Running adviceNovember 23, 2009 9:56 am General, home
Coincidentally, I was running a 10km race this weekend in Vénissieux, and Chris Blizzard replied to an email about running I sent him months ago. At the time, I gave him a few tips on getting started in running without getting injured, and reading back, I think they are worth sharing.
Advice from a recent beginner
When you start running regularly, take it very easy before you start upping the distance. Your heart & muscles will tell you to go further & faster before your joints are ready for it. Trainers say that you can up your total weekly distance no more than 10% per week. And running more regularly is worth more than running long in fewer sessions. Four three mile runs is better than two six mile runs.
When you do decide to start running further, start doing it in fractions – run 1 mile, walk 1 minute, run 1 mile, walk 1 minute. If you’re on 10 minute per mile pace, that’ll drop you to 11 minutes per mile, but you’ll be able to run 7 or 8 miles easily.
Vary fast & long runs. If you’re starting to stretch out runs & regularly going more than 5 miles in a run, try swapping out one of those 5 mile runs for something like:
- Warm up 2 miles
- 4x800m at a faster pace (if you jog 10 minute miles, then try to run your half-mile split in 4 minutes) with 2 minutes break between splits.
- Warm down 1 mile
If you always run long & slow, you’ll stay a slow runner. If you start training your body to run a little faster, you’ll improve the entire system – cardio & muscular. And you sweat more too.
To lose weight, do that 5 or 6 mile run on a Saturday morning – don’t starve yourself the night before, and drink water or tea before your run by all means, but running in the morning on an empty stomach will help you drop those pounds. Once you go over about 30 to 40 minutes running time, you’re eating fat. If you’re diabetic, this might not be advised.
And don’t forget that every body is different, no one scheme or training plan works for everyone. Your body’s a machine, and it’s one which can be made very efficient with maintenance.
Once you get to the stage where you’re running that speed work, you might consider adding some shorter sprints & really start getting faster