I received a great question from one of my clients at bootcamp this morning (thanks Tanya), asking me about the best way to begin a running program. I was a little time poor, with people needing to get away, to give the full answer so hopefully this will help add to the information I gave you this morning.
As a personal trainer, runner and running coach, I often hear people say “I would love to be able to run- but I can’t”. As you know there is no such word as can’t, according to me, so I always ask people how they have attempted to achieve the feat of becoming a runner. Quite often people will go all out and run every day for two weeks, running as fast as they can while holding their breath until they collapse in a heap, throw their hands in the air and just give up because it’s all too hard or they’re injured. My first piece of advice is SLOW DOWN!! You can run a lot further if you slow the pace a bit. After all we were born to run. We are hunters, we are designed to run down our food. Although that has changed a little now with the invention of supermarkets and, dare I say it, the drive-through. If it comes through your window people, it’s not food!
Anyway back to the running. The best way to start is with a walk/run program. Find a loop nearby of about 3 or 4km and set yourself a goal of being able to run non stop around it. It may take you a few weeks or months depending on your commitment level. As I said start off slowly concentating on your breathing and run as far as you can. Have a walking break and then when you are recovered run again until you need another walking break and so on……………… Each time you run (about 3 times per week) try and keep your running going a little further than the time before. Before you know it you will be linking up your loop and running the whole distance. Make sure you have rest days in between so you can recover and be strong for your next run.
Most of my clients who have been doing sessions with me have found it a lot easier to start a running program as they have already built up their stamina and cardiovascular fitness through pushing their bodies outside the comfort zone through our sessions. We are into week 5 of our Mt Clear boot camp and I heard the comment this morning “I had to run to catch up with one of my kids when I was out yesterday and I couldn’t believe that I was actually running and feeling ok”. There’s my reward, right there. I love hearing that I am making a difference in someones life.