Running is a fantastic way to get fit and tone up – it’s free, you can do it anywhere and to get started all you need is a pair of running shoes. If you’ve never been a runner, trust me, you can be one. I was always a terrible runner until I discovered it was something that I could build on and work towards at my own pace. I now love running and have completed a few half marathons and a full marathon too!
Sovereign has embarked on a campaign to help New Zealander’s take charge of their health and wellbeing. I can’t think of a better way to boost your fitness and wellbeing than getting moving. So in the spirit of keeping well, here’s 5 key tips for beginner runners to get outdoors and start running, whether it’s as a part of a triathlon event or just for your own fitness.
1. Start SLOW
One of the biggest mistakes made when starting out with running is trying to do your first runs too fast. I think that’s why a lot of people think they hate running – they go way too fast and feel awful! Starting slowly lets you build up your fitness so your muscles adapt. When you start out running, aim for your pace to be at a level where you can still talk. After a week or so, you’ll be able to pick up the pace and go harder.
2. Get a plan
Having a plan to get into running makes it a little more structured and can help you find the balance between not doing enough and pushing too hard. There are lots of plans on the internet to help you start running. One that has been really popular is the try couch potato to 5km programme which you can get here.
3. Get some good shoes
A pair of good running shoes helps ensure your run is comfortable and your feet and joints are well cushioned from the impact of running. They can also help avoid injury. Because we all have different shaped feet and running styles, head to your local sports store for some personalised advice on getting the right pair of shoes for you.
4. Use a running app or watch
Ok so this isn’t a must, but for me this has really helped me become a better runner and stay motivated to keep up my fitness. Apps or sports watches help you track your progress over time as well as providing motivation and feedback during your run.
My favourites are the Nike Running App, Nike Sports Watch and I’ve also used Magellan Echo which is good. I use the Nike Running App the most, and used it for my marathon. It uses GPS to track your run and it also has plans and goals for you to work towards if you want, such as running a 5k all the way through to a marathon. There’s a running coach too. When you’ve finished your run, you get an encouraging word about your run which is always nice! Best thing is it’s free to download and use.
5. Remember to take rest days
When you’re excited about getting into a plan with exercise, it can be tempting to skip your rest days. But rest days are vital to give your body time to rest and let your muscles grown stronger. A day off allows your muscles to replenish their glycogen stores (your stored glucose to fuel your runs), builds up your muscle strength and helps fight fatigue.
Alongside keeping fit, eating well and managing stress, private health insurance can help you take charge of your health and wellbeing by giving you access to top quality health care. To find out more about Sovereign’s Private Health Insurance, visit their website to see how you can #lifetakecharge.
This post was made possible thanks to Sovereign Health Insurance.