Did all the coverage of the NYC marathon get you pumped up to run? Let me help you avoid a few common mistakes people make when they decide to make running a part of their lives.
- Start with where you are now and take time to build up your strength and endurance. Coach Jenny over at Runner's Word says, "Gradually progressing from running with power walking breaks to continuous running is the single fastest way to progress without injury and with a smile on your face." Who doesn't want to smile while they pant?
- Don’t run aimlessly, have a plan. My favorite plan for beginners is the Couch to 5k routine from Cool Running. If that is too much structure for you, you can run until you are tired and walk until you are bored.
- Buy yourself some nice sneaks. Running is a very repetitive action and you want to cushion your joints as much as possible, so buy shoes made for running and don’t skimp. Plus, if you lay out the big bucks for shoes won’t you regularly run in them to get your money’s worth out of the shoes?
- Have a goal. It is a great idea to have a goal so you are working towards something. Pick something doable and motivating like being able to run continuously for 30 minutes or to run a 5k road race. You can find a race near you at Active.com.
- Warm-up and cool-down. If you take care of your body, it will take care of you. Warm-up for 5 minutes with a brisk walk before you start jogging and take 5 minutes to walk briskly to cool-down. Sandwiching your run with a 5 minute warm up and cool down will help prevent injury and keep you out running.