Top Running Tips for Seasoned and Beginners Alike

Top  Running Tips for Seasoned and Beginners Alike
Have you recently discovered the many benefits running offers but need help getting started? Are you a seasoned runner looking to refresh the basics? Or perhaps, you were a seasoned runner but want to get back into it. Whether you just started running today or ten years ago, It's easy to fall into a detrimental running habit without knowing it. Remembering some running basics will help you stay on track, prevent injury, and make your run more enjoyable.

1. Resting is as Important as the Running

There's no one-size fits for runners. The nuances on how much rest and recovery each of us will need will differ depending on age, level of participation, and development—but just as moving our body is essential, so is ensuring you understand how to rest and recover between runs.
We create tiny tears within our muscles when we do intense workouts like weightlifting or running. Over time, our muscles heal, and they grow bigger and stronger. But this process cannot happen unless we rest and recover, not during the exercise.
To see improvements in your runs and for your body to continue doing what you want, you must give it enough rest to repair itself. That means making time out from running and ensuring you sleep well at night.

2. Plan on Running Smarter, not Harder

While it may be tempting to hit the ground running (pun intended), you shouldn't worry too much about speed and distance as a beginner or a runner getting back into it. We recommend starting slow and steady, incorporating a combination of walking and jogging during the first few weeks. This is the best way to avoid injury and build your stamina and confidence as a newbie runner.
When you have figured out a pace that works well for you, you can switch your focus to distance. A good rule of thumb is to ensure you don't increase your running distance by more than 10 percent weekly.

3. Never Skip the Warm Up

When we've been resting or seated for a long while, our muscles can contract and shorten due to the position of our bodies. When we run without warming or stretching these muscles up, we risk injury as a pre-stretched muscle can handle and resist stress easier than an unstretched one.
Does that mean you should stretch every time before a run? Yes. It's essential to learn and do dynamic stretching. Dynamic stretching focuses on repetitive movements that gradually increase motion, circulation, and muscle length. For example, arm swings start small and gradually increase to become larger but remain within your normal range. Here are a few suggested dynamic stretches for warm-up:
  • Side lunge
  • Glute and piriformis activation
  • Arm swings
  • Bent-knee forward swing
  • Straight-leg lateral swing

4. Strengthen your Core and Keep It Strengthened

Maintaining a solid core will help you control your body alignment by stabilizing your body and improving your form.
Proper body alignment reduces injury while increasing energy efficiency. The front of the hip and torso should be slightly forward as the foot lands directly beneath you. The back of your head should be aligned with your spine. To achieve proper alignment, keep your eyes ahead, not down, to the side, or constantly turn your head to look behind you. The center of your body should be over the leg as the foot touches the pavement.
Fatigue and poor posture can cause you to slump, creating misalignment and increasing the risk of injury. Further, improper alignment can decrease your energy level during your run. By adding a core workout to your running routine, you will see improvements in your time and how you feel.

5. Invest in Comfort and Good Shoes

The comfiest but most supportive running shoes will help you reach your goals and ensure you do not injure yourself. Additionally, if your running shoes begin looking worn out or flattening, it's important not to keep wearing them and to change them out.
In general, you should have a new pair of running shoes every 300 to 500 miles run because the midsole cushioning on most shoes loses resiliency and stop absorbing shock.
If you've ever worn an uncomfortable piece of clothing before, you no doubt know how distracting and annoying that can be. Imagine how that same discomfort might feel when running, especially as a beginner who will no doubt already be uncomfortable. Invest in good athletic or athleisure gear designed for jogging or running, and ensure the material is breathable and moisture-wicking.
Discomfort will discourage you from trying to run, and old shoes can lead to injuries.

6. Use a Running App; Track your Goals

Management consultant, Peter Drucker, believed that what we measure improves. This idea is used in business, but we think it also applies to your fitness goals. Whether you want to shed a few pounds or run a half marathon, tracking your progress is crucial. Thanks to smartphone apps, this process has never been more straightforward. If you're starting, we recommend trying an app created specifically for brand-new runners, like Couch to 5K. It uses interval training, and you must commit to working out 30 minutes per day, three days per week, over nine weeks.
Overall, apps are an excellent tool to map your route and track the miles you've run and calories burned to keep you motivated every step of the way. If you're looking for more apps, check out our blog article: Top Apps for Fitness or Running at Any Levels.

7. Never Ignore Your Body

This is perhaps the most critical advice we can give any new runner reading this post: never run through the pain. If you start to experience any pain in your shin bone, Achilles tendon, hip, or ankle that is outside the norm, then using the rest, ice, compression, and elevation technique, known commonly as RICE, should do so the trick. However, if the pain persists, it's time to visit your doctor.
Another great way to avoid injury is to incorporate rest days into your running routine. Try to space your runs evenly each week (giving a day's rest in between), so your body has enough time to recover. During these "off" days, you can stay active by incorporating low-impact crossing training activities like yoga or swimming.
Did you enjoy our seven running tips for beginners and seasoned runners? Make sure to join our community on Facebook or Instagram for extra motivation on your health and fitness journey.

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