a couple following running tips for beginners outdoorsRunning seems self-explanatory until you are actually doing it. If you aren’t a pro-runner, you are sure to stumble upon questions on how to start running such as length, pace, and form of your running. It’s no mystery that running is one of the best ways to shed weight quickly, build endurance, and strengthen cardiovascular health. Running is extremely beneficial for your body but it’s not always easy to do. Use this guide to begin your journey to running without feeling intimidated by knowing the facts and tips to make running for beginners as enjoyable and beneficial as possible.

Start Slow

The first step in becoming a better runner is to take it slow. Pushing yourself too hard, in the beginning, can lead to unwanted injuries that will ultimately slow you down. If you love walking, you’re in luck because it’s the basics of running. If running is too intimidating for you, simply start with walking as it strengthens your muscles to handle the stress of running later on. Since not all cardio is the same, even physically fit individuals need to adjust slowly to new forms of exercise, running included. Be patient with yourself, always begin your running routine with a walking warm-up, and increase distance with time.

Work Your Way Up

When you’re ready, begin alternating between running and walking. A recommended way to do this is to complete five minutes of continuous running, followed by one minute of walking. Stay in this running and walking cycle for at least 30 minutes, three to four time a week. Increase the time spent running according to how fast your body adjusts to this new form of exercise. Increasing your speed or distance too soon can be detrimental as faster running increases the amount of stress on your muscles. It’s imperative to build up your endurance before speeding it up and it’s crucial to work your way up slowly. When beginning, keep a brisk, conversation pace that is manageable for your fitness level.

Fix Your Form

Running form is different for every individual and everyone’s running style is unique to them. Although proper form will vary, a common piece of running advice simplifies what your form should be—run tall, run relaxed. Using this motto will help you realize when you might be slouching, as proper posture helps alleviate the impact on subsequent joints and muscles. Similarly, running relaxed will ensure you are light on your feet and prevent unnecessary tension. Keep your chest up, shoulders down, and eyes on the finish line.