As spring approaches, more folks will be seen running, jogging, or walking. It is a wonderful outlet for many people to reduce stress, exercise the heart, and be invigorated. For myself, on the other hand, I am not a runner. I want to be. I dream to be, yet I fall short. I have signed up for, and participated in, 5K races in an effort to "be a runner."
A friend suggested I download an app, Couch to 5K. I took her advice, downloaded the app, and started working. All was going well, but my 5K date arrived before I finished all the prep work. For a novice, I didn't do too bad. I just simply didn't prepare.
With great enthusiasm, I started off strong with a light jog. As people passed me on both sides, I thought, "Well good, now they won't be in my way." After what seemed like hours, I noticed I had made it to the first kilometer! Great, I should take a break. My lungs were rebelling against me for this crazy stunt! I finished, but let's just say I didn't break any records! I did learn a lot though....running is hard work! At least for me.
When I ask runners if they enjoy running, most tell me they really don't enjoy it, but enjoy the RESULTS of running. A clear mind, weight control, and overall greater sense of awareness among other things, is what seems to drive runners. I must agree, after I caught my breath, I did feel accomplished. During the next two days following the race, I was aware of my physical inadequacies....
This spring, I'm signing up for at least one 5K. It's an event my whole family can participate in. The cost is low and can help a cause. This time, I plan to start preparation ahead of time. Here are a few tips I ran across (pun intended) in case anyone else is interested in running:
Consistency is the key. By running everyday, the body will improve its ability to burn fat. It also teachs the mind to work through challenges whether physical or mental.
Compete only with yourself
There will always be someone who is faster, so relax. Focus on making personal improvements.
Hang around with serious runners
Spend time with seasoned runners. It will be easier to pick up tidbits such as pace, routes, and what to wear.
Build some muscle
Strength training reduces the impact on joints which will allow for longer running distances.
Find a reason
Sign up to run for a cause. It will help with motivation in reaching goals while raising awareness for organizations that make a difference.
As spring approaches, there will be more races to choose from. There is a website available to find races anywhere in the country. Go to Running In The USA to find races at all levels.
Health-bite: prepare for the race