Getting started with running - or anything new - is often the hardest part. What's even harder than that? Keeping it up. Nail those two and you might discover something incredible within yourself.
If you think running might not be for you, or you're undecided, here are some top tips for getting started.
People often worry what other people will think of them either when they're out running or when they tell people they're running.
If you're taking the positive step to do something good, then that is what counts. The vast majority of people you see while running won't pay you any attention.
You'll also discover an extraordinary community of like-minded people, and you'll likely see many other runners while out, whatever time of day it is or wherever you are. This community will welcome you with open arms.
Occasionally there are stories of a small minority of people who may think it's OK to heckle. This can happen from time to time, whoever you are. If it does, simply rise above it - it's just a sign of insecurity on their part after all.
Don't let the thought that running is too difficult stop you from giving it a go. Running is what you make it, and that's part of its beauty.
If you've never run before, or you're worried about your weight, start with a walk/run programme, using walking as the initial basis from which to gradually build running time.
You need to ease yourself in to get your body used to the impact, and to build your strength. Walking is perfectly OK and many coaches use the walk-run method as a key part of their programmes - and it's something we at Let's Run can support you with.
This one is particularly important. If you have belief in yourself, you can achieve anything, and with running it’s no different.
The great thing is you'll find that belief and running go hand-in-hand - the better you get at running and the more often you run, the more belief you'll have in yourself in all areas of life. It sounds silly but it's true. You just need that first sprinkling of belief to get you out the door.
Once you do, in time you'll realise the value running can add to your life.
Goals are important to measure your progress against. They also give your training more meaning, which can be a motivating factor whenever you're struggling to get going.
Initial goals can be anything important to you: losing a certain amount of weight, completing your first 5k, improving your fitness and wellbeing, and so on.
It's important that your goal(s) are realistic and achievable within the time frame you set, otherwise it can be a bit of a turn-off if the bar is set too high.
If you're not sure what's realistic or achievable, a coach can work with you to help you define your goals, give you motivation and belief, and help you hit those goals.
Just as goals are important, so is the route to hitting those goals. If your target goal is six months away, it may feel easier to not train on a given day because you still have months to make it up.
This is why incremental goals - weekly, daily - and mapping your progress is crucial. It's also incredibly satisfying to look back over the past week and see the progress you've made - to how you've developed as a result of your hard work and belief.
A training log can help you with this; a place for you to jot down your sessions and anything else important such as your feelings about the session, your nutrition, and so on.
The running community is a whole new world of welcoming, supportive people just like you. You may find joining a running club (when able to) or getting friends or family involved gives you the extra motivation and the opportunity to share the joy (and hard work!).
Or, get social online: join Strava - or another running-tracking app, get involved on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook. You'll soon find that there are thousands of others waiting to interact with you and support you.
Get down to your local shop (when you can) and pick up a running magazine - Runner's World, Women's running, Trail Running Mag, etc. - and see what you think. They are far from exclusive and specialist - they're entirely inclusive and feature a whole range of different types of people from all over the world telling their inspiring stories and giving tips to improve your running.
If you like it, subscribe and get it to your door each month. As well as that, sign up to get emails from bloggers or other running websites. Five minutes with Google and you'll probably find a whole lot of inspiration.
Running isn't scary, and there's a whole new world waiting if you just take that first step. Sometimes a coach can make all the difference: a personalised training programme such as a 0-5k plan, unlimited support, and the motivation that may help you keep on track to your goals.
If you'd like find out more about coaching with Let's Run, send a message via the box below.
Copyright©2020 Let's Run Ltd. All Rights Reserved.