So you want to start running? You see runners along the road getting their fitness levels up, while you are feeling that tyre around your waist? It’s tough. You want to get fit but how do you get the motivation to start yourself? Don’t worry I am going to give you the exact tips you’ll need to get started.

1. Pick a “go” day.
Give yourself a couple of weeks to get everything prepared, but have a day that is specifically marked on your calendar as the day you start running. Start getting excited about this ‘new you’ who is a dedicated runner.
What should you prepare in the weeks leading up to your ‘go day’?

A. Make sure you’ve got the proper equipment (running shoes, shorts or tracksuit bottoms, an old sweater, sweat towel and a water bottle)
B. Mentally prepare yourself! (watch motivational videos of runners and their journeys or whatever it is that gets you motivated, if you feel the need to put on that old Rocky movie and skip to ‘The Eye of the Tiger’ scene then go ahead!)
C. Decide your daily route you want to run and then walk that route to make sure it’s ideal. (Try to stay as far away from busy roads as possible as the fumes caused by the cars will harm your chest and cause you to tire quicker)
D. Start eating healthier, cut out non nutritional meals and fizzy cool drinks as much as you can. Flushing your system by drinking 2 litres of water a day will make a massive difference.

2. Find a friend or a family member as a training partner
This isn’t critical, but having someone who is of similar abilities who is going to join you on your running journey can be a powerful motivator. They don’t have to join you for every run. This person will make sure you don’t slack off and a little competition on who reaches the goal faster will go a long way.

3.Get tuned up.
Research has shown that music is a powerful motivator and can make aerobic exercise, of any kind, more enjoyable. It definitely has positive effects! In the survey runners showed a marked preference for training to music – 87% of the sample.

So picking the right music to run to not only makes the run less boring, it actually makes you forget you are getting tired!

4. Go day: Start slow.
Exactly how far and how fast you go will depend on things like your age, weight, injuries, and previous training. One word of caution: you may have a good cardiovascular system if you spend lots of time on an elliptical trainer (Treadmill), but you still won’t be used to the impact of running. You will likely have the ability to run much further, but should build up slowly. Go too far to start with, and the next day you’ll hurt from the eyebrows down.

So the best way to start is to set a realistic distance and finish it without exhausting yourself. Get used to running this distance before extending it slowly as your running fitness and stamina builds up.
Once you have finished your run do not forget to stretch! The impact of stretching after exercising is so undervalued yet the difference it makes is felt instantly the next morning.
Here is a link on how to stretch on our site:

Follow these tips and remain dedicated and this time next year you will look back at the time you dreaded starting running and be glad you did! You could even be entering a 2km or 5km marathon or Fun Run! Who knows, perhaps you’ll be running The Comrades one day!

*REMEMBER – if ever you lose motivation because you feel like you’ll never reach the heights of those fitter around you, remember they also started from the same place you did. Never give up!


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