Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Quick Running Tip Tuesday - Getting Started... (2.7.12)

People ask me all the time (mostly because they know that I joined the running community late in like... about 2 1/2 years ago), "How do I get started running?"

The answer is simple: Go for a walk. 

A bit of my story that will provide some background.  When my wife and I got married, one of the things that we enjoyed (and still do) doing together is going for a walk.  Nothing strenuous... just an hour long walk.  We would talk about our day or whatever was going on and get some exercise. 

For a while, I had been toying with the idea of trying out the "running thing."  I felt that I needed something athletically to get me moving and I missed the competition of organized sports.  Several of my friends had gotten into running and started to run races and it sounded like fun. 

So I jumped on Google... not really knowing anything about running, I typed in "how to get started running."  The first site that popped up was THIS one.  It was a beginners running plan.  When I would think about running 2 or 3 miles (much less than 13.1 miles or 26.2 miles), I would feel overwhelmed with not knowing where and how to start.  But this website said to essentially go for a 30 minute walk and run for 1 minute, 3 different times.  I thought, "I can do that." 

So I did.  I'm not sure what I looked like... but I'm sure it wasn't pretty.  But I could do it.  The next week added a little more running... and a little less walking... then more running and less walking... etc, etc... until the last week I could run for 30 minutes straight without stopping.  I was so excited that I almost cried!

But you know what??  I was started... and I could do it. 
And it all started with going for a walk. 

Now, I have run a full marathon (26.2 miles), 2 half marathons (13.1), countless 5ks (3.1 miles) and I'm aiming for another full marathon (October - Chicago Marathon) and half marathon (May - Cap City) this year.  All of it started with going for a walk. 

I did it.
You can do it!
Go for it!

Keep running my friends!


P.S.: Here is that website again in case you missed it!  By the way, there are countless websites just like that one that you could choose to use, I just landed on that one first and it worked for me.  The point is that you start very, very slow and work your way up.

Disclaimer (if you're into that sort of thing): Jim is not a professional runner nor is this blog endorsed by any company.  These thoughts are merely the thoughts and experiences on one runner.  What works and what doesn't work from a practical level.  Jim hasn't set any records, but he's run a few races (Marathon: 4h 22m / Half-Marathon: 2h 3m / 5k: 22m 57s) and he's been around the block! 

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