Three steps to running success
To run is to swiftly place one foot in front of the other so that both feet leave the ground during each stride. You can probably already do that, at least with enough skill to get around a baseball diamond, or to catch a toddler trotting toward an unguarded staircase. What you may not now be able to do, however, is run a long enough distance, or run frequently enough for your own liking.
Anyone can be a runner. Whether you run slowly, quickly, or only on sunny Wednesdays, you are a runner.
There are many reasons to start running. Since you are reading this article, you probably have a few reasons of your own. Running is a great way to increase cardiovascular fitness, muscle tone, and bone density. It burns calories, helps you lose weight, and you can run just about anywhere. Follow the three steps to running success.
Step 1: Get ready! Before you lace up your shoes and hit the roads, do a little preparation. If you are new to exercise, or if you have a medical condition, talk to your doctor before you begin. Once you have received the go ahead, set a specific, realistic and measurable goal for yourself. Your goal may be, for example, to follow a specific run program three times per week, or to complete a 5-kilometer run in the spring.
Next, look at your shoes. If the soles are worn thin, or you vaguely remember buying them a few years ago, it is definitely time for a new pair. If you have worn your shoes for more than six months, a new pair is recommended. A running specific shoe store can offer you advice on which shoe is best for you. The running tights and flashy reflective running tops are nice to have, but not necessary to start running.
Step 2: Follow a plan. Create a personal running schedule. Include when and where you will run, and for how long. Use your judgment to keep safe while running. For example, if you run at night, wear bright clothing and run with a friend.
When it comes to running, it pays off to be the tortoise and take it slow. Start with a walk to warm up. Next, run for 30 seconds to a minute. Make sure that you are able to keep up a conversation while you run. Walk briskly for two to four minutes and repeat three to six times. Walk again at the end to cool down. Slowly increase the time spent running each week or at your own pace. Remember to have fun! Be sure to keep hydrated, and to listen to your body. If you feel abnormally tired, or if you are sore, take a break. It’s okay to take a rest day, even if it’s not planned. UrbanEndo Runners in Garrison Crossing offers Learn to Run programs, as well as running programs for intermediate and advanced runners.
Step 3: Keep running! Soon enough you will be comfortable running 20 minutes or more on a regular basis. Now is an important time to keep motivated to keep running. Change your running route regularly to keep your runs exciting. Keep motivated by setting goals, running with a partner, training for a race, or joining a running club. The Vedder Running Club welcomes runners and walkers of all abilities.
Ascend Fitness Coaching is participating in the Run for the Cure on Sunday, October 2 in Abbotsford. For more information on training for the Run for the Cure, or to join the Ascend Fitness team, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tanja Shaw is a Kinesiologist and personal trainer, specializing in weight loss, group fitness, pre and postnatal fitness, and health and wellness programs. She owns Ascend Fitness Coaching, which offers Boot Camps, mom and baby fitness classes and personal training in the Chilliwack area. Reach her at email@example.com.