With cooler temperatures and vibrant changing leaves, autumn is a popular season for outdoor exercise, specifically running. Whether you’re an experienced runner returning from a summer off, or you’re ready to start your very first running routine, these helpful tips will get you started on the right (and left) foot!
1. Wear the right shoes – Carefully choosing your sneakers will prevent injuries and frustrations, thereby boosting your running confidence right from the start! Your local running store can custom fit you for a pair of shoes based on your gait analysis, characteristics of your feet, and the shape of your arch.
2. Find a running buddy – Running with a friend makes things more fun and holds you accountable, so you’ll stay motivated in your new running routine. Partners can range from an experienced runner acting as a coach, to another beginner looking for encouragement. A quick search on Google also reveals that most cities have local running groups, if you prefer a social run!
3. Start slow and steady – There’s no need for speed in the beginning (or ever!) of a running program. Responsibly build up your distance to avoid injury or burnout by using one of the Couch to 5K programs available online. Remember that it’s okay to take walking breaks – use the tried and true “run-walk” method, “popularized by distance coach Jeff Galloway, a member of the 1972 Olympic team.” (NY Times)
4. Set realistic goals – To keep exercise enjoyable, find practical ways to fit workouts into your schedule, setting you up for success rather than frustration or disappointment. Just because you start a running program doesn’t mean you have to run long distances or sign up for a race. Avoid comparing yourself to other runners. Do what’s best for your body and your schedule!