Friday, June 1, 2007

And Susan makes four...

Originally published November, 2006

I received an email from my oldest sister today announcing that she too has taken up running. She wrote that her reason for doing so is because she was getting tired of being left out of family gatherings that more and more have been revolving around running events.

I think it's terrific that my oldest sister has made this decision and it confirms my belief that running is about so much more than sweating, hard breathing, and pounding the pavement - leave that for the athletes. In our case, it has become a real connection point for our family. Separated by miles, schedules and other commitments, running has become a common thread, keeping us together, and a force gravitating us closer to each other.

My sister asked if there was any advice we could offer her as a newbie to running. I've given it some thought, and here are my best ideas for runners just starting out, in case she happens to read this:

Read John Bingham's "The Courage to Start" and then read "No Need for Speed", also by Bingham;

Start easy - a walk run approach is best to get your body ready for the new stresses it is about to experience;

Go to a good running store and get fitted for a pair of quality shoes. It's worth spending the money here - you need a comfortable ride;

Before getting started, accept that there will be bad days - forget about them;

Before getting started, accept that there will be outstanding days - remember them always; and,

Enjoy. Take in the sights, celebrate your accomplishments, no matter how small they might seem. New runners see great gains in fitness and endurance in a relatively short period of time - keep track of your workouts in a log or online so you can easily look back on how far you have come.

Most importantly, put one foot in front of the other, shut-up, and run.

No comments: