How to Become a Runner: Tips for New Runners

Today, 5 June 2024, marks this year’s Global Running Today. Running is a fantastic form of exercise – it’s great for cardiovascular health, it leads to better sleep, it can lower your chance of developing arthritis, and as any dedicated runner will tell you, the runner’s high is real! 

If you haven’t jumped on the running bandwagon yet, why not give it a go this summer? Here are some of our top tips on how to become a runner: 

Find your pace 

Don’t expect to master a 5k your first day out running! Start with short runs and gradually increase your speed and distance as you get more comfortable and build up your endurance. 

Listen to your body 

When you feel yourself getting tired or short of breath, it’s perfectly fine to take a break. Stopping to catch your breath or walk for a bit isn’t cheating! It can help you keep your energy up to help you run for longer. Pushing yourself too hard could lead to injuries or burnout, especially when you’re first starting out. 

Invest in good running shoes 

The trainers you wear for the gym may not cut it when you’re out running – footwear designed specifically for running offers a different level of support and helps to prevent injuries. If you want to make sure you’re getting a good pair, some running shops will measure your gait to find the perfect match for you. 

Mix it up 

A change of scenery can help keep running interesting. Use your runs as a chance to explore your local area and keep things fresh by regularly trying new routes. You may even consider joining a running group to keep yourself motivated.  

Stretch it out 

Warm-up and cool-down are important to help your muscles recover after a run and to help prevent injury. Start your run with some dynamic moves like leg swings, walking lunges, and high knees. Afterwards, stretch out your muscles with some static exercises like a quad stretch, calf stretch, and IT band stretch. Using a foam roller also helps your muscles recover post-run. 

Celebrate your achievements 

No matter how big or small your achievements may seem, be proud of your progress and enjoy the journey! It can be something as simple as jogging for five minutes without a rest or something major like running a half marathon. You could even use a reward system to motivate you to keep achieving – for example, you could treat yourself to a new pair of running leggings when you complete your first 10k or upgrade to the latest fitness tracker when you’ve hit six months of running consistently. 

Ready to get started? Lace up your running shoes and head out for a jog! It may just become your new favourite form of exercise – you’ll never know until you try it! 

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