Running for Beginners: Getting Started
Wanting to start back that New Year's resolution you always had of running?
It's best to not start off actually hitting the ground running. Everyone has to start somewhere, and a good lifestyle change is all about creating a healthy and gradual journey. A little preparation can go a long way and can help set you up for success.
Below are tips for those who want to incorporate running or jogging into their healthy lifestyle or fitness routine:
- Walk it out- Start with walking! Even if you know you can go faster, it’s always smart to start off slow and steady. Starting off walking will help prevent injuries and build up your abilities.
- Always warm up- Dynamic stretching is the best, not the slow or extended stretching (these can actually hurt you!). Lunges and ankle holds get your whole body going in your nervous system, blood flow and oxygenation, muscles and core, all while minimizing the risk of injury.
- Plenty of food and water- For new runners, daily hunger may increase since food is fuel after all. Make sure you are always eating enough and often, if not, break down your meals into smaller portions to eat throughout your day. Protein is also important to stabilize your blood sugar and to keep you full! Most importantly, always drink water!
- Always take a break- Rest days are a crucial key in starting off running. Momentum is great, but rest is also important too. It’s healthy to take days off in between your running routines to rebuild your muscle, de-stress your joints and bones, and to allow your immune system to work on itself.
Whatever you do, do not get discouraged! It’s best to stick to your own personalized routine and never compare your growth to others. Listen to your body, as your fitness is about you and what your body needs. As long as you are doing your best (safely), success is sure to come.
If you have been running and feel tightness in your legs, back and neck, make an appointment with Dr. Gotro today for a free consultation!