How to start running for beginners? 5 pointers to win!

The decision to start running again as a beginner is often a hard transition. It is usually preceded by a lot of self-dissatisfaction, and it can be hard to follow through with your intentions to reach your health and fitness goals. By following these 5 tips you can ease your way back so you don't burn out or cause an injury that will set you back. It's all about gaining fitness momentum! Consult your doctor if you have any pre-existing health concerns or requirements. But if you are the average person, like me, here are 5 tips for making your running comeback an ongoing victory:  

1. Positive Self-Talk

This is the most important. Give yourself a break, you are a hero already! Even though you may think that you will be happy only once you reach your goals, remember that you are on the road to improvement and take pride in that, because every day you are a better you! Be patient. Find that little voice in your head that says "You can do it" and listen to it, make it the loudest voice ever and take charge. Read more about the importance of positive self-talk and how to get it

2. Begin Easy

Don't be in a rush to get back to the fitness level you were back-in-the-day. It's certainly tempting to try to hit the targets you used to reach, but don't do it too soon. The last thing you want is to overcook your workout and get an injury that will slow down your momentum. So ease into running slowly.  That may mean walking a route for a couple of weeks, before graduating to jogging. Starting with shorter runs and slowly increasing distances over the weeks/months. Or for others it could mean starting your session at a slow pace and gradually building up intensity as you warm up in your session. More info on Progressive Running

3. Stretch Always

This seems like a no-brainer, but most people don't do it because it's painful and it sucks. The purpose for this is to warm up all your muscles and ligaments before your session so that you can minimise strain. Back, Hips, Knees, Ankles. Do it and don't rush it. The alternative is you get an injury, get longer recovery times, and ultimately slow down your fitness momentum despite your best efforts. Don't forget to stretch afterwards also as you cool down. Check out these awesome fantasy stretches!

4. Track Your Efforts

Be accountable to something or someone. Prove that you are on a journey to being better by seeing your progress over time. Otherwise you are quick to forget that you have come a long way. For a lot of people it is a journal/calendar, A friend/coach, or more easily- an app. This comes back to positive self-talk again. And at those moments when you feel like quitting or lack motivation, you can be reminded that you have come so far and here's the proof! Some suggestions for tracking progress

5. Real Food, Not Suppliments

It's tempting to fill the cupboard with fancy supplements and super-foods, but the real trick is just a balanced diet. Sounds boring and slow right? It just means eating a wide mix of foods, not just sugar and fat dominant foods (Which is often the case). Get your nutrients from a wide range of foods and keep it fresh as possible. A fanatical diet where you cut out certain foods altogether can shock the system, you may lose some weight, but it's more likely lost because your body is is high alert than anything else. Then when the diet is over, the body will store reserves in preparations for any other famines. You get the picture- The weight comes back. Just eat normal fresh foods, and not too much of one thing. Simple. Some information on diet and supplements


These are just 5 brief tips that will make your entry to the world of running a strong one. There is a lot of technical information online that is both helpful and overwhelming, but ultimately the best thing you can do is just be your own cheer-squad. You're truly awesome for getting out there and you should feel great about that!

If you would like more useful tips on running to reach your fitness goals please feel free to subscribe to the blog - Much love the Fit for Battle team  :-)

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Joel Anthony