The Do's and Dont's of Being a Newbie Runner

By: Bethany Barich (Follow on Instagram & Twitter) 

It's the number one form of cardio, it's a life changing habit, and it's also one of the most satisfying forms of exercises because results are guaranteed. 

Running, though difficult at times, has many rewards and benefits. Besides the obvious, which is that it is a weight loss benefactor. It's fantastic for your knees and builds endurance, strengthens your lungs, and it's a big stress reliever!

Getting into running comes with a lot of tips and tricks, so let's check out some of the do's and don'ts to becoming an avid runner.

DON'T immediately run long distance or at a fast pace. If your body isn't used to either of those, then don't force it to adapt immediately. Running is about endurance and starting off small is the best way possible.

DO dress comfortably. This is something, that when the weather gets cooler, cannot be stressed enough. When winter strikes, learn to dress in lite layers so that as you feel your body getting warmer, you can just remove the layers but not be held down by all the weight. If it's summer time, feel out the temperature and dress accordingly - don't wear clothing that will cause you to overheat! 

DO run the trails if you're running with a dog. Not only will the sights, sounds and feeling of being in the wilderness make you and your pup happier, but also running on the uneven terrain will be a big challenge for you. Running on asphalt is okay too, but sometimes can become harmful towards your dog - so opt for trails if you can, be sure to check out if you're dog is allowed to be unleashed or leashed and make sure they're safe from other animals.

DON'T run heel-toe. Even though this can build up the calves, running like this for a long time can eventually contribute to long term back and knee problems. If you can't help but to do heel-toe, power walk for a while, then practice landing in the middle of your foot, and then from there, put that technique of landing into your running practice.

DON'T forget about other workouts! Seriously - it's important. Obviously to better yourself as a runner, you must run, but to help build up strength in supporting muscles that help while running, other forms of cardio are important. There's cycling, the elliptical, or since it's summer, swimming. Plus, it gives your body a break and allows for time to strengthen.

DO make a powerful playlist. Whether it is upbeat or slower music, having it in general will be beneficial. It'll keep you motivated, help you recover, plus it's fun! Test out different playlists to find what fits best for you. Just remember it's about finding a nice balance between going fast, or going slow.

No matter what, before becoming a runner make sure to check with your doctor to see if you can and how intense. From there, branch out and do as much research as you can, buy a nice pair of shoes that you feel will fit you, and get onto the trails or street.

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