Want to Start Running? Here's How to Get Started

16 July 2020

The thought of running can seem like a walk in the park to some. But it can also be very intimidating. Have you struggled to get through a mile? Or even through the first few minutes of your run? You’re likely in the same situation of more people than you think. So, what should you know before pounding the pavement? Leah Palmer, Y Healthy Living Director of the Dodge YMCA, is back to share some quick tips to help get you started.

  1. Do lots of walking. Especially in the very beginning and especially if you're running for the very first time or haven't exercised in a while.
  2. Alternate between running and walking your first few weeks. Get your body familiar and comfortable with the new workout. Start out running more than a few minutes at a time, with walk breaks in between.
  3. Have realistic expectations for your first few weeks of running. Don't focus on the end goal. Instead, focus on the process.
  4. Track every run so you can see your progress. Make notes about your workouts. Download our YMCA mobile app and log your runs (or walks) every day. It’s completely tailored to you, so you can go at your own pace.
  5. Don't forget to stretch your muscles! Before and after your run.
  6. Listen to your body. Don't overdo it. Take it at your own pace. 
  7. Does the shoe fit? Invest in good running shoes.
  8. Focus on your breathing. Practice belly breathing before you head out and try to avoid panting.