Running isn’t something that comes easily. Most people find it terrible when they first start. Myself included.
My first run was in high school with my dad. I could barely make it to the top of the hill. But that isn’t the only beginning to running I remember. Sometimes we fall in and out of love with this crazy mixed up sport. Track ruined it for me. I stopped running till Junior year in college. I was active otherwise, but the thought of running did not sound appealing in the least.
My 2nd time with running started when I saw many of my fellow fitness instructors running races. Half marathons, marathons, and even just picking up a stray 5k here and there. Guess what? I had to join in! In 2009 I registered for the Disney Princess Half Marathon.
Those first few months of getting my body back into running shape were tough. I won’t sugar coat it. But crossing the finish line for the first time made it oh so worth it.
Here I am today, ready to run my 10th half and the Disney Princess for a 2nd time! Almost 5 years later and running is still something that I love. Sometimes it’s hard to get my butt out there. Sometimes I curse it when my IT bands are tight. But I always come back to it as my favorite, most loved sport.
So how can you learn to love running?
1. Find a reason to get out there – don’t just run for weight loss or because your friend is running a race. Find YOUR reason. How does it make you feel? How will being a runner make you feel? How will it become a part of your life?
2. Get fit – not in the “get buff” sense, but in the get your feet fit for a good pair of running shoes. Running can be a cheap sport, but don’t go cheap on your running shoes. Most places like Road Runner Sports, Charm City Run, Pacers and others will have a treadmill to look at your gait and what shoes will work best. Trust me, best investments I make for running. When my feet are happy, I’m a happy runner
3. Find some motivation – whether it be a favorite route, a podcast or music you enjoy listening to, a friend to run with, just find something to get yourself out there regularly. It might be a struggle somedays, which is why having these things will help get you over the hump.
4. Sign up for a race – yep, bite the bullet, and just do it. 5K, 10K, Half, Full…doesn’t matter, just find a local race and have fun. But find a proper training plan to avoid injuries. Most of us can’t just race willy nilly without the fear of injury – myself included.
5. Learn to appreciate it for what it is – running is so basic…just one foot in front of the other. Just getting your body out there and moving. Learn to be grateful for it and just allow yourself to breathe in some fresh air and relax.
Are you a regular runner? If so, how did you learn to love running?