I was a runner growing up and was able to continue until about 2010, when I ran into some health issues. Since then, I’ve really been reluctant to get back into it! I asked my friend Jac to cover some tips on getting back into running, because I figured there may be others like me who have been meaning to do it. To me, Fall is the perfect season to begin the journey. I hope you learn as much as I did!
Running isn’t easy, but everyone can do it. It’s just you against yourself!!
Here are my top 10 tips to help you get started:
Tip #1. Consult Your Physician. This is very important! Do your own research as well. Know your target along with training and maximum heart rate before starting any running program. Safety first!
Tip #2. Invest in a Quality Running Shoe and Sports Bra. I cannot stress this one enough for the ambitious long distance runner. Find a local running shoe store that will properly examine your running style and recommend the best shoe brands for you. My favorite running shoes are Brooke and Mizuno. As for sports bras for the ladies, seek high impact styles that hold each breast in a separate cup. Search sites like Amazon.com for discounts on both!
Tip #3. Define Your Why? The nation’s obesity statistics are heartbreaking. More than one third of U.S. adults are overweight. It’s obvious that health and fitness goals are good reasons to run, but maybe there is a BIGGER why! Maybe its relieving stress, connecting with other people or supporting a local charity. Whatever your “why” is, just make sure its big enough to keep you motivated.
Tip #4. Track your progress. I wholeheartedly believe in S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-Based) goals even with leisure activities. Consider using apps like Run Keeper and My Fitness Pal to gain motivation as you progress as a runner. I started out running at an eleven minute per mile pace. Currently, I’m running nine minute miles. Just this month, I placed 2nd in my age division in a national race! Remember, it’s just YOU against yourself!
Tip #5. Join a Running Group. Get your family and friends involved as well. It’s so important to stay engaged with other runners! Special Thanks to Black Girls Run in Atlanta, GA, Donna’s Divas in Chattanooga, TN, Crescent City Cuties in New Orleans, LA and my family’s health and wellness group, Magnolia Fire! They have all inspired me to run, but more importantly to stay ACTIVE!
Tip #6. Pace Yourself! I have only been running consistently for the past two and a half years. My progress was gradual because I wanted to avoid injuries as much as possible. Listen to your body! Run/walk intervals are a great start.
Tip #7. Adopt a Consistent Workout Regimen and Healthy Eating. You cannot completely enjoy running without a well balanced diet and strength training program. I focus on muscle strengthening at least 3 days a week in addition to running. Push ups are great for a long distance runner’s posture. As for healthy eating, peanut butter sandwiches and fresh vegetable and fruit juice are two of my favorite pre/post running snacks!
Tip #8. Consider Devotional Running. Spending time with God is something many runners do without even realizing it. I’m a huge advocate for meditation and quiet time. So often the hustle pace of life gets in the way of our intentions to spend that much needed time in silence. Completing a devotional run has become one of my favorite ways to gain peace and clarity.
Tip #9. Have Fun! Get creative with your running gear. Switch up your music playlist. Participate in an organized race and support a national or local cause. Make it meaningful!
Tip #10. Don’t Believe The MYTHS About Running! You may be telling yourself running isn’t for you because you’re over weight, too old, have heavy breasts, or bad knees. But consider the above tips, especially #1, before ruling it out all together. I have witnessed runners of all ages and sizes. Running is for everybody!
You can follow Jac on Instagram at @firstladyjc (for running) and @thejuicekrewe (healthy juicing and food).