I’ve never been good at running. When we had to run the mile in PE, I was always the kid behind the people with injuries. I’ve never been really overweight or anything, I just suck at running. This year has been the first time in my life where I’ve said “I’m going to start working out and stick with it,” it’s actually been the truth. In the past, I would start working out and then within a matter of weeks I would stop doing it because I didn’t see instant results.
I ran my first 5K last weekend and I did not come in last. It was amazing. I’m now training for a 15K in March. I’ve got a little over 4 months to train and I’m currently up to running 4 miles without stopping. I tried to follow this training guide, but I’ve ended up just kind of doing whatever I want. I’ve definitely seen a major increase in my running distance over the past few months, so I’m going in the right direction in my opinion.
1. Get a workout partner. I cannot emphasize how important this is. Some people just need some sort of accountability whether it be talking to a person or just posting that crap to Facebook every day. I’ve had workout partners before, but we always ended up going to get Pizza Hut or whatever instead of working out. Now, my boyfriend is my workout partner and it is amazing. In a way, it’s kind of a competition. He always wants to go faster than I do and I always want to go farther than he does. It’s also a great way to spend time together when we have crazy work schedules. Having a workout partner who has your best interest in mind makes a huge difference.
2. Try different activities. We have a gym at our work, so we generally go there 3 to 4 times per week. But we also ride our bikes on the weekend. Where I live, they’ve converted old railroad tracks into bike trails so you can safely ride long distances. The trail where we go to is 30 miles, so it’s a darn good workout. We both really enjoy riding bikes and it’s a way to break up the monotonous workout routine. There are also classes like these where you’re jumping around the whole time which is really fun, but also builds up your endurance. I also run around my neighborhood on the weekends so I can practice running outside.
3. Wear good shoes. I’m not saying to go out and buy $300 magical shoes that have been blessed by the Tom Cruise Scientology warehouse. But there is definitely a difference between Payless BOGO shoes and a good quality pair of New Balances (or whatever brand you prefer). Having heavy or bulky shoes has a huge impact on how much more energy your body has to waste on just picking up your feet.
4. Consume enough food and water. This can be a hard one. When you start burning 1000+ calories per day, it can become difficult to consume enough food to keep your body going. You have to make sure you put enough real food into your body so you can keep up with your workouts. Also, if you don’t drink at least 2 liters of water per day, you’re kicking yourself in the ass. After a while, your body will start craving water and you won’t have to consciously make yourself drink so much, it will happen naturally.
5. Stick with it. You’re not going to see results in a matter of weeks. If you’re like me, you may never see the results on yourself because you will always see yourself as the chunky high schooler that you were 15 years ago. If anything, just stick with it for the positive mental health benefits. The physical results will come , they just take longer.