Fitness Articles

So You Want to Be a Runner?

Get Started on the Right Foot


Be the Tortoise, Not the Hare. Once again, discipline is essential for a new runner. It is so easy to get caught up in the need to run fast; but as a newbie, running slowly will actually build endurance, which, in part, will allow for faster times in the weeks and months ahead. Only after you have a solid foundation should you look at adding in speed drills. With speed comes a higher risk of injury; this is when listening to your body is crucial.

No Pain, No Gain? Not Quite. Running should not cause pain. Let me repeat that for emphasis: Running should not cause pain. Soreness is to be expected when trying something new, but you should NEVER run through pain. Doing so could lead to bigger issues down the road. It is always better to take a few days off and allow the body to heal than to keep pressing on. As my running coach told me when I first started, "Your goal is to be a life-long runner, not just a once-in-a-lifetime runner."

You Need Strength to be a Runner. Strength training is a huge asset to runners. Building upper body strength will help stabilize the shoulders, while doing lower body workouts will help stabilize the knees and hips. In addition, strength training helps build those all-important glycogen reserves needed for running.

Enjoy the Journey. So many people run just to reach a goal, whether it is the 5K they signed up for or another; but for me the challenge is simply being able to run, which is something I never imagined myself doing before I began my journey to a healthier me almost four years ago.

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About The Author

Nancy Howard Nancy Howard
Nancy is an avid runner and health enthusiast. A retired pediatric nurse, she received her bachelor's degree in nursing from Texas Woman's University and is also a certified running coach and ACE-certified personal trainer.

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