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Running is one of the simplest ways to exercise.  Plus you do not need any fancy equipment to get started. What do you need?  Good pair of running shoes and you are good to go! It doesn’t require a great deal of technique at first, and it’s not age or gender-biased. It’s also a great way to burn calories fast. Running can burn nearly 600 calories per hour for a 150lb person.

Why start running?  
Research has proven there are tremendous benefits to running, including reducing your risk of illnesses such as colds, flu and even heart disease.

Running is a great form of aerobic exercise for your heart and lungs.  Carrying your body’s weight will get your heart rate up fast, which beats sitting on a machine. Because you have to carry your own body, running can help increase bone density, which helps prevent osteoporosis and osteopenia.  Running also helps you improve your fitness and stamina.

Starting any new exercise routine can feel overwhelming, so instead of starting running in the dark, it’s helpful to learn some basic information about running first...

  1. Getting Started - Before you take your first steps, there are some important basics you should know. Although running is a healthy activity, you should get medical clearance before you start a running program, as with any exercise program.
  2. Shoes - Visit a running-specific store to have your gait and foot assessed when buying your running shoes.  Well-trained staff can assist you in picking the right shoe for your foot and your specific needs, which will keep your feet happy and reduce risk of injury.
  3. Start slow - Don’t try to run a marathon if you’ve never run around the block. Start with short distances every other day to get your body conditioned to the new activity and stresses on your body. One good rule of thumb is the 10% rule. Don’t increase your total weekly mileage by more than 10%, or increase any one run by more than 10% at a time.
  4. Knowing the distance - You don’t need a fancy watch to know how far you’ve gone. There are many free Internet mapping options to allow you to map and track your runs. 
  5. Running Clubs - while running is considered an individual sport, many people find running with a buddy or a group of people more enjoyable. Plus, it makes staying committed to your new fitness pursuit easier.  Check out what clubs are in your local area. 
  6. Stay interested - Try signing up for a small race or charity event to keep your eye on the prize. It usually takes three weeks to form a habit, so sign up for something four to six weeks in advance to keep you focused and maintain interest in your new running regime. After that, you can set yourself a new goal of a faster time or a longer distance. 
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Personal Training
Exercise & Fitness
April, 2012
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