Want to Start Running? How to Do it The RIGHT Way
Anyone can run and you can, too. Really. But it will be a lot more enjoyable if you start running the right way. Follow this advice and 7-week walk-run plan outlined by writer Dimity McDowell. Seven weeks may seem like a long time, but just think: At the end, you’ll be able to run for 30 minutes straight. Thirty minutes!
Stuff you need
Shoes Expect to shell out at least $75 for a good running shoe. Sneakers that don’t meet the needs of your foot type and running style can lead to Achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis (heel pain), knee pain, and shin splints, says Stephen M. Pribut, D. P. M., clinical assistant professor of surgery at the George Washington University Medical Center.
Need some shopping help? Check out the WH Shoe Finder for reviews of the latest models or head to your local running store, where the employees are generally more helpful than those at sporting goods stores.
Sports bra According to one study, running can cause your boobs to fly up and down as much as eight inches. (Ouch!) A sports bra that holds each breast in a separate cup will reduce bounce and support better than a shelf bra. When trying one on, run in place, do jumping jacks, and swing your arms in circles to test how supportive it will be.
Stopwatch Any watch with a start and stop button will do!
Follow this plan from running coach Christine Hinton three times per week on non-consecutive days. Go slow. Really slow. Repeat a week if you don’t feel ready to move up. When you’re able to run consistently for at least 30 minutes, you can start adding more distance.
Begin and end each session with a five-minute walk.
Week 1: Run 2 min, walk 3 min; repeat 6 times
Week 2: Run 3 min, walk 3 min; repeat 5 times
Week 3: Run 5 min, walk 2 min; repeat 4 times
Week 4: Run 7 min, walk 3 min; repeat 3 times
Week 5: Run 8 min, walk 2 min; repeat 3 times
Week 6: Run 9 min, walk 1 min; repeat 3 times
Week 7: Run 30 minutes
After you’ve been running for at least six weeks, add intervals to continue building fitness and shedding pounds.
Tell us: If you’re beginning to run, how’s it going? If you already run, what advice would you give to someone who’s just starting out?
photo: Nicola Majocchi