Take it and Run Thursday: The Basics of Running

A couple weeks ago Tom over at runnerslounge.com came up with an idea he called Take it and Run Thursday. He will throw out a topic and everyone that reads his blog and wants to participate can write on the topic and link it back to his blog. It sounds like a cool idea, so I decided to join in on the fun. The topic for this week: “The Basics of Running.”

I’ve decided to approach the topic as if I were talking to someone that was contemplating taking up running. Here goes nothin’!

  1. Shoes Talk to any runner about taking up the sport and the first thing they will probably tell you is to get the right shoes. That doesn’t mean going to your local Athlete’s Foot and grabbing a pair of “Running” shoes that you find attractive. This means going to a local running store and having a professional fit you for your proper shoe. I wasn’t happy when my first pair of shoes turned out to be pink, but I can tell you that my joints loved those pink shoes. They really can mean the difference between finishing your race and ending up with an injury.
  2. Start Slowly Most babies had to crawl before they walked, and likewise you should walk before you run. If you are starting up a running program and haven’t been physically active in some way then you should start walking before you start running. Once you get yourself up to about 20-30 minutes of walking then look into a beginning running program that slowly increases the amount of time you are running. I personally used the Couch to 5K program program. It starts you out running intervals that progressively get longer and longer.
  3. Body Glide is My Friend Something I never leave the house without when I am running is Body Glide. It is a lubricant for athletes that prevents chaffing from the clothes you are wearing. There are many runs I would have never completed if I hadn’t had this beautiful little product.
  4. Cotton Can Be the Enemy Cotton has a tendency to absorb sweat and hold onto it like there is no tomorrow. If you find that moisture in your clothes is a problem you should look into purchasing some moisture wicking shirts, shorts and undergarments. I am a sweater! Cotton just does not work for me for any distances over 3 miles. As I have been running more I have found that I just prefer the lighter feel of moisture wicking fabric while I am running. Keep in mind it doesn’t have to be hot out for you to sweat your way through your clothes. I find that when the weather is cold I need that extra protection of the moisture wicking action even more to help me keep my body temperature up.
  5. Safety Safety comes in many forms. During the winter months I spend a lot of time running in the dark. To help keep myself safe I wear a reflective vest, hat, and pants to make sure that traffic can see me. I also carry some pepper spray when I run. Not only is this to help protect me from other people that might be out there but also from animals that may approach me while I am on the run.
  6. Listen to Your Body Overtraining can be a real problem for runners that are just starting out. Listen to what your body is telling you. If you are feeling tired or irritable it might be an indication that you need to take it easy until your body has a chance to recover from the training you are doing. Pushing yourself too hard can make you sick or cause an overuse injury that can put you on the sidelines permenantly if ignored. If something hurts talk to your doctor to help ensure that you will reach your goals safely.

These are the basic guidelines that I follow to make sure that I can continue with this sport that I have grown to love.

Read more on the Basics of Running from other Take it and Run Participants.

3 Responses to “Take it and Run Thursday: The Basics of Running”

  1. RunnerNat Says:

    I loved the bit about Body Glide. I am addicted to the stuff. Also good in summer when you are wear a skirt. 🙂

  2. K80K Says:

    I used to wear biker shots under skirts, but this stuff definitely eliminates that need. 😀

  3. Jeff Says:

    Great stuff, Katie.

    Amazing how not so long ago, just a few years really, cotton was it. Who’d a thunk.

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