Running is a great exercise for getting fit, losing weight, and your general wellness. Starting is often the hardest part. Here are a few basic tips for starting your running programme and hopefully reaching your wellness and fitness goals.
Set your targets
You should first and foremost set a target and make a plan. Do you want to lose weight? Or get fit? Whatever your target is, you should set a programme and build some events into the programme. You can reap fitness rewards with just 30 minutes a day, three to five times per week.
You should sit down and work out your plan. Start by running for 20 minutes at a time, three times per week. Gradually increase the amount of time you're running and the number of days you run, but do not increase either until you feel comfortable completing your current level of training. If 20 minutes is too much, don't be afraid to take walking breaks. Perhaps begin by running for 4 minutes and walking for 1 minute, until you complete the 20 minutes. As you get stronger, begin eliminating the walk breaks.
What do you need?
One advantage of the sport of running is that so little gear is required. But the most important investment runners should make is in a good pair of running shoes, walking, or tennis shoes. Running shoes re best purchased at special running stores, where you can get tests completed on your gait and your running style.
You should also have a quality, well-fitted sports bra, preferably made of wicking material to keep you cooler and drier. A digital sports watch is also helpful. Fitbit is a great device for running and exercise in general, or another fitness tracker.
Running can be hard on your legs. Therefore, you should make sure that you stretch properly both before and after you run. What stretches should you do? Check out this video for some easy stretches to do before and after you run.
On particular stretch you should do is focused on your body's iliotibial band, or ITB for short. This runs on the outside of your thigh between your hip and shin. It is common for injuries in this area of your body, particularly with running. It can manifest itself in a pain in the outside of your knee a few kilometres into your run. New runners who push themselves too hard can also easily injure this area.
Should I run on the treadmill or outside?
Treadmills are a perfect alternative when the weather is uncooperative and can be helpful in easing into new distances or paces.
But outside is far better. You actually move, you get fresh air, and it is much more interesting than facing a wall or a television.
Plus, once you become accustomed to running outside, you can take it anywhere. Just bring your runners. Also, the outdoors can be more challenging. Running hills is a great way to improve leg strength and burn calories. This will get you going. When you run up a hill, shorten your stride and pump your arms forward. Going down a hill, let gravity do the work and give it a little help by leaning slightly forward. Once you reach the top of the hill and plateau, you will feel a burn in your legs. It’s all good!
What should you eat?
Running burns a lot of calories - an average of 100 calories per mile.
You don't really need to change your diet unless you're training for an endurance event like a marathon.
But it's important to not restrict carbohydrates. Get plenty of protein to rebuild muscles, and eat sensible, healthy, high-energy foods (plenty of fruit, vegetables, and whole grains).
Will you lose weight?
Yes you will!
If it is your goal to lose weight, running is an excellent way of doing so. As with any exercise program, if you expend more calories than you intake, then you will lose weight.
One great thing about running is that it is versatile. If you want to get fit for a particular event or lose weight, you can change up your running to match those goals. If you wish to lose weight, try some sprinting. That will cause you to be out of breath very quickly and sweat, and will burn far more calories quickly. Also, hills can cause you to burn more calories.