Recently, I have had a lot of people reach out asking me this question... "So like how do you run? I can't do it! I don't even know how or where to get started."
They are right. Running isn't as simple as it looks especially for someone just getting started. The matter of the fact is that in life our bodies are constantly changing and so is the way we run. BUT, to get started you need to find your balance and be patience with the process.
Being patient with the process means understanding that becoming a better runner will take time. I am sorry to harsh on your goals but in 4 years from now you won't go from learning to run to an Olympic podium but there are very realistic goals that you can accomplish in a few years for example; running a marathon or running under 20:00 minutes in a 5K. My point is - for someone who is just starting out you first have to take into consideration that running is like starting anything. At the beginning you'll be a beginner but the more you practice the better or faster you'll get.
Time to get into the gist of starting out. Here's a checklist of things you'll need:
1. Running Shoes - "a pair that isn't more than 2 years old" (see below)
2. Proper clothing - polyester tops or anti-chafe tights or shorts. Sport socks if you have them (cotton is rotten) and blisters will make running uncomfortable
3. The Right Attitude - Leave that negativity in the house when you head out. Relax your mind!
4. A phone/run-watch/stopwatch - to measure time/distance/etc
5. Music - Throw on your go-to workout playlist, what can go wrong?
**What happens with older running shoes is that the foam-ages overtime and becomes rock solid which commonly causes shin splits or knee discomfort. Running shoes should be replaced on an annual basis if you are wearing them at least 3 times per week.**
OK, now that you have your things to get started lets draw out a plan from ground-zero. To start out, you'll want to equal your time running and walking to get a feel for where your cardiovascular fitness is.
Week 1: (2-3 Runs)
Do 10 reps of 1 min run and 1 min walk (for this you'll need a phone or watch to measure the time for each interval) If you are feeling great after 5 reps, extend the running interval to 90 seconds (1:30) or add an extra minute but keep the rest the same.
Week 2: (2-3 Runs)
Do 6-7 reps of 3 min run and 1 min walk (Again, keeping the rest the same but extending the period we are running for. During these three minutes try to get comfortable, find a groove where you aren't overthinking running.)
Week 3: (3-4 Runs)
Do 5 reps of 5+ min run and 1 min walk (Get comfortable with your pace. You should practice and focus your breathing during the rest periods - thru nose out mouth)
Week 4: (3-4 Runs)
Now try running 3 or 4 reps of running 1-Kilometer with again 1 min walk after each rep. Time yourself on each rep and compare to the others you ran during your run. Ideally, you want the last rep of this to be your fastest so you train your body to operate at a faster pace when you are already tired or fatigued.
As these training weeks go by, you’ll notice that you will be able to run longer and farther. Eventually you’ll be able to run 3K-5KM without stopping. When that day comes, be proud! You've successfully learned to run! You can now progress your running time by adding five minutes to your duration or distance every 2-weeks. For instance, running 25 minutes three times per week for 2-3 weeks and then progressing to 30 minutes.
We wish you the best of luck starting out your training!!