Running advice for beginners

Running Advice for Beginners | British Military Fitness

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All of us were once a beginner to BMF and I am sure at some point you looked around you at the start of class and wondered how on earth everyone else was so calm and relaxed before doing an hour’s exercise with BMF. After a few classes it probably became obvious. 

Running is no different. Like BMF classes, all you need to do is listen to some advice and throw your heart and soul into it. That way, not only will you get the most out of it, but you’ll also enjoy it.

Firstly, Set a goal

Every success story starts with a dream, so to be a successful runner you need to choose your dream and set yourself a goal. Whether it’s to complete your first ever 5km without stopping, or smash the course record, it doesn’t matter, as long as you have a clear end goal to work towards. Even if your aim is much higher, maybe a sub three-hour marathon is your target. It’s the same protocol: choose the goal and then a timeframe in which to achieve it.

If you are stuck for a goal, why not sign up to the award-winning Major Series 5km & 10km mud obstacle race? This is great for beginners or those wanting an alternative challenge.

Once you’ve set your goal you’ll need to get out there and train.

Get the right kit

You need to make sure you look and feel the part. Running is not expensive as long as you make sure you look after your feet. If you don’t there could be some pricey physio bills coming your way. You need the right pair of shoes - right for you, not what suit your training partner or the guy you sit next to at work. Almost daily I hear someone recommend a pair of shoes because they achieved a PB in them. Please, don’t choose a pair based on this sort of advice. The shoes that work for you will be influenced by your personal running style. Visit a reputable sports shop that will assess your running gate on a treadmill and then advise the correct shoe for your style.

Check out this article with further information about the recommended equipment and kit for runners.

Follow a plan

Following a plan to your goal is a great way of making sure you will succeed. If a training session is in the diary, the chances of you missing it are reduced. Also when increasing your volume of training it helps to write it down to ensure you’re not over doing it. The biggest risk of injury is too much, too soon and checking how much you’re doing easily combats this. Keep a note of day, time, distance and how you felt. It’ll feel great when you look back and see how your times have improved.

Listen to your body

Sometimes you will wake up with every part of you aching and sore. Listen to your body, get some rest and fight another day. Think of the bigger picture and what might be at stake if you run when tired. If your body doesn’t feel up to it you could pick up a cold or worse, injure yourself further. If you feel like you must do something, go for a gentle swim or yoga session.

Don’t forget other exercise

Cross-training is important as it gives your body a break from running. The body will take a lot of impact through running and mixing this up with a non-impact sport such as swimming and cycling will help give the body a little break. Plus don’t forget to continue your BMF classes, as these will improve your strength and conditioning, which will help when it comes to running faster and for longer distances.

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