3 Running Tips for Cardio Haters
I hate cardio. Seriously, I hate cardio but I run about 3 miles, 3 or 4 times per week. If I, someone who hates cardio more than anything can get her butt off the couch and learn how to run then there is hope for anyone. Even you.
I have always hated running. Back in the day in gym class I was usually one of the last students to cross the finish line. I don’t have a typical runner’s body. I am short and my legs are even shorter. I have a pear shaped body and my feet have had bunions forming since I was in grade school (I have to wear orthotics but I don’t really think they help much) my husband on the other hand is 6’2” and has the legs of a gazelle. He was on the cross country team in high school and even though he doesn’t do much running these days, any time he accompanies me on a 5km race he always finishes in the top 5 and laps me. It’s not fair.
Even if you haven’t been blessed with a talent for running or the body type for which it comes natural there are many things you can do to improve your endurance, run longer distances and increase your speed. Running is just like any other skill you have to hone. You may not get to the point where you are running Olympic races but you can still improve on what you are capable of now.
There’s an app for that
My number one tip for anyone who wants to start running is to get the Couch to 5K app. This is the program that helped me start running regularly and got my endurance up from barely being able to run a mile to the point where I can run 3.2 miles (that’s 5km) You can find a copy of the program online and follow it without downloading the app to your phone, but honestly I find the app so much easier to use and it was well worth the $5 I paid for it. The program starts you off running and walking for several minute intervals at a time. It gradually increases the running time and decreases the walking time over the course of 9 weeks until you are able to run for 30 minutes straight.
Find a friend who wants to start running and meet up with them to go jogging. When I am running with my friend Heather I run longer, faster and more often than if I was training on my own. Most of the time when I go running by myself my run turns into a walk/jog and then it turns into just a walk with me pausing to take pictures of cool things I find on the side of the road. It is so helpful to have a buddy to run with to keep you motivated.
Schedule a Race
When I started running with the Couch to 5K program I entered myself into the Running O’ the Green St. Patrick’s Day 5km run. The race was taking place shortly after my 9 week program ended. Knowing I was going to be completing the race really helped me keep up with my runs and stay motivated. Heather and I are trying to complete a 5K race every month to help keep our endurance up and increase our speed.
The main thing to remember when starting to run is that consistency is key. The more often you go out to jog, the better you will become. Always remember to stretch before and after running to help prevent injury.
What are the biggest challenges you face with running and exercise? Share in the comments!