Just recently I helped start a runners club at work. The idea of starting a runners club came from the members of the track and field team, which I am part of. We officially launched the club just a few weeks ago.
Running is not a new sport among employees in the company that I work for. In fact, quite a number of people at work have already been running regularly in races. However, for those who are new to running and who are planning of taking up running as a form of exercise or a new sport, the most frequently asked question that we encounter is how do they start running.
I am quite new also in running, having taken the sport just last year. However, I’ve participated in several 3k’s, 5k’s, 10k’s and 21k’s in more than a year of running, but that does not make me an expert in running; however, based on my own experience, I’d like to share the steps that I took when I started into running. I hope they will find the following helpful to get one started.
1. Prepare your gears. Running is a very simple sport. All one needs to get started are: 1.) a good pair of running shoes, 2.) shorts or jogging pants, 3.) and a shirt or singlet. High technology gadgets are not needed at this point. When I started running, I used my old pair of Nike shoes, jogging pants, and dri-fit shirts that I used working out in a gym. Sometimes, I may need to wear a cap.
2. Run…or walk and run, if you can’t run continuously. Find a place where you can run. It may be on a treadmill, on the road, around your neighborhood block, or on a track oval. Just find a place where it is convenient and safe for you to run. I run mostly on the road either early morning or early evening, depending on my availability. When I was starting, I could not run continuously. I alternate running and walking until my legs are strong enough to sustain continuous running.
3. Set a goal to stay motivated. This could be as simple as running 30 minutes continuously without walking, running a 3k race in 2 months or the more ambitious one, running a half marathon in 4-6 months. It is really up to you. Have a regular running schedule and as much as possible stick to it. Initially, my goal was just to run in a 3k race without injuries. Having done that, I leveled up and I set another goal to run 5k’s, then 10k’s and eventually a 21k which I did 6 months after I got into running. My goals kept me motivated to run regularly and train hard.
4. Find a running buddy. A running buddy can help you stay motivated. I usually run alone; however, I also enjoy running with a friend or with other people especially when I’m doing long distance running. Running with a friend or a loved one can be a good opportunity to catch up with each other or talk about stuff, etc. Lastly,
5. Keep learning. Research about running. Ask your runner friends about running. Check the Internet. Read articles or blogs about running. The more you learn about running, the more you appreciate the sport and you also learn how to prevent injuries.
Having written all that, what are you waiting for? Get your gears and hit the road! See you on the road guys! Have fun running!