Wanna’ get into running and pound the pavement without goin’ red in the face, gasping for breath and pourin’ with sweat? We got you!
Beginner or sprinter, now is the ideal time to boost your summer bod, ditch the excuses and lace up in your runners and brand new kit. It gets you out of the house for some fresh air, which is just as important for stress relief as building up your cardiovascular health. Pushin’ yourself and de-stressing after a long day with a run helps maintain healthy bones, muscles, the heart and lungs. It even boosts your mood and reduces anxiety and loneliness. Sound good? We think so too!
So, what’s hard about running? You just lace up and go right? Wrong. There is SO much more to running than just putting one foot in front of the other over and over again. We’ve all seen (or been) that guy at 6am on a Sunday morning, keeling over a stitch after the first mile screamin’ “Why am I awake at this time? Why?!”, inside.
To avoid this feelin’ we’ve put together some tips to live by, which should help you hit that 5K. Lycra at the ready…
Don’t Skip the Warm-Up
Roll. It. Out. The first few minutes of a run always feel challenging. This is down to your muscles going from inactive to active. Stay prepped by loosening up your muscles, work from head to toe with dynamic movements – when we say warm-up, we don’t mean a few half-hearted hamstring stretches. Aim for a warm-up that gets your heart poundin’ and starts to make you sweat. Try high-knees, star jumps and walking lunges. And don’t forget about your calves and lower back, get touchin’ them toes!
Building Distance, Slowly.
The easiest way to get into running is to up your distance bit by bit. Start with however far you can manage, even if it’s only five minutes of exercise, and add no more than 10% each week. A combo of running and walking will be needed so don’t forget to pace yourself and don’t sweat over speed, this will improve naturally as your body gets used to running.
Find a Running Buddy
Yes dogs count. Running is so much more fun with someone else, be it a bestie or your sidekick. Find a friend who is ditching the treadmill and plan to run together at least once a week at your local park. Running with a mate can distract you from how far you have left to run and leave you determined to reach that finish line – with someone to celebrate with at the end! Just don’t miss the no-music memo when it comes to teaming up with a running buddy. If you have a dog, there is no better company. Make sure you cop a running harness to go around your waist so that your hands are left free.
Switch It Up
Determined to rack up the miles? There’s nothing more inspiring than running in your surroundings. Leave the tech at home and simply enjoy putting one foot in front of the other. While running in next level locations may not be possible during the working week, it’s worth the trip to get out of your usual city road route. Running outside uplifts your mood more than running on a treadmill, a run along the beach or through the woods will refresh both your mind and soul and give you the country escape you’ve been looking for.
Running in a city brings its own hurdles compared to the countryside. The streets are all about embracing your urban environment, getting to know the city and working up a sweat. Tackling your city miles is easy to fit in around your schedule, they show you all the cool short cuts, all while upping your confidence with running intervals as you’ll come across lots of people, buildings and traffic. Sprint tip: remember to land properly and roll your feet when you run the streets or add in a sole support in your sneakers.
Track or Field?
Wondering what kind of surface, you should be running on? It all depends on the type of workout you wanna’ boss. A mix of different surfaces will bring flexibility to your muscles.
- Pavements – Ideal for fast running and light runners, there’s little danger of turning your ankle running on the streets.
- Parks & Woods – These terrains are soft, givin’ you maximum cushioning. Watch out for tree roots and rocks!
- Beaches – A sandy surface trains your muscles and makes you lift your feet.
- The Treadmill – Allows you to train all year round with good cushioning. Remember to alter your form as the belt moves under your feet.
Rest ‘n’ Recovery
Recovery is just as important as your run if not more important! The recovery stage lets your body to build and grow which is what helps you build physical and mental strength to go the distance on your next run. Think about running 3/4 days out of 7, max, and ALWAYS remember to stretch. On your off days, rest or do some cross training or swimming to build muscle in your core and legs, so you’re not worrying about those knees!
Whether you’re just starting out or a seasoned runner, take advantage of the good weather, get set and go! What you waitin’ for?