20 minutes and hot tubes altogether after a run, hot tubs will inflame your joints more rather than relax them. Cut your toenails to a healthy length so they don’t cut your other toes or jam in your shoes. Never run hard two days in a row or your body will get overly fatigued.
Always run on the sidewalk. If there is no sidewalk and there’s no other choice but to run in the bike lane, be aware of traffic and cyclists that are also trying to use the road. Run against traffic, meaning be on the side of the road where you can see the cars passing by approaching from the front and never assume that a driver sees you on the road. Pedestrians have the right of way but that doesn’t mean that a driver can’t be distracted and the high speeds and limited maneuvering capabilities of a motor vehicle decrease the chance of them being able to avoid hitting you in a rush instance. Always carry an identification card on you in case of an emergency, it’s hard to predict what will happen to you and if you need medical attention or to be identified, having your government issued license or state I.D. will help strangers get in contact with your loved ones.
Dress as if it’s a few degrees warmer out than it actually is, your body will warm up during a run and you don’t want to overheat. Always wear sunscreen, as well as protective eye and head wear. The sun reflects hard off the pavement and even in the winter when it’s colder out their is no exception to the potential harm the sun’s rays can do to your skin. Always adjust clothing according to the weather, wearing clothing rated properly to the temperatures are going to benefit you in the long run.
Start off slow and begin with only what you can handle, there is no benefit in overworking your body too fast. Have realistic aspirations and set goals that you can achieve in a manageable time frame. Keep track of your progress, keeping a journal is a great way to help stay motivated and see improvement both in your health and routine. Never let your run become monotonous, it’s okay to change the route you take as you run, it will help to see new sights as you exercise. Don’t get down on yourself for taking breaks to walk in between spurts of running. It’s okay, to cool it down sometimes, pace yourself, don’t feel ashamed for taking a walk or slower gate – worry about speed only after you build up endurance.
Remember your manners when you’re out there running. When in groups, avoid loud clothing and being obnoxious. There are other runners trying to enjoy themselves as well, remember you share many of the places you frequent with others. Don’t litter, and avoid making yourself a distraction, nobody will appreciate it if you keep them from enjoying their exercises. Even when you’re excited about your routine, avoid going overboard with friends and family – just because you’re an avid runner doesn’t mean that’s all they want to hear about all day and night long. It’s okay to be proud of yourself but don’t become obsesses to the point you drive others away.