Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Helpful Tips For New Runners

Lately, I have been asked if I have any tips for someone who is just starting to run and I thought I would share with you what I have personally learned from experience, research, and my runner friends. 
So, you have decided to start running?  First, let me congratulate you! Every great thing starts with the decision to do it! You will not be disappointed with starting to run, but please have your expectations at an appropriate level. In other words, don’t expect to run a marathon in a month and do not expect that it is going to be easy in the beginning. Like the old adage, no pain no gain. Expect that, but don’t push it to be too painful.

 The number one rule is:

  1. Listen to your body. Stop if it truly hurts. Don’t injure yourself. You are going to have days when you feel like you can't run, so stop. You are also going to have those days when you feel like you can run forever. Truly enjoy those days and ‘Run Forever’!
  2. Buy proper running shoes. Get “fitted” at a running store. For example in Peoria, Illinois we use Running Central as our main shoe fitting shop. They will assess the proper style of running shoe for you by seeing if you pronate, underpronate, overpronate, etc. Also, keep a log of how many miles you run in your shoes. I make sure to replace my shoes after every 300 miles regardless of how good they look. Soon I will post a review about my three favorite pairs of running shoes.
  3. Stretch before and after a run. Consider adding yoga into your cross training routine.Consider foam rolling. Bekah will be providing a demonstration on our blog soon about foam rolling.
  4. I personally recommend cross training. Biking and swimming are two of the best cross training exercises to combine with running. I also do weight training. However, do not add heavy weight training into your regimen if you are currently training for a race. Add weight training in gradually. I truly believe the reason I have not had a substantial injury (knock on wood) is due to stretching and cross training.
  5. If you can, run with a Running Group. You can “Google” running groups in your area or search for them on Facebook. In Peoria, we run with the Peoria Sole Sister's Running Group. Not only is there power in numbers, but you will make lifelong friends. A running group is a wealth of knowledge and support. Plus, it is much safer to run outside with a group.
  6. Always hydrate! Need I say more?! 
  7. Rest and recovery days are important to your training schedule. Rest days should be spread out and not taken consecutively. Recovery days such as easy short runs, easy long runs, or easy cross training days should be just that, easy! Save your intensity for the hill workouts, track workouts, tempo runs, intervals, fartlek, and races.
  8. You should tackle hills by shortening your stride, maintaining a straight back, strong abs, and the same pace while keeping my eyes up has really helped me get over the top.
  9. Wear proper running attire. Ladies, a proper non-chaffing running bra is almost as important as the shoes. There is nothing Sexy about getting a hicky from a Sports Bra.
  10. Want to go longer distance? Then slow down your speed.
  11. Wear dri-fit, wick away material. This will keep you much warmer on cold runs, because it gets the sweat away from your body. In addition, it will keep you cooler on warm runs and provides less chance of chaffing.
  12. Buy running socks that are dri-fit, also. Same reasons. I like Swiftwick brand.
  13. This is a tip from my mother-in-law who is a seasoned runner: If you can’t catch your breath, drop your arms. Yes, you will look like a penguin running however it slows down your heart rate.
  14. Run safe and smart. What do I mean by this? If you saw what happened to Sherry Arnold in her quaint small town you know exactly what I am talking about. If you can, run with a buddy. I know this isn’t always practical. If I choose to run by myself I always carry pepper spray, my phone, and let someone know when/where I am running and my expected time of return.       
  15. Running is a mental sport! The minute you think you can’t, your mind will say you can! Running is 90% mental.
  16. When you are having a bad day or a bad run, run in a cemetery. It puts everything in perspective. I had to borrow this piece of advice from Tracy who is one of the ladies in my Sole Sister’s running group. This is great advice, Tracy!
  17. If you are so intrigued and want to be inspired, read or rent the Spirit of the Marathon. I love this documentary. I also love the books, "Run Less, Run Faster" and "Run like a Mother". In addition to loving Hal Higdon's training plans for beginners. He does a great job!
  18. If you become interested in connecting with other runners around the country and documenting your miles check out the Daily Mile website. It is very motivational and has some great gadgets.
  19. If you decide you want to track your distance and running routes there are many free apps for your phone like iMapMyRun and Nike Plus. There are also many free websites (www.mapmyrun.com or Gmap Pedometer) or you can invest in a running watch. I love my Garmin 305!
  20. Yes, your weight does contribute to your running speed. According to Runner's World, there are various formulas that predict the effect of weight loss on running speed. The effect of weight loss and run pace multiplies over distance; meaning that the longer the run, the more significant the amount of time saved. Some estimates project that losing ten pounds can result in a savings of 20 seconds per mile, so for a 5k, this means one whole minute of time, and when translated to the marathon distance, this is almost nine minutes of time saved! A PR (Personal Record) is just waiting to happen!
  21. Of course you should always always talk to your health care provider before starting any new training program.  

Again, I am beyond excited for anyone who is starting to run and I am always happy to share my experiences and answer questions. I am by no means an expert, but together I believe we can learn a lot from each other!

 Run Pretty! Run Happy! Run Fun!


Do you have running tips that you
would like to share?

If so, please comment below.

We can all learn from each other!

Don't forget to comment on our "Sexy Mother Runner Gear Giveaway"!
Your opinion matters and we can't wait to help you represent your
"Sexy Mother Runnership"!

Questions? Comments? We would love to hear from you!
 Email us at sexymotherrunner@yahoo.com

No comments:

Post a Comment