5 Step Guide to Help You Get Started With Running.

January 12, 2021

Have you ever wanted to start running but been stopped by thoughts such as….. “I am not a runner.” “I have never been a runner.” “I don’t even know where to start.” “I am going to look stupid.” “I don’t want to get injured. “

These are all very common concerns, so we have developed our five step guide to help you move past these and grab the life that you want with two hands.

There is no denying running even 5 minutes or 10KM or 1-2 times a WEEK can give you:

  • 50% less chance of dying from a cardiovascular disease
  • Improved mental health and well being
  •  +3y Reduced risk of stroke, arteriosclerosis and thrombosis
    45-r increased life expectancy
  • Lower rate of hip and knee osteoarthritis
  • Cartilage enhancing effects (in knee and hip osteoarthritis)
  • No increase in osteoarthritis symptoms for people who already have it

This must be the BEST trade deal in the history of trade deals, maybe ever!

The beginning of your running journey can be both exciting and overwhelming; no matter if your start line is the couch or the gym. It can be tempting to go too fast and too far or over do it on the first day and give up – follow these 5 steps to start running safely.
Take your mark, get set, go!

1. A Good pair of running shoes.

a. Check if your trainers need to be replaced with the ‘dead shoe test’ –Regularly assessing if the cushioning capabilities of the shoe is intact, is an important habit to get into. Running in dead shoes can lead to an increased risk of injury to knees and pain in the heel and the  ball of foot.

Hold your shoe at the toe and at the heel. By placing pressure with your thumbs up through the center of the bottom of the shoe bend the shoe back on itself. If the shoe bends in the middle with little resistance then the shoe is DEAD.

b. If you need to buy new ones, try them on first. Look at these 3 factors:

i. Fit – 1cm or one thumb width from your longest toe to the end of the shoe and  the sides of your feet aren’t bulging out over the sole
ii. Comfort – Try on a few pair of shoes and walk/jog around the store and test out with these movements: single leg hops, fast feet & high knees.
iii. Suitability – check your orthotics fit (if applicable) and check if it has been engineered to be neutral/supportive/cushioned/lightweight and whether this fits your feet and needs. If you’re unsure, ask the shoe store clerk or check with your podiatrist

2. Pick a race or set a date.

We recommend a 5KM or 10KM race. These distances are a good starting point as they are generally attainable to the beginner runner with a moderate level of training. Generally they are also generally run frequently and in a vast number of locations. If you don’t have one in mind check out https://www.runningcalendar.com.au/

i. If you have to pay for it, do it now to hold yourself accountable
ii. If you want to do a free 5KM, check out a Parkrun held every Saturday morning at your local park (https://www.parkrun.com.au/). Set a Saturday that is approximately 8 weeks away as your ‘race day’
iii. Just pick a day and don’t change it

3. Choose a training plan.

Keep it simple and achievable within your time frame. Here are a few we like:

a. (Free Apps) Couch to 5KM (App store https://apps.apple.com/au/app/couch-to-5k-runner/id448357306; Google store https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.c25k&hl=en_AU)
b. (Free )First Steps 5KM or 1mile from https://freerunningplans.com/
c. (Free) Hal Higdon’s 5K Programs with different entry levels (Walkers, Novice, Intermediate, Advanced) https://www.halhigdon.com/

4. Create a habit.

a. At the beginning of every week, write/add each training day for that week into your calendar. Set alarms.
b. Take it one training session at a time; focus on what you have to do in that session (e.g. walk for 5 mins -> jog for 10 mins). If you miss a session, reschedule it. If you miss it again, let it go and refocus with the next session.

5. Remember this very important fact:

Each training session is a building block, not a race. You want to build a strong and sturdy foundation in your running journey. If you overdo it every session, you’re busting those foundations and setting yourself up for injury. Be a builder not a buster.