When you’re walking down the street and you see a jogger running at a pace you didn’t even know possible, barely breaking a sweat, it’s so easy to be bombarded with the thought that if you aren’t running like that you aren’t running ‘right’.
Well, I’m here to tell you three things.
Firstly, never compare yourself to somebody else, you may be in the gym and see a colossal bodybuilder bicep curling 40kg. You must be thinking how can someone do that? The important thing is to understand that, relative to your body mass, you could make similar strength gains if you went from 10kg to 13. You should be able to look at role models and feel inspired, without having to feel like you are competing with them.
Secondly, when you’re jogging in the local park and the other jogger has just lapped you for the 2nd time it may make you think you’re ‘unhealthy’ or ‘unfit’. What you don’t see is their planning, dieting, and reason for training to get to that point. Of course, you don’t have to do all those things to be successful at running but it will make it easier! Don’t assume that people are naturally gifted in this area because chances are, they aren’t, and they probably found it difficult to begin with too.
Lastly, it’s so easy to get lost thinking about the grand scheme of your objectives and it may be overwhelming. Personally, I have found that this can be avoided if you set a goal of what you want to achieve and by when. If you take one step at a time, you will get the result you want. If setbacks occur or you slightly miss your ideal date, don’t think you’ve failed because that’s okay. You’ve tried more than most people and that’s something to be proud of.
Figure out the clothes you want to wear! Maybe matching? Basic? Or that new purchase? I like to wear a light upper body thermal, some shorts, my comfortable running shoes, and a top that goes over it. Thermals are great for unpredictable weather or if you’re just feeling chilly! Wear whatever you’re most comfortable in, its all relative to you.
Find a location (preferably flat) that you like the look of. We have loads of great locations to go running, my favourite is near a horse paddock, I always end my run by the horses as it’s a nice refreshing end.
Once you’re comfortable with a location, start with a warm-up. This can range anywhere from 2 to 10 minutes. You can find easy warm up routines on YouTube by searching ‘full-body warm-up’ or ‘quick leg warm-up’. For myself, I can’t get enough of Pamela Reif’s Warmups!!!
You’ve done the prep/planning, now it’s time for the fun part, training! If you’re unsure on the appropriate pace that works for you I would recommend running at a fast pace to start with, then slow down so you are able to run for longer. Throughout the jog, you’ll become mentally and physically fatigued so don’t worry if your pace decreases further.
If you feel like pushing yourself you can jog for longer, or reduce the amount of time you walk for. 30 – 60 minutes would be a good amount of time to jog for. Don’t worry if you need to stop sooner as you’ve already taken giant steps into achieving something positive.
Once you’ve finished your walk/jog end with a warm-down. This can be the same as your previous warmup or a different one entirely. If you feel anxious about doing this around other people you can always do it at your house before and after.
Everyone has to start somewhere so don’t worry if you don’t meet your expectations the 1st, 2nd or even 3rd time. You’ll learn from your experiences and become better at what you want to do!