Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Wanna Run With Me?!

So centuries ago, I did an open forum to update my FAQ page. And the overwhelming question I received was "how do I bring all the boys to the yard?" "What are some tips for beginning runners?" And since so many of you asked, I decided this deserved a post of it's very own. I like to call this:

Ashley's Tips for New Runners:
(I feel like this should be hot pink and flashing but, blogger does have its limitations)

Necessary Tips: 
#1...and what I think is most important, Set a Goal. I do this for every run. Before I even walk out the door, I have a pre-determined distance or time goal. Decide before you hit the trails if you're going to go one mile, two or five. By having a goal, you have something to work towards and a set time you know when you can stop. Otherwise, chances are, when your body starts hurting or you start to feel short of breath, you'll stop. 

#2 - Get the right gear. And by that, I mean shoes. I love some bright workout clothes but if you're going to spend money on fitness, make sure it's on shoes. Your tennis shoes need to be at least a half to a whole size larger than what you normally wear (I know...it's painful, but just do it). If you're running on a treadmill, you'll want a lighter shoe. If you're hitting pavement, you'll want something with support. Also, very important, if you're running on a treadmill, set the treadmill to .5 to 1 incline at the least. Otherwise it's like you're running downhill and this is horrible news for your knees! 

#3 -Don't undo your work - Trust me, after huffing your way up a hill, you will be convinced you just burned 9 million calories. But, in reality, a woman of average weight will burn around 100 calories per 10-minute mile. So while your body does need fuel...save the cookies and cheesecake for a date night and reward yourself with fruits, nuts, or a single cup of low fat chocolate milk. Also, it's more important to fuel your body before a workout...post-workout-treats should be saved for really intense workouts. 

#4 - Mix it up. Cross-training by bike riding or taking a yoga class, can actually improve your runs and challenge your body. I find some of my best runs come after a two day hiatus. 

#5 - Streeeeeetch. Ya'll I suck at this. I skip this a lot due to time constraints (that pesky thing called work!) but it's so good for you. Studies have shown that stretching lends to increased range of motion and faster recovery. One thing to note since it is winter, don't stretch cold muscles. You need to engage in some sort of warm up activity before stretching (walking, jumping jacks, knee lifts). Cold, tights muscles are more prone to strains or tears. 

Fun Tips 
#5 - Find a Friend! I used to be a solo runner and I can tell you, some days there is nothing better than a run with your favorite songs blasting in your ears. But, if you'r having a hard time being committed, grab a pal. 60% of the time I make a 5:30am run is just because I know I have 5 other people waiting for me to get my booty out of bed. 

#6 - Celebrate your goals. Finally ran a whole mile? Broke your 2 mile streak? Celebrate! Don't be deterred by distance or speed runners. Meeting your goals and reaching your new personal best, is HUGE! Keep a journal to see how far you've come - you'll be amazed at how fast your body adjusts to exercise. 

So now that you have all these tips.....come run with me
.......see what I did there?



Jenna said...

These are all great tips! Setting a goal works best for me in terms of finishing through with a run. Whenever I decide to workout without a pace or distance in mind it usually turns into quitting after ten minutes or so.


meghan said...

These are great tips Ashley!! I love that running is taking off in the blog world and people are really jumping on board. Shoes I think are by far the most important thing on your list, and putting the treadmill on an incline is something that I've learned in the last two weeks. And I hate that I learned it. I used to go so fast on a flat incline and be so proud of myself...oops. And stretching is definitely my weak point too. I don't stretch very much after my runs. But I do foam roll or use The Stick! Do you have one of those? They're useful after long runs where your hips tighten up a little.

Brooke said...

These are really great tips! Sometimes I run my heart out - and then I stop for a week and it's the hardest thing ever to get back into it!

P!nky said...

Those are great great tips to share. Stretching and the right shoes are SOOOO important!

Will you be my running friend!?


Ashley said...

Awesome tips, Ash! Thanks for sharing :)

I love me some chocolate milk after a workout! Yum!!

Shannon said...

Great tips! Now, wanna come up to Buffalo and run with me? It's actually 60 degrees today! o_O

jayme said...

i saw what you did there. but in hopes of getting back to being allowed to be in your wedding, i plan on not running and being a fatso and letting my roots grow out and eating donuts and picking my nose. see! i'm not a pretty person! i'll do anything to be back in ash and dash's wedding! xxxxooooxox

Jen said...

love this post, especially since I've just gotten serious about running. ummm yesterday I registered for a half marathon in May :-x I figured I had to get myself to stick to it and progress somehow, lol! I am LOVING it though!

Ashlyn said...

I am the worst at stretching after my runs too.

Also, I like "reward yourself". I used to be counterproductive and reward myself with food...then someone said to me "Don't give yourself food as a reward. You're not a dog."
It resonated haha

julia rose. said...

I am the farthest thing from a natural born runner- no lie!! But I've been working on it, trust ;) Thank you for the great tips!!

Katie said...

i am so bad at stretching too! but now I should do it!

Samantha-Elizabeth said...

love this! i'm a pretty avid runner, but reminders never hurt ;) thanks for posting!

Anna @ The Things I'm Learning said...

These are great tips!

Lindsay said...

Thanks for the tips Ashley! I'm a new-ish runner and I gotta agree, setting a goal is a soooo important. If I didn't I'd be quitting before I knew what my body could actually accomplish!

Rosie said...

Love this Ashley. I'm a runner as well and every single one of your tips was right on point : )

Bre said...

Just pinned those PB/banana bites. Great idea!!!

Jenny said...

These are awesome tips! Thanks for sharing!

Faith said...

I want to become a runner but truthfully I am scared. I wish I would just do it.

Sara Louise said...

My best motivator to run is my dog. It makes him happy so it makes me happy :)

Katie said...

Thanks for this, Ashley! I would love to try running in 2013 and this will be a great help.