Recently a couple of members have stopped me after class wanting advice on how to start running. I know that there are people in the world that hate running; e.g. my husband. Thankfully he has endless patience with me so entertains my dreams of him doing a marathon with me some day and occasionally goes on short runs… not sure we’ll ever get to marathon distance; we’ll see. This is how to set up your personalised exercise program to attain those goals.
Before we even Start
As simple as it sounds you first need to find what you like to do. My husband runs with me to simply be supportive. Honestly, he HATES running. So, if running isn’t your thing, choose what is. Maybe you just like to go for walks or hikes. Maybe curling is your destiny; or punting maybe (Is punting a sport?). Obviously, no one at Adapted will fault you for falling in love with Yoga or Pilates (we’re bias, we love it too).
The main point here is that you have to like what your doing. If you hate running like my husband, your chances of completing an ultra-marathon are going to be quite low. On the other hand, if you love walks; even if you start just going around the block, eventually you’ll be walking for hours and will be happy as a clam.
Taking Baby Steps not Moon Leaps
Next, start small. OK, I’ll let you in on a little secret of mine. I remember when it was hard to run 1 mile and I felt like I wanted to die the whole time. I started running in high school and was SLOW. My first 5km run I almost passed out and was dead last! Now I can say that I have run 100 miles at one time (given it took a very, very, very long time…).
So, how did I get from 1 mile to 100 miles? Answer, I didn’t start off running! I started walking then slowly started running intermittently during those walks. Even if you start by walking down to your mailbox and back, then increase those little walks by 1 meter every few days, eventually you’ll be adding on a significant distance and you’ll be loving it.
This is the same thing for Yoga and Pilates. There is no point in coming to class and pushing yourself to the point of hurting yourself. If your new to any sport you want to start off slow and gradually build intensity. I mean really, my goal when I teach my classes is to embody this philosophy… I try to get people to have fun, do something healthy for themselves and be challenged to the level that they are at.
In my next blog we will continue the discussion of starting and progressing through an exercise regime and how to make it a habit that you love. Hopefully I’ve brought to light my theory of how to introduce yourself to any exercise program. The main point I wanted to get across today was to first find something you like to do and secondly, start off gradually so that you can continue to enjoy the healthy choices you’ve made.
Note: The doctor in me has to interject this little disclaimer… Before starting any new exercise regime it is recommended to consult your physician. If you have previous injuries or existing conditions, that’s fine. Your doctor will help you find the best exercises for you and how to manage any injuries you may have while exercising.