The hardest mile is the walk to your doorstep off your couch.
Before the run: Invest in a good shoe (need not be expensive). Get your pronation analysis done at a shoe store near you.
Things to remember:
- Start slow: Each time when you run its very important to start slow. Your muscles should understand that you are getting into a run. If you try running at 6-7 min/mile at the start of the run you won’t go more than a few 100 meters.
- Accelerate: Increase your speed steadily at a constant pace and in a comfortable way. Don’t run at the same speed throughout. This would cause you to plateau out.
- Build Distance: Build distance over time.Day 1: Run 1 mile
Day 2: Run 2 miles
Day 3: Run 3 miles……
always make sure to run a little more than the previous day.
- Perseverance and Effort: Set a target in mind and do it whatever it takes. Remember its all in your mind. Mental strength is more important than physical strength for all long distance events.
- Rest: Don’t strain your muscles. Its important you provide 2-3 days rest every week in between your runs. Muscles develop during the rest period.
- Hydrate: Stay hydrated always. Drink plenty of water. This will prevent cramps and damage to your muscles.
- Group runs: You will find more motivation if you run with a group of people than running alone. And group runs will always make you aim higher.
- Music. podcast etc: Its always good to have entertainment while running, since it can get boring after a while. I personally don’t like technology with me when running, but its your choice.
Remember as a beginner in running, it’s important that you concentrate less on your speed and work more on improving your distance (stamina). With stamina comes speed, eventually.
The very first ‘step’ is to go to a running specialty store, and have them fit you for the right shoes for you. Try to find a store that is not affiliated with a brand, because even though all brands make shoes for your footstrike and stride, not all will feel right on you. This is the single most important thing to avoid injuries.
Next, if possible, just head out the door for somewhere between 20 and 30 minutes. If that’s not possible in your neighborhood, find an interesting place nearby. When you start, try to run as slowly as possible. That is more difficult than you would think, but the slower you can run initially, the further you can go, and the quicker you’ll build stamina. When you’re tired, walk until you have your breathing back to normal, then run again. Repeat until you’ve been out for your 20–30 minute time period. Don’t worry about how much you walk, just try to have fun with it.
Initially, do this every other day if possible, and maybe go for a casual walk on some or all of the other days. Once your able to run the full time/distance, you can add days and/or distance. Don’t worry about speed, that will come automatically as your stamina increases.