How to Start Your Running Journey
Like any habit, running is a tough one to start. It means shaking up your routine, inserting an exhausting exercise into a time when you might normally be sleeping, and then trying to convince yourself that it's fun. Of course it's worth it, but I totally get why people struggle to get started. So here are a few tips to get you on the path to becoming a running regular.
1. Pick a Race and Sign Up
This might seem like you are putting the cart before the horse, but in my experience the best way to get motivated and stay motivated for more than a week is to sign up for a race and train in anticipation of that race. It gives you an end goal that is within reach and keeps you focused on that finish line. Look up what races are happening nearby within the next few months and pick one that seems challenging but doable. Most new runners start with a 5k, but pick whatever race your heart desires!
2. Find the Right Gear
Shoes, shorts, leggings, socks, sports bras, sweat wicking shirts, headphones. Once you have these you are good to go. Don't start with anything too fancy, wait to spend the big bucks until you have a few more miles under your belt and know your running form and preferred clothes and gadgets. I personally run in Nike shoes and Lululemon clothes almost exclusively due to the high functionality and because both brands make items that get me excited to test drive them out on the road. Oh, and Lululemon makes the best running socks I have ever experienced, those are definitely worth the money. However I still haven't bought a Garmin watch. You don't need anything fancy to get started, just find gear that gets the job done and upgrade as needed.
I LOVE running to a good playlist. There is no better feeling for me than tackling a hill along to a bumpin' song. I will usually get a playlist together on Spotify beforehand and sometimes switch it around based on my mood. You are welcome to follow me on Spotify or just follow my running playlist aptly named RUNNING LIKE I'M ON FIRE
4. Stop Overthinking It
OK I know this is not just me... back when I was getting started running I would set my alarm early the night before, wake up, and spiral into overthinking paralysis. I would overthink my miles, distance, speed, outfit, etc until I had lost 20 minutes and had to skip my run altogether to get to work on time. A huge way I overcame this was through visualization. I would visualize myself getting up, getting my clothes and shoes on, and walking out the door within 5 minutes. When I visualized this I found I was able to get out the door WAY faster.
5. Visualize Race Day
It is easy to lose motivation after a few weeks of running, even when you know there is a race looming in your future. To motivate yourself throughout training visualize yourself crossing the finish line on race day. Picture how it will feel to run through the crowd, tons of people cheering for you, and high fives all around when you are done. Visualizing exercises like this always keeps me on track with training and helps me push through those really tough moments of a workout. Imagining the finish line reminds me why I am there, what my goal is, and that the work is worth it.
If this article motivated you to lace up and get running, you can download my FREE 4 Week 5K Training Plan today by just subscribing to my newsletter below!