Running is not an easy feat, even for someone, like myself, who runs competitively. As someone who has run almost every day for the past 11 years, I have learned a few tips to making your run more enjoyable and effective and would love to share them.
- Make the commitment to run: Committing to run a certain distance or amount of time regularly can be terrifying, yet it is a great way to stay consistent with your runs. For added improvement it is helpful to keep a written schedule for your runs.
- Start small: You need to ease your self into running. Your body will be very sore after running. The key to not scaring your self away is to start small with your running goals. Run one lap, then the next week run two laps on a track or in your neighborhood. Start small and then gradually increase your running load, that way mentally and physically your body will adjust easier.
- Pace yourself: When running it is good to pace your self according to your fitness level. If you are a beginner don’t expect to run a 5-minute mile right away. Pace your self and increase your intervals and times you run as you gain more confidence. Also, using a running app or wristwatch are great ways to pace yourself.
- Music is a must: Running outdoors or on a treadmill can be quite noisy. If you are someone who likes to zone out and focus on your run then music is a necessity. Bring your mp3 and headphones and get to business. Running with music has been proven to help you focus, pace your run, and regulate your breathing.
- Find motivation: It can be hard to stick to a routine in running but it is important to find motivation to do it. When you’re not feeling up to a run think about what is motivating you to run in the first place. Whether it be running a faster time, losing weight or improving your health find what motivates you and draw inspiration from it.
- Stretch: Most importantly listen to your body. Before and after your run you need to stretch. No matter how far or fast you run, stretch. Your body needs to recover and stretching helps do this and prevent injury from the taxing nature of running.
I hope these tips will help you on your journey to become a better runner. Remember, run at your own pace because not every run is a race.