Let's be honest, many of us hate the thought of exercising, let alone the thought of trying a marathon. Hell! I find jogging uninventive, boring and just tedious but I do like the thought of one day being able to run for a worthy cause and conquering any self-conjured fears.
Though the thought of running a marathon can be intimidating, with the right motivation, drive and training, it is possible to be amongst the thousands of runners at future marathons. I've seen it being done. I know many who've conquered their marathon fears and achieved their goals. Hurray!!
With many taking part in the London Marathon 2014, we've gone ahead and listed tips you too could use to ease you into developing jogging as a habit and hopefully, like me in the future you'll conjure up the guts to finally run a marathon.
Consulting the GP
As is always advised, before embarking on a new diet or exercise routine, it is important that you consult and get clearance from your GP. Certain injuries, relating to the back or feet and heart conditions are likely to impact whether or not you train or the extent to which you can train. Get started with a fitness assessment. Though gyms offer this, request one from your GP - it's cost effective. The results from your fitness assessment will allow you to get a clear picture of where your body is in terms of physical strength and fitness. The results will also be useful in helping you set goals and track your progress throughout the course of training.
Adopting healthier eating habits
We are indeed what we eat. Accustoming ourselves to a new exercise regime comes with a change in what we consume - it's almost goes without saying. Food is what fuels the body, so if you wish for your limbs and muscles to function as they were designed too, you'll have to feed it a bunch of goodness. We understand way too well that, not only can healthy eating be expensive, it can also be daunting as it takes a lot mental and emotional strength for us to transition and leave behind old/bad habits in which we have come to be so comfortable with. So begin by making conscious changes to your existing diet. Start my eliminating the bad and substituting it for the good.
The perfect running shoes
Though I agree with Christopher McDougall that we were born to run and therefore do not need running shoes to help or seduce us into the practice of running, running on the streets of my beloved London Town or the gym's treadmill/cross trainer isn't appealing one bit. The perfect running shoes are important not just because they protect our feet from the filth on the streets but from incurring and worsening existing feet injuries. I have an ankle injury that needs to be taken into consideration whenever I decided to try a new exercise routine, like yoga, insanity or even walking long distance. The wrong type of footwear support when I practice any of the exercise has many times resulted in me limping and complaining from the sometimes unbearable pain.
The appropriate running gear support can be purchased from any sportswear stores. Many of these stores' assistants are trained to give you the perfect advice as to what to purchase. SportsDirect has an in-store foot test that assists you in selecting the perfect pair of running shoes for your foot type. It is worth and important to visit a chiropodist if you have any knee or feet injuries before considering any strenuous type of exercise.
Walk, run, walk, run, walk, run, run and RUN!
The practice of walking for 1 minute, and running for 2 minutes then repeating the process for x number of minutes over 1 week, and increasing the minutes week by week, is sure to ease you into the practice of running and setting a routine that you are comfortable with. It's important that you track your progress every day and over your weeks or training. Looking at your charts or diary to see how far you've come will definitely motivate you to fulfil your goal.
With many things in life, running is more than just about our physical capabilities. Our physical endurance is connected to our mental strength and health. This is why the adoption of a healthy lifestyle includes the practice of the health of the mind, soul and spirit. There are various resources out there to enable you to achieve these and keep you motivated whilst on your journey. Some find it in their religion and spirituality, some in listening to motivational speeches and some in spiritual practices such as various forms of yoga. Whichever way you come to achieve it, hold on to it and let it comfort you on the days on which you feel like giving up.
Christopher McDougall says that running is a natural human reaction we exhibit when we fear something. When confronted by danger, our instinctive and instant reaction is to run - I am able to see the truth in this. Can you? Do you run? What's your motivation for running?
Please feel free to comment any additional tips or professional advice you may have in the comments section below