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Advice on Running?

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Old 09-29-2009, 12:48 AM   #1
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Default Advice on Running?

When I was younger, I loved to run, but I haven't run in years. Right now, I walk about 18 miles per week at a pretty decent pace. Tonight, I went to a track to see how far I could run. I ran 1/4 of a mile then I stopped and walked a 1/4 of a mile. I did this same thing a second time. I seriously thought that I would die! It was tough (which I expected)!

For those of you who are regular runners, how long did it take you to get into the groove of running? Any tips for a beginner?

Many thanks!

J
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Old 09-29-2009, 01:11 AM   #2
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Yeah--do you have an mp3 player? If so, consider the Couch to 5K program, which is a series of podcasts. That is how many of us (including myself) got started. I did the first 6 weeks and then got sidelined by asthma. I continued walking 3.5 miles 4-5 nights a week until the asthma thing got done, and then I just started jogging on my own, without the podcasts. I'm now using my own music and have worked up to running 2 miles at a time (no resting).

The music on the podcasts is pretty bad (unless faux 80's Euro-tech is your thing), but it's cool because the guy on the podcast, Robert, tells you when to walk and when to run. If you can run 1/4 mile, you are ahead of the game and will do fine with C25K.
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Old 09-29-2009, 01:22 AM   #3
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I started off jogging very, very slow for as far as I could go in an hour every night. I worked my way up to six miles in an hour. I think it is more of a mental thing, and you just have to force yourself to do it. I think you would find it much more rewarding if you took it easy on pace, but just forced yourself to mentally break through and do a mile. ****, do three!
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Old 09-29-2009, 03:15 AM   #4
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I also did the Couch to 5K and highly recommend it. You work your way slowly up to 5K basically and at that point you feel comfortable enough running for a half an hour straight. I am actually far enough now (I completed the program) that I'm going for distance rather than time, so I can slowly build myself up to 10K. It's a process that takes time and patience but it is really acheivable!
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Old 09-29-2009, 05:18 AM   #5
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I didn't use a formal program, but I ran for years using run/walk intervals. I did a whole marathon using 10/1's (10 min jog/1 min walk, repeat for 26.2 miles). I found I eventually got to the point where I just didn't need the structured walk breaks anymore and could run continuously for fairly long distances. I'm a big advocate of walk breaks -- it gives your legs a break and lets you go much longer without exhausting yourself.

When you first start to build up your running endurance, one of the most important tips is not to try to run TOO fast. Just go out at an easy jog. Take a walk break when you need it. Then jog again. You'll be surprised how fast your endurance will increase. And make sure you have good running shoes! Go to a running store and have them fit you properly for your stride and feet. Running is high impact and having properly-fitting shoes is very important to prevent injury.

Good luck!
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Old 09-29-2009, 07:34 AM   #6
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Excellent advice, everyone! Thank you so much!

Cheers,

J
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Old 09-29-2009, 03:25 PM   #7
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I was on the elliptical for 6 weeks before I started jogging. I would do 30 minutes on the elliptical every other day and increase the level of difficulty every week. Then I moved on to the treadmill with 10 minutes of warm up walking, 10 minutes of jogging, then 10 minutes of cool down walking. Eventually it turned into 5 minutes of warm up walking, 20 minutes of jogging, 5 minutes of cool down walking. Work your way up and stay persistent! Good luck!
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Old 09-29-2009, 03:47 PM   #8
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You've probably found it by now, but here's the Couch to 5K program:
http://www.coolrunning.com/engine/2/2_3/181.shtml

I'm a big fan of it, I think it's a great way to start out. I've never used the podcasts, but I can see how that might be easier.
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Old 09-29-2009, 07:09 PM   #9
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Another vote for the C25K program. I used the free podcasts for a while...until the music made me crazy...and the I bought a 2.99 app for my ipod tha still keep track of the times for me but allowed me to use mine own music.

I am running in my first charity 5K this sunday. I can hardly believe it!!
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Old 09-29-2009, 09:14 PM   #10
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I can't thank you all enough; this is great advice! Sounds like the C25k is a great way to get started.

J
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Old 09-29-2009, 10:02 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MBN View Post
I didn't use a formal program, but I ran for years using run/walk intervals. I did a whole marathon using 10/1's (10 min jog/1 min walk, repeat for 26.2 miles). I found I eventually got to the point where I just didn't need the structured walk breaks anymore and could run continuously for fairly long distances. I'm a big advocate of walk breaks -- it gives your legs a break and lets you go much longer without exhausting yourself.
Hmmmm, this might be why I'm having trouble increasing my time and distance. I am trying to just gradually increase with no walk breaks, so maybe I need to change my philosophy and try taking a 1 minute break every 10 minutes or so. I think I'll give that a try next time I go out.
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Old 09-30-2009, 12:06 AM   #12
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I have tried adding some walking intervals to my runs and it hasn't seemed to improve me overall time at all. OH how I want to break that stupid 40 minute mark for the 5K!!!

It seems that the walk breaks make the faster pace while running not actually take any time off.

Oh well. My pace is slowly improving....Patience is a virtue, right?
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Old 09-30-2009, 07:48 AM   #13
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Here's my 2 cents on speed / distance training (and I'm not an expert, I just like to run):

When you are first starting, the most important thing is consistency - just get out there and move on a consistent basis. Since you are starting from scratch, improvements in endurance (distance) AND speed come pretty quickly at first. But, at some point everyone will reach a "plateau" where they don't see much improvement with the same program. So, to increase endurance or speed, you have to change something. And simplistically ... to run farther, you have to run farther. To run faster, you have to run faster.

If you want to increase your endurance, you should pick one run per week, and gradually increase its length. Take the run slow and don't increase your overall weekly mileage by more than 10%. That's how people train for distance events. If you want to increase speed, take one run per week and throw in some faster intervals of running. Try 30 seconds or a minute of all-out sprinting, then walk or jog easy to recover, and do that several times. Another approach is to find a hill and run up and down. Either way, you are training your body to run faster.

In my experience, you can train to increase your distance OR you can train to increase your speed, but it's darned hard to do both at the same time. I usually go for distance first, then keep the distance the same and train for speed.

There are lot of factors influencing speed. Body weight is a huge factor, on me, even 5 pounds makes a big difference in how fast I can go. As they lose weight, most people find they will just naturally get faster. Other factors are natural ability, biomechanics, general physical conditioning, terrain, and weather conditions.

And for all beginner runners: Cross training and strength training helps to keep your muscles "balanced" and joints stabilized. Make sure to stretch effectively and often. Get properly-fitting running shoes. And have fun!

<thus ends my seminar for the day>
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Old 09-30-2009, 08:07 AM   #14
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Thank you MBN for the informative seminar
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Santa Shuflle 5K (Dec 5): 37:15
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