Ready to give running a go? Some rules apply whatever your fitness level, according to Fabien Laurette from running website Jogging-plus.com: warm-up before each session, drink before and after you run, go one step at a time in terms of effort level, and don’t forget to stretch at the end.
Before you start, here’s five running tips that you should know:
Get back into running with these 5 tips
1. Don’t stop
The first goal that anyone can aspire to is running for 30 minutes without stopping. If you really aren’t used to any exercise whatsoever, you won’t be able to make it the first time you try. That’s perfectly normal: your body will need time to adapt to your new hobby.
Consequently, it’s crucial to go one step at a time and stick to your gradually more intense objectives to stay motivated. The trick is to alternate between running and walking phases during each session.
2. Take it slow
Start your session with a five-minute walk, then run for a minute at a pace that lets you hold a conversation (called “endurance pace”), followed by a two-minute walk.
Repeat the “run-walk” sequence several times and tinker with the number of minutes dedicated to walking and running until you find the combination that suits you best. Choose intervals that bring a reasonable amount of fatigue, knowing that you’ll be repeating them several times per session.
At the end of the workout, walk for five minutes in order to get your body back to its normal state.
3. How to get better
Two 30-minute sessions per week will put you on track for rapid progress and meeting the goal you set. Each training session should be a carbon copy of the initial session’s intervals (alternating between walking and running, and starting and finishing with a walk). Once you are comfortable with the basic sequence, you can start running longer and walking less, according to how you feel.
After a few weeks, start your workouts by running from the get-go instead of walking. The walking component of your workout should have dropped drastically by then.
Depending on your abilities and current fitness level, you will need one to two months using this approach to be able to sustain a 30-minute run without stopping.
4. False beginners, beware
If you already practice another sport or believe that you have decent stamina because you used to exercise frequently, you can go through the training plan at a faster pace, or run for a longer time. But bear in mind that listening to your body is crucial in order to prevent injuries.
5. Make running goals: Train for races
You can set a new goal to stay motivated: running for 45 minutes, tackling a 5K or 10K race, for instance. There are plenty of training plans available for these new goals.