Body Buzz: Run It Off
by Sasha Kanal
It seems natural that April’s Body Buzz should cover running, after all it’s spring and many of us are keen to kick start our fitness before the summer. Sasha Kanal explains why it’s time to dust off the running shoes.
April is a popular month for marathons to take place, and those taking part will be training like crazy before the big day. Plus the very fact that the weather is improving and the evenings are lighter, provides that natural compulsion to just get outside.
In fact, we should all be running more. It’s one of the easiest, cheapest and most convenient forms of any exercise, merely requiring a little time, effort and a pair of good trainers. Improvements in cardiovascular and mental health can be seen quickly if you run regularly and your approach is consistent. Whether you’re a novice or a veteran runner, here are some basic tips on getting the most out of this fantastic activity.
Buy a proper pair of running shoes. This is crucial, but doesn’t have to be expensive. Simply seeking professional advice on the correct type of running shoe for you will pay dividends in the long run and lower your risk of injury. For example, consider whether you’ll be running mainly on tarmac or other terrain – obviously this will impact on the kind of footwear you need. Go into a specialist running or sports shop and speak to them – any establishment worth their salt will be able to advise you and kit you out. Many shops now offer you the chance to ‘road test’ trainers on an in-house treadmill.
MAKE A PLAN
Whether the goal is to run a marathon or you’re aiming to just be able to keep going for 30 minutes without a break, it really pays to have some sort of plan on how you’re going to get there and achieve these goals. There are many free to download plans online that have been put together by experts and are based on achieving a set distance within a target time. It’s all about making progress. Use this in conjunction with an app on your phone and you’re away!
JOIN A RUNNING CLUB
The beauty of jogging alone to clear your head cannot be denied. But if you plan to get serious about your running, you may want to join a running club of which there are many in Sussex. Most cater to all running abilities and it’s a great way of keeping motivation up, discovering new routes to run and making new friends.
RECOVERY & NUTRITION
It’s vital you warm up and cool down before and after each run. Also allow yourself sufficient rest days and recovery between sessions – important for avoiding fatigue and injury. Eating well-balanced meals when training which include plenty of vegetables, the right amounts of carbohydrates and protein will also help your performance. Happy running people!
CAUTION: If you have any long-standing health concerns, always consult your GP if you’re starting a new exercise such as running.