Exercising is a key component is most people’s lives. Not only is it important for physical and mental health reasons, but it pushes people to change their lifestyles for the better. Running, in particular, has numerous benefits for your health. It improves your muscle strength, bone strength, maintains your weight and is great for cardiovascular fitness.
Running or jogging is also one of the most accessible forms of exercise. Unlike most other sporting activities, you don’t need to spend a fortune on it. It all depends on your level of strength and commitment. If you want to, you can use just your basic running shoes and clothes you have lying around the house, but if you want to up your game, you definitely have a wide variety of gadgets and gimmicks to help you get the best results.
Outdoor running is also great for fresh air and sunlight to add to the cardio that your body is already getting. This is vital in improving your mood and mental health too, which is why experts consider running to be a key aspect of fitness.
So, if you are looking to start up running, there are a few basics that you need to get right first in order to ensure that you are not going to get injured and to make sure that you’ll make this a long-term activity in your daily schedule.
Start Off Slow
This is a really important thing to keep in mind when you are kicking off your jogging schedule. The chances of you injuring yourself when you start running are incredibly high. Your muscles, ligaments, and tendons will not be used to this form of activity and the sudden tightening of your muscles and the pressure on your joints could cause severe injuries.
As they say, slow and steady wins the race. Don’t overpush yourself to reach a certain speed or distance otherwise, you can do a fair amount of physical damage to yourself. Rather start with a slow and short jog and start working it up from there.
Set Your Goals
This is key. As we just mentioned, you will need to start out slow and control your pace. But in saying that, you will need to start building up your pace as you make progress otherwise you will get bored easily. Gradually growing your distance is vital in getting a fruitful exercise. So, it is advisable to start off by planning a short run, and then adding the miles onto the distance every two or three runs at a time.
This way, you are getting your body used to the impact of the run, but you are also building yourself up to getting further and becoming better. Planning your running routine is also key. You need to give yourself a day or two of rest in between each run, especially when you are starting off. But don’t extend the rest because it is easy for your body to go back to its pre-run state.
Make Use of Handy Gadgets
Investing in a hobby or exercising is just another way of ensuring that you will push yourself to actually do it. Once you start buying gadgets, you will want to use them and start challenging yourself. Gadgets like fitness watches are a great idea to add to your routine. Not only will you be able to track your distance, steps taken and calories burnt, but you can start tracking your progress over a certain amount of time. In fact, here is a great source to help you decide which fitness watch is it for you.
Once you see that you are completing longer distances and burning more and more calories, you will automatically be encouraged to continue the trend. Fitness watches are really a great source of self-competition and motivation.
Invest in a Good Pair of Running Shoes
This is going to be something that you will thank yourself for later. If you start running with ordinary sneakers, you will find yourself in a world of painful blisters, swollen joints, and aching feet after the first run. This will not only put you off running but will set back your running game for a few weeks while you try and recover. The wrong shoes will also eventually have a huge impact on your knees, hips, and ligaments. You can do permanent damage with the wrong shoes.
Everyone has different feet, and you will need to take yourself down to your local sports shop and find out how your feet are shaped. Make sure you do this before just snatching a pair off the shelf. You will also need to buy the right sort of sneakers. Running shoes are very different from walking or track shoes, so make sure you are buying a pair that is made for long-distance running.
Take a Look at Your Diet
Exercise is only one aspect of getting healthy. The other is being mindful of what you are consuming. This should happen somewhat naturally when you start running, but eating clean will catapult your routine and your results. Our best advice is to sit with your weekly running schedule and start planning your meals.
Nutrition is key to achieving your running goals, improving your endurance, healing from injuries and to heightening your energy levels. Centering your diet around fruit and vegetables is step one, and then expanding it to include other healthy ingredients like oats, peanut butter, broccoli, whole grain pasta, and chicken. Bananas are a runner’s best friend, so make sure you stock up on a bunch while you are at the supermarket. Also remember, keep yourself hydrated with lots of water at all times!
Running can be easily included in your day to day life and it’s a great way of getting your physical and mental health back on track if you have not been focusing on it for a while. Keep healthy and keep active. Once you start reaching your goals, you will be more and more motivated to keep working on your health and fitness!