Learning how to run? Jogging can be a great way to squeeze some extra cardio and aerobic exercise into your everyday schedule, and get a head start on burning calories, building muscle, and smoothing out your ideal workout routine for to achieve your personal perfect body fitness goals.
Running can be a little intimidating — take it from HBFIT founder Hannah Bronfman herself. But full-body fitness is all about facing your fears and overcoming personal challenges, and running is a great way to start your fitness plan strong. Before you hit the pavement, check out our five simple steps for learning to get into the running groove.
Even though there’s an urge to jump feet-first into regular jogging and sprinting, your body isn’t going to adjust to high intensity cardio on your first attempt. Instead, running beginners should start their running workout plans with frequent walking.
Walking, hiking, swimming, and slow jogging all fall within the family of low intensity steady state workouts. LISS cardio is a form of cardio exercise that experts agree is good for building strength over time and developing resilience and flexibility for higher-intensity interval training.
… and Work Your Way Up
Trainers often suggest starting with low intensity exercise for folks beginning any kind of serious workout plan, or for more regular gym junkies who feel rusty after taking some time off. Alternating between walking and jogging in shorter intervals is also recommended for running newbies training their bodies to get into the groove of a regular running schedule.
Get the Right Gear
One of the best things about running as a metabolic workout is that it’s relatively low maintenance. When it comes to gear, there’s not too much you need to get before you’re ready to go. If you wear bras normally, then your workout look should include a well-fitted sports bra.
Get comfortable with sports bras designed to fit a wide range of chest sizes — products like Enell’s Full Figure Sports Bra, or the Moving Comfort Sports Bra, come highly recommended by joggers with large busts who find many other products too constricting.
Only Run in Running Shoes
Workout clothing is nice, but the most important piece of the puzzle is running shoes. You should always and only be running with shoes that are designed for running in order to avoid unnecessary injury or discomfort.
Running shoes can be a bit pricey, but they’re also a necessity, especially if you’re just learning how to run properly to reduce running injuries. Nike running shoes are a widely trusted brand (and sleek and sporty designs pair with pretty much anything).
Do Dynamic Stretching
If you’re going to loosen up before a run, it’s important that your stretches take the form of warmup exercises like lunges, jogs, squats, jumping jacks, or fluid movements. Static stretching — holding a muscle in a fixed position — has actually been shown to increase the risk of injury before a run.