are you taking up running in 2009?

So, is running part of your New Year’s resolution? Here are some of the lessons I learned when I was starting out. I hope these tips will make it easier for you to jumpstart your running lifestyle.

1. Shoes. Invest in a good pair of shoes suited for your foot type. It took me awhile to run 30mins straight because I was wearing a pair that wasn’t very comfortable. When I finally found a pair suited for my foot type, running 30mins was a breeze. When shopping for shoes, don’t be shy. Put them on and hop and jog around in them.  

2. Set a goal. Is it weight loss? Run your first 5K? Run a marathon? Run an ultramarathon? 😛 It’s easier to keep logging km after km if you are clear on why you are doing it. In the middle of a training run or a race, I guarantee you that you will still find yourself asking, “Why am I doing this again?” At least if you have a goal, you will have a ready answer. Or if you are like me, you will just accept that you are plain crazy and will keep on running.

3. Make a plan. It is easier to get from point A to point B if you have a road map. Having training plan is one of the keys to success. There are days when you can’t follow what you planned. It’s okay. You live to run another day. If you drop off your routine you can easily go back on track by consulting your plan.

4. Start slow and you will last longer. When we were kids, we sprint then end up bended from our waist with our hands on our knees and gasping for air. Fun! I recommend doing it every so often to remind us our childhood. However, if you want to incorporate running into your life, I would suggest that you start slow and steady. You will notice that you are able to sustain running longer if you do it at a slower pace. If you can’t do a straight run yet, walk/run is a great way to get you started. Be patient, promise you will get faster.

5. Warm-up and stretching. Often neglected and disregarded but these are very important in preventing running related injuries.

6. Race. This is a good way evaluate your training. The adrenaline rush of being in a race is primal and priceless. You don’t have to do it every single Sunday but I recommend setting a goal race to help keep you motivated.

7. Have fun. If running becomes a chore then its no longer fun and you are likely to quit. Run with friends. Make new running friends. Run with your family and make it a bonding moment. After awhile, you will find yourself redefining fun. Seeing kms pile up is fun. Completing a 5x400m workout is exhilarating. Thursday 10K tempo, the best! And that crazy 42.195, no longer impossible but dream in the horizon.

 

For girls only:

 

8. Invest in a good sports bra. The last thing you want is to subject yourself to unnecessary pain. Or worse, a black eye. A good sports bra also ensures that you have the correct running form. I often see female runners with hunched up shoulders and arms not swinging but pressed tightly to the sides to tame the bounce and protect the girls. So before anything else, go out and buy a pair or two. When you try them on, try jogging in place and jumping to see if they support you well.

9. Red letter days. To run or not to run? Well, if you can run on these days, I say “Why not!” If you can’t, then don’t. There’s always tomorrow.  Based on experience, sooner or later the desire to run will be stronger than the discomfort.

Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year! 

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8 thoughts on “are you taking up running in 2009?

  1. one more thing bards…. degree of pronation, even with normal arches some tend to pronate more… the more severe the pronation the higher degree of stabllity for the shoe =)

    agree. shoes are funny. first you just want something that looks good on you. then you find out you need something suited for your foot type. and sometimes when you finally find the perfect shoe and they stop producing it.

    oh btw … ahem-ahem … *public servce announcement* if you have running shoes that you are not wearing Baldrunner is still accepting donations under his Donate a Shoe Project.

  2. Bards
    Love the Blog entry. I know I’m late, but Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and all of the wonderful every days.

    I keep thinking… I am not going to make this a resolution… that makes it to easy to fail. If I make myself understand that this is my choice and my new lifestyle, I have a better chance of reaching all the goals I set.

    Thanks for always being real.

    merry christmas to you too and your family. im still rooting for you … and that Disney finisher’s medal. 😛

  3. wen i was jus starting the 2 important things that i invested in was shoes and digiwatch… nice info. meri xmas.

    agree, watch is an important feedback tool … doesnt have to be a garmin or a polar or kung anik-anik na hightech… basta may time, preferably digital better kung may stopwatch feature. when I started i used the stopwatch of my celfone.

    a friend gave me freebie watch from a gas station … im calling it my Suuntok. i think i will use that for track workouts in 2009.

  4. To increase the feel-good factor, I would add smartly cut dri-fit singlets (or their equivalent for women). And running shorts. Newbies tend to stand out with their “douse-me” cotton tees and baggy basketball shorts or “jogging pants” that weigh at least a tonne ha ha

    so true! dri-fit outfits definitely adds pogi/kikay points…err contributes to efficient running too.

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