I have to admit that the last year has seen my exercise total reduce, due to an often sedentary lifestyle. I have lost access to my local leisure centre, and the change to home deliveries removed my need to walk to many places in my locality. So eventually i have running a go and hated every second. But i worked through the hatred. Here are some tips on how to enjoy running.
It was not just the initial hatred of the exertion that stopped me running. I am very self conscious and have seen what other joggers look like! So i had to remove the cynicism of going out in public and running and sweating and suffering. Fact is, no one is paying you any attention. So get out there. Getting fit is not a beauty contest. Do it for your own reasons, and do not care what others think. And if you cannot get to that point immediately, then run early or late in the day when it is quieter.
I am pretty sure i could not even consider running without headphones. I need something to distract me as i run, as otherwise i would concentrate on the pain of the physical exertion. So whatever suits you best is what you should go with. For some that will be music, preferably with the right beat to propel you along. For me, i felt a voice coach in my ears, with specific directions on when to run and when to stop really helped me progress from beginner to a higher competence of runner. Which leads to.
By which i mean apps. The app could be the Couch to 5k one i used as a beginner needs direction in how to progress and schedule running, rather than just going out there and injuring yourself. But there are other apps that can help too, and one useful type is simply ones that record your distances, and keep track of your progress. A spreadsheet for runners if you will. It can help with motivation to see your improvement laid out before you, and setting goals can keep you going.
Do not do the first time i tried to go running. Which was to run fast round the corner thinking this was all easier than i thought. Within a few minutes i was exhausted and had to stop for a while. Always pace yourself. Start with warm up exercises, perhaps walk for a short while, then ease yourself into running. This is not a race. It is about being able to run significant distances, getting yourself fit and more.
There are two principal reasons to take regular exercise. Reminding yourself of what these are on a regular basis may help drive you forward. Firstly of course is exercise. Getting fit prolongs your life, makes you feel better and increases your energy levels throughout the day. Or perhaps simply allows you the occasional food treat without the guilt associated with that! Secondly, i cannot underestimate the value of exercise to increasing mental health quality, especially over the past year and more. I never feel better mentally than just after i have finished some tough exercise. Which for me used to be running around a badminton court.
If you’re still struggling to enjoy or even tolerate running, then don’t take it on by yourself. Consider joining a running group. Or jogging with a friend, turning the activity into a social event. And think about connecting with people online too. Join forums and discussion groups, get tips, advice and motivate each other to keep running.