How To Start Running in 3 Easy Steps

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I was the girl hidding behind a tree in track to avoid running. My friends and I took a VHS tape and would somehow manage to get our PE professor to let us dance during the torturous 45 minutes of physical ed instead. 

Once I finished college though, I had put on more than 15 pounds and found that I needed to start working out to get back in shape. This is when my relationship with running really started. Mind you I would have never called myself “athletic,” so I started out dating this new thing in my life with a bit of skepticism. The romance evolved, and we were officially “in a relationship” with running a few months later when I ran my first race. 

Even after several races, I’ve hit some rough patches in my eight years as a runner, starting over a couple of times. Each time though, I go back to these three easy steps you can follow to start running:

1. Do Run-Walk Combinations. Warm up with a 5-minute walk as you tune in to your favorite workout playlist. Then break down your run as follows: run for 3 minutes, walk for two… and repeat 4 times. Cool down for 5 minutes. Don’t compare yourself to the woman speed racing in the treadmill next to you. She started out just like you. Speeds of 5.0-5.5 miles per hour are comfortably challenging to start with.

2. Get Proper Running Gear. Running is not an expensive sport (though running-shoe aficionados might disagree) but you do need clothing that breathes and is moisture wicking to avoid chaffing and blisters. Good running socks go a long way, pun intended. I use Feetures and Balega, but there are really good options out there. 

3. Make a Running Playlist. A common problem for new runners and come-backs is the treadmill doldrums – being bored to death.  I take my party playlists and listen to dance music as I run, imagining I’m actually salsa-ing instead. There is always a song that pumps me up the most, which is what I’ll play on the last repeats to get me through.  

So, are you ready? In summary, do this three times a week to start running:

30 minutes treadmill or outdoor session:

  • 5 minute warm-up
  • 4 times / 3min run – 2min walk combo
  • 5 minute cool down.

Using proper moisture wicking apparel and mind-dancing to your favorite party music! 

What’s the reason you want to start running? Let me know and share any other good tip you have!