Running is a fantastic sport. It opens so many doors, gives you so many choices. Tarmac or forest path, riverside or treadmill. Running liberates you, helps you put the happenings of the day behind you, freeing you to think of nothing other than the beating of your heart, the pounding of your feet on the ground and the winding of the path before you.
I’ve been running on and off for a number of years now and it’s the freedom it gives that keeps drawing me back. It doesn’t matter what may have happened during the day, or even if it’s pouring down with rain, but running helps clear and refresh the mind.
clear and refresh
But as any runner will know, if you fall out of the habit of running regularly, or if you’re just starting out, the hardest step is always the first one.
So you decide you’re going to give it a shot, you’re going to start running. Those trainers stare at you from the cupboard, but the excuses begin to pour out — it’s cold or it’s raining, you’ve got a lot of work to do, it’s going to be hard and you may get a little out of breath.
A couple of weeks ago, over 18,000 runners hit the roads of Cardiff for the Lloyds TSB Half Marathon — 13.1 miles of winding, spectator-lined roads. It couldn’t have been a more beautiful day for the race. But weather aside, what those runners did is admirable, but they all had to start somewhere.
Trust me, find a friend or find your MP3 player, put those shoes on and get out there. Start small and build your way up. Like me tonight, you’ll be able to flop into bed knowing you’ve done something exciting today!
Runner’s World offers some great tips for getting going, including inspiration, nutrition, injury prevention, gear and training.
And if you’d like to know more about running, why not try these books:
The Real Woman’s Guide to Running: Motivation, Training, Nutrition, Safety by Liz Yelling (Paperback)
Running Made Easy by Susie Whalley and Lisa Jackson (Paperback)
Running for Beginners by Imagine Publishing (Paperback and Kindle Edition)
Running for Beginners: The Easiest Way to Start Running by Simon Adams (Kindle Edition)