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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Starting a Running Program

In the beginning, running doesn't need to take a lot of time. In the first few months, try to establish a schedule. You are more likely to succeed if you find just a few minutes several times a week that you can commit to running than if you devise an elaborate and completely undoable schedule that will fall apart in a matter of days.

It's important at first to go for time rather than distance. It can be discouraging when you can't reach the distance you set for yourself. Just plan to get out of the house for a certain amount of time. Forget how far you go. Forget how fast you go. Just get out the door and stay out. For many people, twenty minutes of activity is a good place to begin. That does not mean running for twenty minutes. It means staying on your feet moving forward for twenty minutes. If you can run, run. If you can walk, walk. Do whatever you can, but keep moving forward. If it gets too hard, slow down.

A program of alternating running and walking is a good way to begin. The first week that may mean running for 5 minutes then walking for 10 to recover. In time, it may mean running for 10 minutes and walking 5, or running 10 and walking 1. The truth is, it doesn't matter. What matters is that you are getting out the door and learning to use your body as a means of transportation.

If you are patient, if you are persistent, if you are consistent, an amazing transformation will begin to occur. Your wonderfully adaptive body will begin to cooperate. It will happen in your own time and at your own pace, to be sure, but the transformation will take place.

Not only are you becoming a runner, but you are becoming a runner in training. You will have goals. You will have good days and bad days. You will have days when you can't wait to run and days when you will have to force yourself out the door. In other words, you will be just like all the other runners. Every day you will be trying to do your best. (1)

Click HERE for a 12 week beginner's training program.


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