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How To Start Running… And Enjoy It

How To Start Running… And Enjoy It

I used to dread running. It seemed like the worst possible form of exercise to me, and I hated it every time I tried to do it. However, over the years, running is an activity that I’ve grown to love. I have discovered ways to make it fun for myself, and I now enjoy running immensely. If you’re struggling to enjoy running, too, here are some ways you can get into the habit of loving this type of exercise!

1. Choose The Right Gear

I’ve found that if I don’t feel comfortable or confident in what I’m wearing, running is a lot less enjoyable. I feel a lot better and more motivated when I have on comfortable leggings and a sporty top, rather than big, baggy running short sand an old t-shirt. Whatever you feel most confident in, however, is what you should be wearing; you’ll find that feeling good mentally has a lot to do with your mindset while you exercise!

This also means having the right shoes. Uncomfortable running shoes can make the experience truly miserable, so you need to have shoes that you can exercise in without being in pain. This may mean an investment in some good sneakers or other exercise wear, but it is absolutely worth it to feel good in your body.


2. Find Your Motivation

If you can find a good motivator for running, it makes you a lot more likely to enjoy the time you spend doing it. For instance, if you’re training to get in shape for a marathon, you’re a lot more likely to enjoy pushing yourself and trying to hit to new records.

If you’re a casual runner, try using the app ‘Zombies, Run!’ This is an incredibly unique app that will make running so much fun. It is a fully immersive experience from the beginning; when you put on your headphones or earbuds, you dive into an audio world in which zombies are chasing you! In order to evade them, you must run for your life; you can track your runs and go on hundreds of different missions and routes. With this app, you’ll actually want to step outside and go for a run! There’s no better motivation than running away from bloodthirsty zombies.


3. Start With A Slow Pace

If you’re not used to running every day (or every few days), don’t push yourself super hard right at the very beginning. You can burn out very quickly if you try to go too fast and hard too early on. Remember that it’s okay to go slow; it’s better to start out by slowly jogging than sprinting. You can begin to work your way up to a faster pace or a longer route as you continue on, but that shouldn’t be your initial goal when you first begin, otherwise you’ll be miserable and immediately hate running.

4. Bring Your Friends

Having a partner to keep you in check, or even just to keep you company, is a great way to make running more enjoyable. If you take a friend along on your next run, you’ll have someone to encourage you and push you, as well as someone to have fun with. Friends make everything better, and running is no exception! Go find a good exercise buddy and you’ll find that you look forward to those times a bit more.


5. Curate The Perfect Playlist

One of the best things I did when I started running was curate a Spotify playlist to run to. This seems pretty simple and standard, but you need to do this well, otherwise you’ll get sick of the music quickly and it will no longer motivate you after a while.

Make sure to choose songs that will make you feel confident and powerful; it’s important to hype yourself up! Also, don’t pick songs that you listen to outside of working out. I’ve found that if I only listen to certain songs while I’m running, I look forward to hearing that playlist more and it makes me genuinely excited to run.

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6. Warm Up And Cool Down

Before you start your run, make sure to warm up for a bit. If you try to run right away, chances are that you’ll tire quickly and feel ill. If you start with a brisk walk or a slow jog for a little bit, and then go into a faster running pace, you’re more likely to have better endurance and enjoy more time running.

When you’re ready to be done, make sure to cool down, as well. You don’t want to go from running straight into sitting down; that’s bad for your leg muscles. Instead, make sure to do some walking or slow jogging as you come to a stop so that you can wind down and feel more relaxed when your run is finished.


7. Set New Goals Over Time

Your goals are simply just not going to be the same when you first start running as they will later on. It’s important to set new goals for yourself every week or so in order to challenge yourself and gradually build up to your desired pace and route length.

At the beginning, you goal may be to run for thirty minutes three times a week. After a month of that, you’re going to feel stronger and much more confident in your running abilities, so you can change it then to forty minutes four times a week. You can gradually increase that time and length as you go on, and then you can avoid burnout and make sure you’re still enjoying yourself.


8. Reward Yourself

Make sure to be kind to yourself after a run; this is a great time to eat some good food, take a shower, and just relax. Running is much more enjoyable when you know that afterwards you can just kickback and have a good time. Reward yourself with your favorite food or a fun movie, and you might just be excited to go running and complete your route!

How do you enjoy running? Let us know your own tips in the comments down below!

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