Some people seem born to run, gracefully racing into the horizon like gazelles, never breaking a sweat. And then there are the rest of us. Somehow, we didn’t inherit the athletic gene and we’re a little late to the game. But we can learn. Want to start jogging? Try these tips for beginners.
Nike says, “Just do it.” We say, “What’s the hurry? Hydrate and stretch for a bit.” There’s danger in procrastinating for too long, but you need at least a little preparation before you head out. Read up on your new activity and map out where you want to go. Set some goals for yourself—modest, attainable goals. Experts recommend that you start by jogging for a minute and then walking for 90 seconds. You can alternate running and walking for 20 minutes, three times a week. When you’re ready, add another minute every week. And when you feel the endorphins kick in, you’ll know you’re on your way.
Suit up Safely
If you’re jogging at a gym or in public, you’ll want to blend in. There are lots of expensive equipment and outfits out there, but you don’t have to buy them. Some basics are musts, of course. Your ratty tennis shoes aren’t OK, even your first time out. You need the right support or you’ll end up injured and discouraged. Make sure your shoes are meant for running, and more importantly, that they fit well. You also need socks that fit and won’t shift around. Athletic socks are cushioned in the right places, and compression socks can help you recover afterward. Make sure your shorts won’t make your legs chafe and that you’re wearing something lightweight and bright for visibility.
Join a Running Club
It might sound intimidating, but if you want to start jogging, this is one of the best tips for beginners. People in running clubs aren’t competitive; they want to improve, and they want to help you get better, too. Skeptical? Rent the movie “Brittany Runs a Marathon” to see what these clubs are like. They won’t push you to jog past your comfort level, but they might inspire you to nudge yourself a little. It helps to have accountability when you’re a newbie, and the social interaction can take your mind off the time. Of course, you might not be able to hold a conversation and jog right away, so just grunt cheerfully. They’ll understand.