It is officially February and if you have not kicked start any of your New Year’s resolution yet, here is a guide to outdoor running for beginners which I found on Vogue Australia website. Whilst fitness level varies from individual, it can take some time to build your fitness up. The key to this guide is patience.
The following is adapted from Ellie Lemons’ article published on Vogue Australia.
I am very distance orientated so I will decide a distance and I won’t stop running until I reach it. If you think you’re similar to this then try the following: aim to run for 1 km, then walk for 1 km, then run 1 km and so forth. The next time you run, run 2 km, walk 1 km, run t2 km. Eventually working your way up to just running 3 km, then walking 1 km. This way you will slowly build up. It doesn’t matter how slow or fast you go.
Comment: This is really true for all beginners. You do not have to jump straight into 5 km or 8 km run. You gradually ease into it. I did not start off with 5 km straight. I am also gradually increasing my running time and decreasing my resting time so I can finish my 5 km run in a shorter time.
If you find you are more time orientated then set a time to run, try to start with 25 minutes. Run for five minutes, walk for five, and alternate. On your next run, run for seven minutes and walk for five. Then the following run, run for 10 minutes, walk for five. Try to aim to run for a full 30 minutes eventually.
Comment: If you are having a busy schedule like almost anyone, you can fix yourself a period of time, then try to cover as much distance as you can. Even a 100 meter improvement is an improvement. The aim is to get yourself out of the house or the chair and get moving.
If you prefer music, then that’s great! Make a playlist; choose songs with good beats or interesting lyrics. Run for one song, walk for one song. Then run for two songs, walk for one song and continue in this pattern. Don’t go and pick the shortest songs either! Run slow if you need. Working up to running the whole playlist (try for 30 minutes, about seven to eight songs).
Comment: I always run with my iPhone 5c with a specific playlist just for running. It definitely helps to get the adrenaline pumping and it motivates me to finish my last few meters of my run before I get a break.
Find your pace
It’s important to find the pace that works for you. It’s not a sprint, just a comfortable speed where you can breathe properly and feel as comfortable as you can while running! Start slower, and if it’s easy enough try increase a little bit. Using an app or a running watch will help you as it times your speed per kilometre.
Comment: I do agree for beginners, this is not a sprint. Sprint trains your speed but consistent pace of running builds up your stamina.
A quick tip: make sure you’ve waited at least an hour after eating before you run, or run first thing in the morning before you’ve eaten!
Running takes self-discipline. Some days I start running and I have the best run ever, then sometimes I run and I cannot wait for it to end. Not every run you do will be amazing. Sometimes you’ll feel sick, sometimes you’ll be exhausted. It’s all a part of it, but I promise, not a lot beats the feeling you get after you have a good run!