Whether you run to stay in shape, conquer new goals, or fulfill your daily endorphin fix, you’ve likely experienced many highs and lows along the way. While most runs inspire a sense of joy and accomplishment, those moments don’t come without their fair share of struggles.
Regardless of your fitness level or running expertise, there is always room for a little improvement. Once you’ve been running for a little while, it’s easy to fall into a routine and forget about mixing things up to improve.
We can always benefit from a few running tips.
One of the best parts about running is the fact that it leaves room for endless improvements. There is no limit as to what you are able to accomplish with a little hard work.
With running, you can challenge yourself to run a mile without walking, complete your first 5k, run a marathon, get that PR, lose a few pounds, and so much more.
Each and every runner has a different purpose. We set various goals for ourselves and work hard each day to achieve those goals. Regardless of the goal you’ve set, taking the time to implement a few strategies and running tips will help propel your progress and ensure you stay healthy in the long run (…literally!).
After years of running, accomplishing goals, rebounding from failure and plenty of trial and error, I’ve learned some of the best running tips around. These strategies will help you get started, maintain progress and stay healthy – regardless of your current running abilities.
Check out these running tips to maintain this sport throughout life.
10 Running Tips You Need to Know
Whether you are running for the first time or in the depths of marathon training, consistency is the key to success. It doesn’t matter how far you run when you get out there – just make sure you get out there consistently.
Maintaining consistency can be incredibly challenging, especially when life gets in the way and things get busy. However, conquering these obstacles and heading outside for a run may be just the relief you need to stay productive and focused when you need it most.
Remember why you started.
Your reason for running may change throughout your running career, but keeping your “why” fresh in your mind will provide motivation to keep going when things get tough. Writing down why you started running and keeping it somewhere in sight is a great way to keep it fresh in your mind – no matter how long you’ve been at it.
It’s easy to get caught up in the monotony of day to day life and forget the purpose and joy that running has brought to your life. When running feels hard or motivation is low, remembering where you started is a great source of inspiration.
It’s easy to put so much focus on the actual act of running that we forget about everything else. Rewarding yourself for completing a run by settling on the couch is so tempting, but won’t help you get better.
Make a point to intentionally include time for stretching, foam rolling and strength training in your running plan. These little activities may feel insignificant after a 4 mile run, but dedicating just a few minutes to recovery each day will pay off greatly.
>>>Your cadence is one of the most important weapons in preventing injury, but so often overlooked. Whether you’re a beginner or seasoned runner, taking the necessary steps to ensure your cadence is where it should be will help prevent injury and speed up the recovery process. You can learn more about running cadence here!
Increase one thing at a time.
Whether you’re just beginning or are training for a goal race, it’s easy to get focused on your goals and want to do everything in your power to achieve them. However, despite your relentless efforts and never-ending motivation, sometimes it is actually possible to do too much.
Many runners make the mistake of trying to increase speed and distance at the same time. When you’re working towards a new race distance, set your focus on completing the race in its entirety. Only once your body has adjusted to the mileage should you begin adding speed work.
Regardless of your ability level, incorporating speed workouts more than once or twice a week will eventually lead to injury. Dedicate one day each week for those speedy runs, and spend the rest of your days running at an easy pace.
Invest in a great running shoe.
Unfortunately, one shoe does not fit all.
Those running shoes might not work for you, even though your friend swears they’re her secret to success. Similarly, just because the shoes were really expensive doesn’t mean they are going to be the best fit.
Take time to either get fitted in a running store or experiment with different running shoes before training begins. Finding the right pair of shoes will help make running more comfortable and prevent many common running injuries from surfacing.
While running can be a relatively affordable sport, investing in a great pair of running shoes may take a bit of cash. However, what you’re missing from your bank account will pay off with pain free, healthy, lifelong running.
Increase your water intake.
Many people are chronically dehydrated and have absolutely no idea. Unfortunately, dehydration can lead to less than stellar running performance and enjoyment.
If you’re serious about enjoying your time on the run, make hydrating a daily priority. Set a goal to drink half your body weight in ounces of water each day. While this may feel ridiculous in the beginning, it will pay off on the run. Help your body replenish the liquids lost in sweat by proactively hydrating with water each day.
Find a routine that works for you.
It’s easy to skip a run when you’re feeling overwhelmed and unsure whether or not you have time to fit it in. Everybody’s schedule is different, so it’s important to find a routine that works best for you. Trying to run in the morning because your friend loves it doesn’t mean you will too.
Be realistic about the times you will be able to workout each day. Plan out your workouts at the beginning of each week and rearrange your training schedule to best suit the week. If you’ll be out late Thursday night, plan to complete a short yoga or strength training session that day as opposed to your 6 mile training run.
Ultimately there is no right or wrong answer when it comes to fitting it a run. If it works best for you to head out at 9:00 pm after the kids are in bed – that’s great. If you love a sweat session in the middle of the day and have time to squeeze your run in at lunch – excellent.
Make running a part of your routine each week, and when you find something that works – stick to it. Creating a routine sets you up for success and less excuses when life gets busy.
Set goals for yourself.
Whether it’s running for 10 minutes straight or completing an ultra-marathon, it’s important to set running goals. Working towards a goal that is challenging yet attainable provides you with motivation and a sense of purpose.
One of the greatest aspects of running is the fact that its possibilities are limitless. Challenge yourself to run a mile, complete a marathon, or finish a 5k in 30 minutes.
Strive to accomplish goals that used to feel impossible and you might surprise yourself along the way.
Related: 10 Steps to Achieve Any Running Goal
Nothing in life worth having comes easy. In running, just as any journey in life, you’ll be faced with obstacles that seem insurmountable at time.
Whether you’re facing a new distance, pace, injury, race, schedule or burnout, there are going to be challenges along the way. If running were easy everyone would do it. It’s those tough moments that remind us what we’re made of and give us the greatest satisfaction.
Persevere through the hard moments and continue to move forward, no matter what comes your way.
Versatility is one of my favorite aspects of running. The fact that running can compliment just about anybody’s lifestyle is what makes this sport so unique. It doesn’t matter your location, shape, style, height, lifestyle or fitness level. Wherever you are in life – running is there for you. These running tips will get you started, but the quality of life you find once you begin is what will keep you going.
More running tips:
- 10 Game Changing Tips for Distance Runners
- 8 Race Day Tips for Your Best Race Ever
- 5 Tips for Off Season Maintenance Running