If every time you hear about someone finishing a marathon, you feel you could do it to but then the thought of running puts you off, then do not worry. Many non-runners go through these thoughts before they get initiated into it. To put you through your paces, we enlisted the help of Manik Dhodi, fitness coach and athlete to tell you how to do it right and knock off the stubborn lockdown kilos.
“Running the first mile could seem difficult as well as discouraging, especially when you see other people dashing down the road,” says Manik as he shares few tips below to help you start, and before you even realise, you would be lacing up your running shoes regularly.
Step 1: Get the right gear
Running just requires a good and comfortable pair of shoes, socks that could take care of sweat and avoid blisters. Manik stresses that you need to be comfortable so you need breathable clothes as well. “Get clothes as per the weather. It could be shorts and tees for summer, and in light and warm innerwear in winters,” adds Manik.
Step 2: Always warm-up
You need to warm up your muscles to get them ready to move and prevent injury. You must do that for at least 5-8 minutes. This will help you open-up your muscles and joints.
Step 3: Start with walking and then run
Start with walking for 5-10 minutes and then run for a minute and continue this for 20-10 minutes. Gradually, increase the duration of running and reduce the duration of walking.
“Don’t push yourself too much. And keep it to 3 days a week so that you give rest to those muscles and avoid them to burn-out,” says Manik.
Step 4: Add variations
Incorporate Strength/functional/mobility training in your routine. Do it on alternate days to running twice or thrice a week.
Step 5: Rest
Keep at least one day as a complete rest day and let all the muscles relax.
Step 6: Discover your motivation
Ask yourself why you want to run. It could be general fitness, weight loss, to complete a marathon or a half.
Step 7: Stay hydrated
Hydration is a very important aspect of running. A lot depends on how well hydrated your body is and how good you feel while running. Focus on a healthy balanced diet including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lean protein, etc and a good water intake can help you run better.
Step 8: Posture
Maintaining a good running posture helps you run more comfortably and efficiently, reducing the risk of injury. It also reduces the risk of fatigue and helps you get the most out of your run.
Step 9: Progress at your own pace and celebrate your progress
Everyone’s body is different and responds differently to any new activity. Increase your time and effort gradually while paying close attention to your body’s signals. Run at a pace at which you can talk, and not at a pace where you feel breathless, and your heart is pumping out.
Your pace would improve gradually. Celebrate that Progress and be Proud of Yourself.
Step 10: Cool down after your run
Cooling down after each run is as important as warm-up before the run. It reduces sourness and avoids injury and helps you to be ready for your next run.
“Everyone has a different reason to continue running. Some love running solo, while others like a company or they may have a running group. I call it “My Time With Myself”, and I absolutely love it. running is my meditation,” says Manik. What is Your Motivation? Once you find it, there's no looking back.
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