It’s never too late to start a running program, and there’s no better time than now! We all make New Year’s resolutions, many of which fizzle out after a few weeks.
Making the decision to start a running program is one of the best decisions you will make for your health, so go ahead and take the plunge in 2016.
START A RUNNING PROGRAM IN THE NEW YEAR!
While it seems as easy as putting one foot in front of the other (and it is!), there are some helpful hints that will get your off to a good start!
MAKE A DATE
Make a date and celebrate! Look at your calendar and set your start date. I find it’s easiest to start my training cycles on a Monday, because it works with my calendar, but it’s totally up to you.
Putting on a date on the calendar makes it official and gives it a sense of urgency. Also, it will be helpful to know when you celebrate your runniversary! 🙂
ENLIST A PARTNER OR FRIEND
Having a partner or friend to keep you accountable always makes it easier to stick with a new routine. If you decided to pair up with someone who is already a runner, make sure you have a discussion before starting about your training plan, pace, distance, etc., so you will feel comfortable.
SIGN UP FOR A RACE
Yes, you read that right. 🙂 I’m not asking you to sign up for a marathon, but registering for a 5k 2-3 months ahead is a great way to stay motivated and on track with your training.
Running a race to cap off your training cycle will give you a HUGE sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. It’s a really exciting light at the end of the tunnel!
There are a ton of running apps now, and many of them allow you to integrate the app with your social media profiles to connect with friends and make new ones.
If you don’t have running friends that live nearby, you can find ones online. Having a social support system will help you to stay motivated and challenge yourself!
FIND A TRAINING PLAN
If you have never run before (or it’s been a while since you’ve run), Couch to 5k is a GREAT plan to follow. It will take you from walking to running a 5k (3.1 miles) in 9 weeks.
It’s an easy to follow program that works by mixing intervals of walking and running, to gradually ease your body into running for the full time period.
Having some semblance of a training plan will help you from doing too much too soon and developing shin splints, plantar fasciitis, IT band problems, or plain old burnout! If you increase your running time/mileage gradually, you will be much LESS likely to develop a running injury, so take it slow!