The reason why running is a preferred mode of keeping fit and healthy is that not only is it a sure way to get lean and healthy but running outdoors can be very therapeutic especially when surrounded by great scenery. Running is not just about getting into your trainers and off the road you go. You need to learn a few tricks of the trade that will see you reap maximum benefits from your running.
We are all athletes!
The first thing you need to affirm before you ever start running is that we are all athletes in our own right, it is just that some of us are advanced in training and experience while some of us are starting training for the first time. The moment you look at yourself as an athlete, you are going to run exactly like one and you will now be running in a way that can actually see you clinch a ‘trophy’ – the trophy in our case being the ultimate goal for running, that is, to lose weight or to stay healthy. With time, you may actually find yourself training for marathons.
Don’t run by the mile
One rookie mistake that most of us make is to rate ourselves by the number of miles we have covered. It doesn’t matter if you can run 10 miles, the question is, how long does it take you to cover those ten miles? Start thinking in minutes instead of miles and push your body to cover each mile within the shortest time possible and you will be running like a pro.
Get a bigger size
Your running shoes are one of the most important purchases you will ever have to make reason being, a good pair of running shoes will ensure you don’t hurt your back. When buying running shoes, get a size bigger and avoid pointy shoes at all costs and your feet will be grateful for saving them from pain.
Relaxation is key
Running is not like boxing or weight lifting where all your muscles should be alert. No, when running, loosen up and feel the miles. Loosen up your jaw and let it hang loose and let your shoulders lose. Once in a while shake your hands to stay relaxed and really just take in the surrounding and enjoy your run.
Water, water and more water
Whether you are running in summer or winter, hydrating your body with water is very important. All your bodily functions rely on water for them to operate optimally. Your tendons, joints and ligaments need lubrication and this is provided by water. Water is also important for the transport of blood to all your major organs and also for sweating. You can therefore not afford to take less than eight glasses of water every single day.
The secret to becoming fit and staying fit and healthy is to enjoy what you do. Every morning when you strap on your running shoes, you should be very excited at what you are about to do. Let running be your fun play and before you know it you will have some very impressive muscles.
Most runners carry along energy bars which are great and portable sources of fuel. Remember that fat will slow down your digestion and this is the last thing we are looking for. An ideal energy bar is one containing 4 grams or less of fat for every 230 calories.
Pay attention to your body
This is very important for every runner. Your body will let you know when it needs food and when it needs to stop. If you wake up feeling really tired and listless, a run is probably not the best thing, otherwise you may start looking at running as a compulsory and tedious chore which is not what we want. Allow yourself to relax and if you are feeling much better in the evening, then go for your run.
Whole, natural and nutritious foods
Diet is very important when you are physically engaging your body. Nutritious foods will help your body repair all the torn tendons and also recover from the run. Only eat whole and natural foods that have not been processed to the point of being stripped off all nutrition. Experiment with your food and make it a point to eat something new every week. This way you will provide your body with a variety of healthy foods.
Running is fun and you are always in control, just get your iPod and hit the ground running! So what other tips do you have when it comes to hitting the track? We would love to hear your ideas, so be sure to send a good banter our way in the comments section below!