Easy tips to kick start your running
Author- Julia (Podiatrist)
At the end of July, I ran my first half marathon (21.1km) for the Run Melbourne event. I have never attempted something like this before and have not been particularly sporty outside a few gym classes. Even though I’m a Podiatrist, there was so much to learn about running and to make sure I was doing everything correctly. So here are my eight tips to help any beginner become a more successful runner.
1. Train for a goal. Having some kind of goal in mind whether it is being able to run 5km and build your fitness or compete in a 10km fun run, it’s important to set goals. When you feel like there is purpose behind your training it’s a lot more motivating and will keep you going when you don’t really feel like it.
2. Make sure you have the right shoes. This is very important. There are lots of different shoe brands out there and also different levels of support, it can all get very confusing. Getting fitted correctly (we highly recommend sole motive or athlete’s foot) will mean you reduce your risk of injury and make you feel more comfortable when running. I found one shoe was great for me until I started training above 10km and then I needed something with a bit more support and cushion to see me through. Feel free to ask us here at Talaria for shoe tips at your next appointment. We can run a quick assessment and will be able to give you some expert advice on the best running shoes for your foot.
3. Don’t overdo it- pace yourself. When some people decide they are going to start running they put on their shoes and go as fast and as far as they can. Going too fast too soon is the easiest and quickest way to burn out and get injured. When I first started running I used the Nike + running app, it helps to follow a plan and tailor it to your needs. It will help you ease into it and keep you from feeling discouraged.
4. Get injuries looked at early on. I only had one setback when I had to change my runners to suit the longer distances. From this I developed a small case of plantar fasciitis (arch pain). After a few treatments of shockwave therapy, I was back to my training in no time. With all injuries it is about addressing it before it really starts to hold you back. Get the small niggles looked at as soon as you can, so that it’s much easier to treat and means less down time for you and more running! For more information about shockwave therapy and plantar fasciitis follow the links below.
5. Track Your Progress. By keeping a training log, it’s an excellent way to track your progress and stay motivated. As I said above I use the Nike + Run Club app, but there are many others like Strava, Run Keeper and even a new one called Couch to 5km.
6. Have a backup plan. Living in Melbourne means we really don’t know what the weather will deal us. On my half marathon I had rain, wind and even hot sun at the end. Don’t let the bad weather give you an excuse not to run, make sure you have the appropriate clothing for the heat and cold. If you know you won’t run outside when it is too hot or cold, make sure you have a place to train indoors.
7. Beat boredom. Boredom can be part of the huge mental struggle you have to face when first running. I enjoy listening to podcasts and music, you have to keep it fun and interesting. You can vary your routes for different scenery and even running with others may help.
8. Enjoy yourself. This was something I had to remind myself when I was 17km into my race and feeling exhausted. Enjoy your training and journey, it is so rewarding.
I found that by following all these tips got me through my toughest challenge yet. I hope that some of these tips prove beneficial for you too.