With the London Marathon in full steam last weekend, it got a fair few of us thinking that we might just want to head out for a run, make running a more regular part of our routines or even… run a marathon. Well, whatever impact the marathon had on you, here are my top tips on how to get into running when you’re not already a runner!
- Start Light. I don’t want to speak for everyone but chances are you’re not going to put on your trainers and suddenly turn into Mo Farah. The worst thing that you can do is set yourself a ridiculous target, come nowhere near to it and give in at the first hurdle. Make your first run super light, at a distance that you feel is achievable or don’t set yourself a goal, just head out and enjoy the run. Use it to loosen up and get a gauge of how far you can run already.
- Buy New Running Gear. I really do believe that the nicer you feel in your workout outfit, the better you’ll perform. Invest in some new activewear that’s comfortable and makes you feel great- you’ll be more keen to head out and exercise.
- Fuel Up. Running will make your metabolism go through the roof, especially if you’re not used to it already. Stock up on healthy and filling food that won’t have you reaching for those oh-so-convenient naughty snacks. Eating a healthy, balanced diet will do wonders for your running performance.
- Get A Buddy Or Go It Alone. You’ll soon find that you either love running with people or prefer to take to the road alone. I’m a bit of a loner when it comes to my runs, choosing to put my headphones in and zone out, however this isn’t the case for everyone. If you prefer to run with company, why not find a friend who is keen to take up running too? Or, there are plenty of run clubs around including this New Balance Run Club that takes place every week from their Oxford Street flagship store.
- Make A Killer Playlist. Whether you do like running alone or in a group, music can really help to motivate you on your run. Compile all of your fave feel good songs and you really will notice a difference. There’s no better feeling than running along to your fave track!
- Track Your Progress. There is no better feeling than seeing yourself improving. Whether it’s how far you’ve run or changes to your body, mind or attitude, it’s all a result of your hard work paying off. Acknowledge it and be proud of it- you did that!
- Don’t Make It A Chore. You’re aiming for three runs a week but your social life/work is taking over this week and you don’t know if you can make all three. That’s fine! There is nothing worse than feeling like you have to go for a run. It should be enjoyable rather than feeling like another errand.
- Do A Fun Run. Even though I come from a track and field background (I competed in sprints, long jump and triple jump), I honestly used to hate the idea of a fun run. That was until I actually did one! The atmosphere is amazing and if you get a good group of you running together you can make a day of it. They really do make running fun.
- Set A Goal. Once you’ve gotten into the swing of things, it’s always nice to set a goal. It will help keep you focused with something to aim for. It can be as big or little as you like, from running a marathon/half marathon, to smashing a time for 5km. Once you’ve reached one goal, reward yourself and then set another. Having targets really does give you more of a reason to get out and run.