Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Running. Getting started.

I first started getting back into running in the summer of 2010. I had just gotten back from Colorado climbing Grey's Peak and seen a girl running to the top of the mountain, despite it being a 14er. Fourteeners are dubbed so because they are 14,000 feet or more. I also had seen two elite runners running up as well. Or ultra-runners. Those guys are just a different breed. This gave me a running bug that started off my love of running.

Why do I love running? 
Well, I have always been active in life. Before my 2003 wedding I ran, but no more than two miles and did pilates. I love to mix it up and do bootcamp, spinning or yoga. Running is a great activity for busy moms who don't have a lot of time or money. All you need is a great pair of running shoes and a dry-wick shirt. And running shorts--I have to have them.

Well, I started with just a mile or two on the trail behind my house. I remember how much my hips hurt at mile three or four and how it took a little while to get that distance under my feet. The first time I did eight miles it was so mind blowing--I thought I could do anything.

Here are some tips to help you conquer your "I can't do it" mentality:

  • Get a running role model. Talk to someone who has the same goal you have and has done it before. Ask them loads of questions. The best advice I got was to not do all of my training on a treadmill (thanks Jess!) There are loads of fun running blogs as well. Skinny Runner, Runners Rambles, Cake and Carrots are just a few. Also try Runner's World
  • Pace. Pace is this cool idea that you don't start out in a sprint and end in gasping agony. Ideally, you will start out a littler slower and have negative splits for your run (finishing at a lower time at the second half than the first half of your run). If you have an Iphone, Runkeeper is an awesome app that lets you know your pace while you run.  
  • Next, sign up for a race that's maybe 2-3 months away. It's such a great way to stay motivated and keep a schedule of days logged running. A 5K or 10K is a great starting race. Start telling people you are going to do it and talk it up. Get excited! Pony up the money and show up. I did not want to show up for my first couple of races. I kept telling Brandon I would be the last person crossing the finish line--not quite. 
  • Be disciplined. Most runners are a little type A. They love data. For my first 10K I had my training log from the Emerald City 10K in Dublin, Ohio and crossed off everyday that I ran. You can't make someone run so be a self-starter! 
  • Make it a priority. You wouldn't miss a hair appointment would you? When Brandon and I were both training for our half marathon, we would go through our calendars and make running appointments. We got babysitters for our long runs on Saturdays at the beginning of the week so we couldn't back out. If Brandon had to work late, I had to get my run in the morning or go to the rec center. 
  • Rest! If you are doing a half marathon, chances are you are going to be exhausted on 30-mile plus mileage weeks. Even more so if you are running a marathon. This is the time to ease up on social things and just relax and recoup. 
  • Fuel. Fun part. I literally can eat pretty anything I want to when I run. I love chips because they are full of salt. A good rule of thumb is anything reasonably made from whole foods is good. And I splurge every so often when I want. On long run days I would burn 1,200-1,500 calories. Guys burn 800-1,000 more calories than women depending on their weight. This means you need to fuel up! Smoothies are amazing after a run when your stomach is a little sensitive from running for a while.

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