You Can Become a Runner
“I think I get addicted to the feelings associated with the end of a long run. I love feeling empty, clean, worn out, and sweat-purged. I love that good ache of the muscles that have done me proud.” – Kristin Armstrong
If you’re a runner, you probably read that quote and completely understood what Kristin Armstrong is talking about. But if you’re not a runner, you may have said, “Hmmm…how do I get that feeling?”
The good news is that you can do it because you can become a runner – even if you’re not one today! You’ve just got to get started!
- Find a Training Plan That Works for You: A training plan is always helpful – especially if you have a goal in mind (such as participating in a 5K or 10K race). Training plans can help you build your stamina and prevent you from developing injuries that can come from overtraining. Runner’s World has a great plan for beginners that can assist you.
- Set Small, Achievable Goals: While the big goal may be to finish a 5K or 10K race, you must set some small and achievable goals that will get you there first. Smaller, attainable goals will show your progress and provide you with motivation along the way. Think about goals that will help you gain consistency in your running and help you increase to your target distance.
- Get a Sneaker Fitting: Yes, you can try running in the sneakers you currently have – but your feet may pay the price. Head to your local running shoe store and see if they can do a fitting for you. Running shoes nowadays are designed for specific foot and body types, and it’s important that you have the right running shoes to keep you injury-free. Runner’s World has a great article that can offer some advice to get you started – and then seek an expert to help you.
- Take Things Slow: You’re probably excited about becoming a runner and eager to get going. But it’s essential that you take things slow. Building up your endurance slowly will help you stick with it – and decrease your chance of getting injured. (Overuse injuries are very common amongst new runners who start out too quickly.)
- Make It a Habit: Making it a habit is vital so that you can achieve your goals. This is where having a plan can help. When you have a plan laid out in front of you, you are more likely to stick with it.
- Find Some Friends: Everything is just a little better when friends are involved – including running. See if you can find a friend who wants to join you or seek out beginners running groups to find some like-minded people.
- Engage Your Brain: Some days are going to be hard, and you’re not going to want to go for a run. It’s on days like this or during a tough run that you need to engage your brain. Develop a mindset that will have you putting on those running shoes or finishing a hard run – and know that you will be better off for it.
- Add-In Some Other Workouts: You may want to add in some additional workouts to build strength and increase your flexibility. These will help your running and your body.
- Be Sure to Stretch: Stretching is important and should be done as part of your training. Healthline has a list of “Essential Stretches for Runners” that can help.
- Have Fun: Most of all – have fun! If it’s not fun – you’re not going to want to do it!
Are you ready to become a runner? Spring is the perfect time to find a plan, lace up those shoes, and give it a try!