After some encouragement, a few friends have agreed to go for a run with me. I asked them back in March and they’re finally agreeing. Their responses were always:
That’s so cool that you run – I can’t do that.
Ugh, I don’t know how you can stand to run!
I’m not good at it! I don’t even know where to start!
I don’t set track records; I don’t conquer the newest & longest race; my name isn’t known in the running realm. BUT that doesn’t mean that I’m not a runner. It does mean that I know what I want, I know how to work for it and I learn where my limitations are and how much I can push myself past them.
Wanna know the best part of that? YOU TOTALLY CAN, TOO!! I know, I know. Excellent news, right? Right!
Here are the basic tips I followed and loved when I first started to become a “runner.”
1) Just go do it – think Nike. Stop making excuses and stop saying that you need to FIND the time, because if you’re continuously looking for it, it’ll never show up. MAKE the time. Get out there. Walk out that door. Step on that treadmill. Just go.
2) Get fitted for running shoes – have a gait analysis. Learn why you need certain kinds of shoes and how having the wrong shoes & support can lead to injury.
3) When the going gets rough, don’t get frustrated! Everyone has their good and bad days with running. One ‘bad’ day doesn’t mean that you’ll never run more than a mile or that you fail at life so you should stop trying. DON’T STOP. Whatever you do, keep going and trust that it gets better (because it totally does).
4) Pace yourself – don’t start out too fast. Even though you may begin with tons of energy and therefore think you can go crazy at the beginning, you’ll wear yourself out quickly leading to physical defeat and ultimately emotional & mental defeat. Just don’t to it. Start out slow.
5) Know the rules of the road – can’t tell you how many bikers and runners I see who don’t know the basic rules for flow of traffic. If you’re a biker, you ride WITH traffic. If you’re a runner, you run AGAINST traffic. Got it? Good.
6) Find your motivation – quotes, songs, friends, family, your past, the hottie who just moved in next door, the future. Whatever it is, find it and let it help you reach your short term goals AND your long term goals. Sometimes music/quotes loose their luster. If that happens, it’s ok! Just find some new ones 🙂 There are a ton out there! Ask your friends or online sources for good recommendations.
7) Listen to your body – it’s a lot smarter than we give it credit for sometimes. It can tell when it’s “good pain” (the kind that you get when you’re progressing and pushing yourself in strength and stamina) and “bad pain” (the kind you shouldn’t push through). It can tell you if you’ve gone too far or if you can afford to speed up a little. Pay attention to the little signals it gives you along your way and then make sure that you take all the time you need for recovery! Don’t skip out on that goodness.
8) Have fun! It can be hard; it’ll make you sweat; your legs will turn to jello; your lungs will burn. It’s all totally worth it. Run with friends. Change where you go. Change up your music. If all of that looses its magic after a while, buy new workout clothes or shoes. Strange as it sounds, it helps! Especially because you’re more likely to go running if you feel good/attractive in your running clothes 🙂
So go out there and do it! You totally can. And the best part is that every day-every week-it’ll keep getting easier than it was before.