Running Guide for Beginners

  1. Run-Walk Intervals 

It is intimidating to run for one to three miles straight. Do not let it intimidate you. If you are a beginner, you can begin with run-walk intervals. Run walks can help you get used to running. Run walks do not even overtax your body, so they are less likely to cause injury. Injuries can make you quit running. If you do not get injured, you are more likely to continue running. 

Running works on the cardiovascular system. It also places stress on the muscles, bones, and joints. You can get good cardio fitness from non-running activities, such as spinning, elliptical, etc. It is, however, better to take walk breaks from running. The walk breaks reduce the stress on the musculoskeletal system. Do not overstress your musculoskeletal system. The walk breaks can even help reduce the risk of injuries, such as the runner’s knee, IT band syndrome, shin splints, and more. It is easy to continue running if you are injury-free. 

Run walking can help you stay energized while running. Running is hard. However, you do not want to spend too much effort running every time you run. You can use walk breaks to control your pace and breathing to avoid struggling at the end of your run. 

It is simple to do run-walk intervals. You can use an app on your smartphone to monitor your time. You can, therefore, run for 20 to 30 minutes and walk for another 20 to 30 minutes. You can set it up as slow and fast intervals on your app. You can use your fitness level to determine the length of your walk intervals and run intervals. 

If you are running for the first time, you can start with a 30 to 60 second run and 1 minute walk. 

If you have been exercising regularly, you can start with 2 to 4 minutes of run intervals and 1 minute of walk intervals. 

You can increase your run intervals and shorten your walk intervals after every few weeks. You can do this until you can run continuously. 

  1. Run Easy Miles 

You do not have to use your full effort while running. If you can run at a moderate intensity, you are more likely to enjoy running. You will, however, use more effort to run than when you are walking. If you can talk normally while running, you are running at a moderate intensity. Once you finish running, you want to feel like you can still run for a few more minutes. 

You also need to consider the volume of the training and the frequency of the runs. You can begin with 20 to 30 minutes of run-walk intervals and run three times every week. Do not try to run every day. Running easy miles can make running more enjoyable. Ensure that your running shoes are comfortable with orthotic insoles, this will enable you to run to your best ability.

  1. Eat Right 

You may want to run to lose weight. Do not, however, run before eating anything. You will need the energy to run. The body gets energy from both fat and carbohydrates. If you do not eat before you run, you will have low blood sugar. Therefore, you are more likely to feel sluggish and even light-headed as you run. It is much better to eat something before you run. 

Do not, however, eat too much before running. If you eat too much, it can upset your stomach as you run. It is best to eat small snacks 60 to 90 minutes before running. You can eat to get the energy your body needs for your run. 

It is also essential to eat an hour after you complete your run. Your body burns carbohydrates while you are running. You will, therefore, need to replenish your carbohydrate stores. Eating after running can help you replenish the carbohydrate stores and prepare the body for the next run. 

It is also important to consume enough protein. This is because the muscles need protein to repair. In addition, if you eat after your run, you can keep your appetite in check. 

It is best to take a small snack once you complete your run. You must, however, eat nutritious foods like vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Remember to eat lean protein to help you recover. 

Once you begin your run, do not eat while you are running. If you want to run for under 75 to 90 minutes, you may not need sports nutrition foods, such as gels. Your muscles use glycogen to fuel your run for under 90 minutes. It is, therefore, better to eat nutritious foods with complex carbohydrates. 

  1. Keep a Training Log

It is important to have someone keep you accountable. It is, however, much better to keep yourself accountable. 

You can use a training log to keep track of your progress. If you are a new runner, you need to keep a training log. It can help you know what you have achieved. If you can see progress after a few weeks, it can motivate you to push yourself to achieve even more. 

In fact, there are apps, such as Runkeeper, which you can use to keep track of your progress. You can, therefore, use the app to track your runs. 

Once you complete your run, compare it to your previous run. The app also has a notes functionality. You can the notes functionality to write down notes. You can even write how you felt after your run. The app also adds your monthly mileage. You will, therefore, see visible progress, especially if you are running more and more. 

  1. Build Your Foundation First

It is better to build your foundation before you tackle races, especially long-distance running. You have to run or run-walk for six or more months before you start training for a half marathon or even marathon. You will still tackle races in the future. It is, however, better to run for a few months to help your musculoskeletal system to adapt to the physiological demands of running. Wear comfortable shapewear with back support when running to avoid back injuries.

You can, therefore, spend a few months running to strengthen your joints and muscles, develop your running routine, and build your aerobic base. This reduces your risk of getting injured in the future.

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