Five Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Running
When I first started running I would grab my first generation iPod, throw on some whatever shoes, and go as fast as I could until I ran outta gas (which was never very far) and would then walk home. (Does anyone remember the Nike pod that you put in your shoe and it connected to your iPod and Lance Armstrong would give you encouragement during your run? )
Thankfully, I loved the feeling I got while running to keep going even when i had no idea what I was doing. I was rocking Nike Frees (I just got them because they came in black and they definitely were too small), knit gym shorts and baggy t-shirts. Running definitely wasn’t as fashionable as it is now.
It was just a way for me to clear my head, get into nature, and, more often then not, help with my hangover. It took a few years, a subscription to Runners World and some advice from a client who was running marathons on the regular for everything to click. This is what I wish someone had told me when I first laced up:
How you feel running will change day to day. There are some days where I feel like I could run forever and then the very next day I feel like my legs are filled with concrete and 3 miles seems like it takes forever.
If you run, you’re a runner. For some reason when I first started running I didn’t think of myself as a runner. I didn’t think I was fast enough, or ran enough races, or look like one. That’s bullshit. If you run, you are a runner, doesn’t matter how long or fast, if you just log a mile on the treadmill or are busting out ultras.
Go slow. You don’t have to go fast every run (and you shouldn’t). Go slow on your slow, recovery days and go for it on your speedy days. I know its counterintuitive but going slow will make you faster. I found this book insanely helpful.
Shoes matter. Do yourself a favor and go to a running store and get assed for the right shoe. What you think may be cute to walk around in could hurt you running. I love my Flyknit racers, but I can't run in them. Also, go up a shoe size. I wear 8.5 in regular shoes and a 9.5 in running shoes. Wearing shoes too small is the quickest way to get blisters and lose some toenails.
Work that core and foam roll your sticks like your life depended on it. 5 minutes a day for each, that’s all you need. After each run I try to do 5 minutes of core work (planks, V sits, etc) and it makes a difference! This is a good video if you don't know where to start. A stronger core means better form. No one looks good hunched over running. And I foam roll every night. It feels good (most of the time) and it helps you from walking like the tin man.
I hope this helps you get started on your running journey! Remember, everyone starts somewhere.
Happy running my friends!