How to Start Running

Have you ever thought, “I’d really like to run, but there’s no way I can run __ miles.” OR “I used to run all the time! But I haven’t in forever.”?

Fear not, I’m here for ya. Solidarity.

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When I started running my longest distance was a 5k obstacle race that I basically walked with my kind, patient runner roommate back in college, and that was a good four years before I decided to lace up with effort. In high school, I was a baton twirler who avoided running like the plague, so you get my drift. Not. A. Runner. SO, from a non-runner turned runner, the BEST advice I can give to someone who wants to start running for fun, for distance, for whatever your motivation is:

1. Start running, and run outside. Find a little neighborhood that you wish was yours if you’re like me and you live in the sketchy inner city. Find a park, run around the street, go to an old high school track and run bleachers. Wherever makes you a happy, go there and put one foot in front of the other.

2. Set attainable goals, even while running. Don’t lace up and expect to be the next Usain Bolt, and don’t lace up on your very first run thinking, “Five miles, baby. No stopping. They’re all mine.” NO! Setting distance goals are great, but start small and work from there. Don’t hurt yourself! If you’re running and you find yourself struggling, set small goals “I’m going to make it to the sign by that tree, and then I’ll walk for one minute.” Next time you run that route, I’ll bet you make it past the sign by the tree.

3. Probably most importantly, FIND GOOD RUNNING SHOES (and socks when you go longer). When I started running, I knew nothing. TMI, but my toenails soon turned black and were threatening to fall off, because apparently my hot pink Asics were too small. Evidently it’s not good to run in the same size shoe you normally wear- who knew?! Go to a running shop and ask to be fitted; you won’t regret it.

4. Be kind to yourself, and be patient for results. Some runs are going to suck, and others you’ll feel the full effects of the “runner’s high”. Sometimes you’ll probably hate running, but I promise if you stick with it, you will learn to appreciate what your body can do with just a little bit of time.

P.S. If you can find a community or friends to run with, it is SO.MUCH.EASIER. to not give up. If not, invite your friends to support you at the finish line after your training has paid off 🙂

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View from my run on Sunday’s “fall” Houston weather. No Garmin, no gadgets, and no headphones for this one. Just me, my two feet, and a beautiful afternoon = bliss.

Excitement from this week: I met my ladycrush, Melissa Hartwig, also known as a New York Times Best-Selling Author and the Headmistress of the Whole30. No. Big. DEAL.

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I went STRAIGHT from work to her book signing for “Food Freedom Forever”, where I may or may not have been one of the first three in line to meet her. Hi, I’m embarrassing.

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I will devote a post entirely to the Whole30 shortly after I complete another very soon, but if you’ve ever struggled with inflammatory conditions/diseases, heart problems, weight maintenance issues, fatigue, insomnia, depression, anxiety, chronic disease, or nothing at all except bad eating habits, you have 99 problems except a b*tch, or you have zero complaints at all, then I urge you to check out the Whole30, and I am not one to ever, ever recommend diets of any kind. But this program is amazeballs, and coming from a Crohnie that has tried literally everything, that’s sayin’ something. I’ll post about her new book after I finish reading it, but it’s great so far!

Hope you’re having a great day! Let me know if you hit the pavement! Any fellow Whole30-ers in the house?

Keep moving forward!

-Stacey

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