Running is a sport for everyone. Whatever your age, shape or experience there is always something to gain from it. But before you do anything else (even donning the lycra and lacing up your trainers for the very first time) there are two fundamental things to get sorted.
This can be anything. If you are a beginner it might be to run for 30 minutes non-stop, or to lose 10kg – if you’ve done a bit of running already you might want consistently to run 3 times a week and vary your routes – or if you are a seasoned competitor you’ll be eyeing a PB or completing a 100k mountain ultra (!) Wherever you are in your running journey take a moment to think about why you are doing it and to where you are trying to get.
So you have your goal – now you can make a plan to achieve it. Having a plan means you have structure and focus and vastly increases your chances or getting satisfaction and enjoyment from your running. As you become more experienced, it will also allow you to judge paces and intensities of each run allowing you to train SMARTER and not just HARDER.
Gradual & Progressive – distance and intensity are built up steadily with no sudden jumps.
Varied – this can mean within a week, or week on week, but doing the same thing all the time will get you stuck in a rut.
Rest & Recovery – adaptations and improvements in fitness are made when your body is recovering from a workout so periods of rest and low intensity are critical to a successful plan.