Climb a mountain! Lose weight! Learn to dance! Take a trip! People everywhere are declaring their New Year resolutions. After all, a new year means a fresh start and another chance to begin that one thing you’ve always wanted to do. While many don’t keep their resolutions for long, it doesn’t have to be that way. You can successfully start, and keep, a running routine for this coming year.
Running is great exercise and can help you maintain strong, healthy feet. You have to start it right, though. Pushing yourself too hard at the beginning, particularly if your body isn’t prepped for it, can lead to injuries.
Begin a pattern of walk-runs. Warm up thoroughly with some dynamic stretches and a little walk, then begin an alternating pattern of running for a few seconds, then walking again. Gradually increase the time you run and decrease the time you walk. Over several weeks you’ll work to a consistent run without stopping. Once your run is complete, walk to cool down and stretch your whole body. This helps you keep healthy feet and avoid injuries later.
There are a few things to keep in mind as a beginning runner:
Don’t Push Too Hard – Going full-force before your body is ready almost guarantees an injury. Build up the speed, intensity, and route you want over time.
Invest in the Shoes – Wearing the right shoes for your foot type can make a big difference for your comfort and strength. Get the proper fit for the best results.
Don’t Ignore Your Body – If you’re feeling completely out of breath, or your body hurts, you’re pushing yourself too hard. Take breaks in your run if you need. Don’t push through pain and risk injuries.
Eat for Exercise – Eat fruit, veggies, and whole grains, along with protein to keep up your strength. Drink plenty of water, too, so you don’t dehydrate.
Relax and be Patient – It takes a little time to build up a habit. Relax! Grab a buddy to help you stay consistent, but give yourself the time you need to get into running.
This is the perfect time of year to start running. If you’d like more tips, or you are struggling with foot pain when you exercise, let Dr. Darren Silvester at Next Step Foot & Ankle Clinic in Pleasanton, TX help you. Just call our office at (830) 569-3338 to make an appointment.