I’ve been jogging running now for the past 2 years. It all started when a mate was making plans to celebrate his 40th. Come to Dingle for the weekend says he. Grand so says I. He then proceeded to reveal his evil plan-a 40th weekend celebration that included running a half or full marathon. Needless to say I opted for the half marathon-21 kilometres or 13 miles in old money. I’ve gone from feeling out of breath after a mere 10 seconds of running to being able to run a full 2 hours 14 minutes non stop. And if I can do it, anyone can!Here are my top five tips for mastering the art of running:
- There’s safety in numbers. I started heading out with a running club in January.It was cold, dark and unbelievably wet but I was buoyed up by the company. There’s nothing more reassuring than surrounding yourself with a group of people who are as tragically unfit as you are.
- Start off gradually. I downloaded a Couch to 5k app which brought me from complete novice to being able to run 5k in 9 weeks without having a cardiac arrest. You start with alternative splits of walking and running. From memory the first split of running was 60 seconds, then 3 minutes walking for half an hour. Gradually over time, the running parts get longer and the walking parts shrink and become less frequent. After a few weeks, you’ll be able to run for longer periods than you ever thought possible. Fact!
- Sign up for a race-there are oodles of races of all lengths and for all abilities around Ireland. It really focuses the mind when there’s a goal to work towards. Plus a lot of the smaller community ones give you free tea, sandwiches and as many homemade buns as you want afterwards. Result!
- Get the right gear. I was running in my old pair of Nikes for months. I’m not going to lie to you-I lost a few toenails that way. The best sports stores will perform a running gait analysis on you. Ok, so you might feel like a right plonker having to run from one part of the store to the other, but that will give the sales assistant all the info they need to ensure you are in the best shoes possible for the task at hand. For those in Galway, I can’t recommend Gotta Run in Oranmore enough for their helpful service.
- Download those podcasts or get the right tunes!There are so many amazing podcasts out there at the moment. My favourite ones right now are Song Exploder where artists take one of their songs and deconstruct it, providing you with the info on how they wrote both the lyrics and melody. For fans of the West Wing, try the West Wing Weekly where former star of the show Joshua Malina and superfan and music composer Hrishi Hirway (who also brings us Song Exploder) discuss each episode of one of the greatest TV series of all time. Spotify also has a whole bunch of comedians listed so you can get your funny on while you run!
Have you any tips on running you think I’ve missed out on?Please let me know in the comments section below. Happy running!