So you know a friend or two that are getting involved with the couch to 5km or the park run programme and you want to get started as well but don’t know where to start from. Here are a couple of ideas for you.
Lets start with an analogy that Rome wasn’t built in a day and that you haven’t done any running in a while (or ever). You will need to build your fitness over a period of time and you won’t be able to start off running for hours on end. In fact doing so is not the best option as you are likely to end up injuring yourself.
Lets start with some run/walk sessions as you build your fitness. Here are a couple of good options.
Start with a 5 minute walk to get the blood flowing and warm up a little bit. Then jog for 60 seconds followed by 60 seconds of walking to give you some recovery and take the pressure off your legs. Repeat this ten times then finish with 5 minutes walking to cool down. This will be 30 minutes of exercise and a great introductory session. Spend 10 minutes at the end doing some stretching to assist you with recovery.
Having done the session above a few times, you will then be ready to step up and advance it a little bit. Start with a 5 minutes of walking to warm up again followed this time with 2 minutes of jogging and only walk for 60 seconds. Repeat a total of seven times prior to finishing with 4 minutes walking to cool down. Don’t forget to stretch afterwards for recovery. This session involves 14 minutes of running which is up from 10 minutes in the first session.
When you do these sessions make sure you dress in comfortable clothing and ensure you have good quality shoes to look after your feet. Clothing needs to breathe (i.e. allow your sweat to pass right through it) and allow you to move freely. For women, a quality sports bra can make life more comfortable by providing support where you need it most.
Exercising with a friend and setting goals together can create a bond and commitment to each other. Knowing that your friend will be waiting for you to join them is the best motivation to get out the door and exercise. On the plus side you both reap the benefit that the exercise gives you.
At Qwik Kiwi I have developed a programme that takes non-runners and builds them up progressively to be able to run 4km in 4 weeks. If you are interested in joining the Qwik Kiwi Tribe and running 4km in 4 weeks time click here.
If you would like further advice feel free to contact Coach Ray.
Coach Ray is the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi – Endurance Sports Consultant.
Coach Ray specialises in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. He can be contacted at www.qwik.kiwi, firstname.lastname@example.org and 021 348 729. Make sure you sign up to his monthly informative newsletter.
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