If you’ve ever genuinely wanted to start running as a hobby, gave it a try and found it to be difficult and painful, this one is for you.
Running is a hobby for millions of people around the world. Looking at human history you’ll see we came from nomads, explorers, hunters and foragers. Hence, running is in our DNA… We were born to run. It is good for the soul.
However, many people who are just starting may find it torturous and give up. With this terrible experience branded into their memories, they will wonder how on Earth people run regularly and decide running is just not for them.
If you’re one of these people, you CAN run. You CAN do 5K. You can even do a marathon!
Crawl before you walk; walk before you run
If you’re completely new to running and exercise, it is best to begin with a walking regimen. Start by walking 3-4 days a week for 20 minutes and build up from there. You can visit a park, walk around the track or campus of a local school, stroll through town, or find a scenic trail through the woods.
Beginning by walking can build up muscle strength and cardiovascular endurance. Other good practices are riding a bike, stationary, or hiking.
Once you’re used to covering some ground begin to sprinkle some short runs in with your walks. Begin with a moderate pace that feels comfortable. Focus on your breathing and landing softly. Over time you can increase the distance and intensity of your workouts and build up to running a few miles comfortably.
Have the right gear
The right pair of shoes can make all the difference in the world. Everyone’s foot and method of movement is different. It is important to have a shoe that accommodates your individual needs.
Robert’s Running and Walking Shop at 1440 4th Avenue in Huntington is an excellent place to find what you need. They offer expert service and take time to watch your foot motion so you can choose a shoe that is right for you. They can also offer advice on running and walking techniques and have other gear and accessories you may find useful.
Find a running partner(s)
Walking or running with a friend can keep you motivated by having someone to share the joys and hardships with. There are runners in every community and many welcome the opportunity to share the exhilaration of the practice.
There are also run clubs in the area who conduct group runs and networking opportunities. The Wayne Run Club and the Huntington Road Runners can be found on Facebook and welcome all paces and levels of experience.
Sign up for a race
Choose a 5k or other race, register, and circle the date on your calendar. Having an impending event will provide extra motivation to train. Running/walking events are excellent places to make friends and enjoy the fellowship of community. It is a fun atmosphere where everyone is welcome and it is common for people to walk the entire distance.
Remember you are only competing against yourself and its about completing the distance, not how fast you do it. Get out there, have fun and enjoy nature. You’ll be doing marathons in no time.