A Wife Loved Like The Church

5 Quick Tips for Beginning Runners

Posted on: August 10, 2012

The first step in becoming a runner is to run. That might be simplifying things, but it’s true. You’ll never be a runner if you don’t run.

Running is a daunting task at times. It’s hard, it’s tiring, and can be very lonely. But I’m going to share some quick tips to get you started.

1. Set a goal – Every race I’ve run has a goal. It could be to finish. It could be to set a record. It could be to just have fun. Having a goal in running let’s you know how you’re doing while training. Without a goal, you don’t have clear direction. And without direction chances are good you’ll stop running.

2. Set realistic goals – I’d love to get on a course and run a 10K in under 45 minutes today. That averages an 7min/mil. Doable, perhaps. But since my current average is 9min/mil, it’s not that realistic. If you’ve never run, or it’s been a long time, having realistic goals allows you to meet your bar and feel accomplished. Set a goal to run a 5K in 3 or 4 months, not next month.

3. Buddy system – Running is great for solitude. I can hit the streets and not talk to anyone, just be alone. But that can get really boring. If you are just starting off running, having a running buddy can make the difference between success and failure. A friend helps push you, motivate you and hold you accountable. You can be certain, I would not be running at 6am if I didn’t have someone depending on me running with them.

Don’t have friends who run? Do a search for running groups in your area, or check out Meetup. Finding established clubs are safer options for meeting a new running buddy.

4. Get the gear – If you have never run before, you need to make sure you have shoes, shorts, top and sports bra {for the ladies}. It’s going to make things much harder if you don’t have what you need to get started.

5. Don’t get the gear – Chances are good, that you probably already have the essential gear you need to start running. Now, I speak for myself when I say – don’t buy new shoes/shorts/top/bra thinking this will motivate you to run. Personally, for me it never did. If you already have what you need to run, start running. Perhaps getting new shoes/clothes can be a reward for hitting your goal. Run a 5K, get new shoes.

Don’t let yourself be discouraged before you ever start. Set a goal, find a friend and start running.

“The miracle isn’t that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start.” -John Bingham

Next week, I’m going to be addressing how to set goals using running programs – and how to find a program that’s right for you.

*Disclaimer: All tactics/tips are my own personal opinions and not medically backed. Please seek medical advice before starting any running program.

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4 Responses to "5 Quick Tips for Beginning Runners"

I like the Bingham quote! Another good one is “Remember, you’re lapping everybody sitting on the couch!” but I don’t know who said it. A lot of cities have a Road Runner’s club – I joined when I lived in NYC and it was great!

Yay for a running series from a mom who knows! Coming from a place where I used to have 10 mi Mondays it’s been really difficult to get my brain around how to start from scratch. I think #1 is the BEST, just start. I would add start slowly. A friend of mine linked to this on her blog, thought it might be helpful to share here.

http://doctormama.blogspot.com/2006/05/listen-up-maggots.html

Katie – Such a good point! And I will be addressing the whole speed/distance thing with my next post on setting goals.

Just what I needed go read. Thank you precious daughter.

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