Running is by far the easiest and cheapest form of exercise. I have been clocking up the miles since I was a teenager and if I'm honest there has probably not been a week where I haven't ran 5 miles minimum. Its the perfect way to release stress and process thoughts while getting some good cardio in. I love the freedom of running new routes and in different environments. When i am i working away and I arrive in a new country it is usually my way of seeing the sights at sunrise. So here are some of my tips and favourite pieces of clothing and equipment.
Prepare don’t push
If you have not been for a run in a while or you are completely new to running. Take it easy! Before starting any run make sure you stretch out your legs, core and hips. Don’t forget to stretch out your ankles!
Don’t tense up! When you first start running you will be quite stiff it’s completely normal… But, try to start loose and relax. When you are tense in your upper body while running it will exhaust you. A great trick I read was to take a piece of paper and roll it up into a cylinder. Run with the paper in your hand like a baton. The trick is to not scrunch up the paper!
Pace your self
Your running along at a steady pace but then a good song comes on and boom your off with super speed. 5 minutes later you are completely out of breath and struggling to complete the run! We all do it! Try to find your rhythm and stick to it. Match your stride to your breath!
Push through stopping
You may hit a point during your run where you think you need to stop. But try to carry on maybe slow down slightly and find your rhythm but don’t stop! After a few minutes you will feel better trust me!
Track your progress
To take your running to a whole new level and create great motivation to keep going, track your runs. The miles you ran and how fast. Tracking progress is very important to keep progressing in any sport.
Carbohydrates are your friend in the running world. These are your primary fuel source to burn during long state cardio. Before a run make sure you eat a good amount of carbs 24 hours before. This will ensure your muscles glycogen stores are full. 2 hours before your run a small snack such as banana on bread with some honey would be great. If you opt to run fasted, such as in the morning before breakfast. You could slip on some BCAA’s to avoid your body being a catabolic state (muscle breakdown). But, it is important if you have run fasted to refuel your body ASAP. I wouldn’t particularly suggest energy drinks before or during your run due to they can cause a huge sugar rush and crash which is a nightmare on a long run. For me I would have a pre-workout shake with a mixture of complex and simple carbohydrates for a sustainable fuel source.
Overlays and windbreakers
Common Running Questions
What’s better outside or treadmill?
Each have their own pros and cons. To put it short. If the weather is bad then you might want to get your miles in on the treadmill although there is something great about running in the rain. Apart from weather and personal preference, Running outdoors is more practical for daily activities, although you can’t watch TV while doing it like you can on the treadmill! The treadmill is infact less impactful on your joints and has a less injury risk due to the even constant terrain. So, if you have a knee problem maybe the treadmill would be more suited.
Is running going to ruin my knees?
Everyone has different views on this topic. If you have problems with your knees, then yes it may cause issues. But as a normal healthy human person getting into running will in fact make your knees, joints and ligaments stronger!
Why do I get a stitch?
We’ve all had one! But what causes it? The reason behind the stitch is still not completely clear but researchers believe it is due to reduced blood flow to the diaphragm which causes it to cramp. If you get a stitch the best way to deal with it is to slow down slightly and raise both arms straight above your head.
Is running everyday good?
Exercising regularly is very beneficial but a balanced training program should incorporate a few rest days during the week whether that’s running, weight training or anything you need to give time for your body to recover along with your central nervous system (CNS). I would say always listen to your body. If you are tired and drained don’t kill yourself. A big lesson in any kind of fitness activity is learning to understand your body. If your perform any activity without being 100% recovered there is an increased chance of injury so be careful!
When does running become fun?
This Is a funny question as I know how it feels to be a new runner and just find it a chore to run and your feel out breath after a a few minutes! The truth is when you first start running it’s going to be hard! You may only be-able to get a few miles before your legs become like jelly! Be patient and keep on building your cardio-vascular endurance, strength and running distance! It will become a lot easier and enjoyable as you progress.