So you’re new…
I’ve been there, hell I’m still there. These are some of the things I’ve done wrong and done right since I started my trek down the #NOTARUNNER path. Mostly wrong.
“That second piece of chocolate takes far less convincing to get you to eat it.”
#1 thing done wrong. Not getting the right shoes to start with. Shoes remove a considerable amount of ‘this sucks’ from running. The wrong shoes will give you hip pains, knee pains, back pains. Shoes are not something you can easily go cheap on or do it by yourself. Do you supinate? Pronate? Do you need control shoes? Are you a neutral? Are you a heel or toe striker? The answers to these questions strongly dictate the shoe that will be the least sucktastic for you. And it takes a lot of research and even then you can get it wrong. But you know what? Those skinny folks at the local runner stores typically have a lot of experience with a lot of shoes on a lot of people’s feet and they typically do a lot of research for their own shoes which they typically own a lot of. Bottom line is they’re typically a very happy to help, very knowledgeable crew. And go to the local store rather than some nation wide chain. You’re far more likely to get enthusiasts of the sport rather than folks just earning a pay check.
#2 thing done wrong. Don’t buy two shirts or shorts in your current size when you’re starting out running and you know you’re going to lose a fair amount of weight. One will get you through and then when you drop a size you can buy another one. Yes you’ll lose points in the fashion contest wearing the same gear each time but you’ll also not end up with gear that you wont’ ever use again as long as you’re running.
#3 thing done wrong. Make sure you properly lace and tighten your shoes. Speaking from experience coming back from a out and back with blood soaked shoes this is important.
#4 thing done wrong, well kind of depending on your disposable income level. Big name brand gear with big name brand logos on them aren’t necessarily any better. You’re paying for that name, the tv and print and online ads and apps that go with it. That doesn’t make it bad per se. But if you can buy 2 or 3 Champion tech shirts for the cost of 1 UnderArmor shirt… There’s nothing intrinsically wrong with going the UA or [insert other expensive lines of clothing]. But there’s also nothing intrinsically wrong with going with a lesser fashionable and subsequently lesser cost option.
#1 thing done right, set a training schedule and stick to it come hell, high water, work, weather, sickness. Not injury, don’t run injured if you can avoid it. But do everything you can to stay on schedule. When you miss a day it’s far easier to miss the second time and easier to miss the third time and then it’s been 3 weeks since you last ran. It’s much like dieting. That second piece of chocolate takes far less convincing to get you to eat it.
#2 thing done right, find the rightist shoe I could of the available options. You very likely have far more options in a shoe so enjoy your freedom of choice but choose wisely.
#3 thing done right, taking my time. At age 50 there’s very much more risk in engaging in physicality than at age 20. I’m using heart zone based training rather than pacing or distance. Pace and distance will come along naturally. But this way I can be, and feel, comfortable that I’m not going to blow out a ventricle. It took me 5 months to reach a 10k and you know what? It’s not a race. It’s a way to get healthier and have a chance to be around to see grand kids or at least see the kids become responsible adults capable of self sufficiency.
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