Okay, so let me begin by saying: I am not an expert. I am not a medical professional. I am not a physical therapist. I am not a marathon runner. I AM however a former awkward middle schooler who trained enough to have a successful career as a military officer, with extensive fitness requirements.

I have learned HOW to love running when I used to despise it like everyone else. Here are my best tips to start running for someone who hates it:

#1 Shoes matter!

Get yourself some good running shoes– There’s an article here that will go through the best kinds for you. Personally, I have ran in Mizuno, Nike, ASICS and Brooks and Brooks are by far my favorite! I also hear a lot of good things about Hoka. Personally, I have worn Brooks since 2014, but a Boston marathon alum friend of mine recently recommended ASICS Novablasts.

#2 Baby Steps

The biggest reason why people stop running when they start is due to injury! Start out with a plan or smaller goals and increase your weekly mileage by 10% a week

#3 Secure your Belongings

I wear a stretchy fanny pack that fits snug to my body to hold my keys, phone and IDs while I run! I cannot stand running and hearing keys jingle, or having to hold anything in my hand! I got mine at TJMaxx for $10 years ago and it does the trick.

#4 Tunez

Once you run and figure out your average pace, I really recommend finding a playlist that has songs with the same beats per minute as your pace. This will help you stay on pace and run along to the music. It makes it more fun! I’m not that fast, so I love the Morning Run Playlist on Spotify. At 150-165 RPM, it has county music, R&B and a lot of variety in between and it helps me move right along.

#5 Keep Going

It’s simple. Keep running. I firmly believe that the first two miles are the hardest. When you begin running, go for distance instead of time. I bet you can trot for four miles! Obviously warm up to that safely, but it’s worse to burn yourself out for two miles than to comfortably run four. You should be able to maintain conversation while you run!

#6 Run…then turn around

My all time favorite tip: run a certain length and then turn around and go the exact way you came. For example, if you want to be able to run four miles, literally run 2 miles away from the way you came. Then, turn around and come back. You’ll be motivated to continue running because even if you walk, you’ll only get to your final destination slower. So you might as well keep going!!

#7 Before & After Care

Before you run, make sure you’re staying properly hydrated. Warm up before you take off and stretch after you’re done. Also, make sure to get you a good meal after as well! Food is your fuel and your energy!

#8 Just Do itttttt

Hate to tell you this: you will only get better at running if you continue to do so! The hardest part is leaving your house, the rest will come natural.

Thanks so much for reading and good luck!

xoxo alex

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