Usually, you and I would be in the same boat of not enjoying the “sport” of running. I’ve caught myself saying constantly in the past, “The only time you’d find me running is if someone is chasing me to hurt me.” Surprisingly, situational depression will make you think twice about how you feel on jogging or walking, or at least that’s what it did for me!
Now, you don’t need to be in sad-mode to get out and jog or run–it’s just something that your body and health may thank you for later. So, to get you started, here are a few tips to help along the process to maybe, who knows, your first 5K:
1. Train in the right sneakers:
If you’re going commit to running fairly often, you want to make sure you have the right kicks. Your feet need to be taken care of, and if you don’t have the appropriate “feet suit” (as I like to call ’em), then you could be putting stress on the wrong parts of your soles. My advice? Check out a running store and get your gate analyzed on a treadmill.
2. Stride in the right gear:
No, I’m not saying to go buy out all of your local sporting goods store and splurge just because you wanna pick up a new habit. But you need the essentials: good bottoms that won’t make you chafe, a sweat wicking top, and some great sports bras. Once race day approaches, make sure to go for a run in the clothes you plan on wearing to test out how they feel. The last thing you want is a tank that rubs you in the wrong places.
3. Fuel up:
Just like those pasta parties back in high school, you’ve earned some extra carbs for your big race. My go-to pre-race breakfast is a Bagel Thin with peanut butter, so I can get in both carbs and some protein. Plus, it keeps me satisfied.
4. Be strategic:
Don’t give everything you’ve got at the very beginning only to tire out by the second mile. Make sure to pace yourself and, if available, use water stations provided along the route.
5. Keep your eye on the prize:
This is your FIRST race. I understand the desire to be a little speedy, but your best doesn’t necessarily mean you have to shatter world records. Keep focused on finishing, even when it may feel like you can’t run anymore. The goal should be to cross the finish line and be proud of yourself, no matter how long it takes.