How to Take Your First Steps
Feb 02, 2017
For the past 12 years, I have been turning couch potatoes into marathoners with Marathon Makeover. We start by walking one mile. Sometimes, the starting distance is shorter, so we are a "start where you are" type program. The journey to the finish line truly starts with that one step. If you don't take the first step, you can't take the last one.
In order to be successful, there are a few necessary things we recommend doing. If you want to start walking or running, read the list and follow it. With some persistence and dedication, you will soon be walking and/or running as much, or as little, as you want.
- Shoes. The importance of wearing the shoes that are right for you cannot be stressed too much! I am all about a good bargain, BUT this is NOT the time! To anyone who asks, I recommend them going to a specialy running store and being properly fitted for a shoe. This entails, measuring your foot (length and width) with a Brannock device, looking at your feet (barefoot), and watching you walk (also barefoot). All shoes are not created equal, and neither are all feet. Some feet pronate (turn inward), some supinate (turn outward) and others are neutral. There are also issues of biomechanics that can be unique to the individual. The job of the shoe is to work with your body to keep it in alignment and with the right amount of support and/or cushion to get the job done. The folks at the specialty shoe store are trained to find the shoe that is right for you. It will be more involved than going and picking out a shoe that you like and it will cost more. BUT, it will be worth it! Investing in the right shoe can save you pain, frustration and more money spent later, trying to correct a problem or injury.
- Schedule. If you are beginning to run/walk for the first time or for the first time in a long time, start at the very beginning, with a beginner's schedule. Do not think that because you ran track or cross country 10, 20 or 30 years ago, that you are not a beginner. Err on the side of caution and start at the beginning. You can click HERE and download our beginner schedule. We encourage ALL of our beginners to WALK for the first 10 weeks, even if they are training to run. We have found, through the years of training couch potatoes, that walking for the first 10 weeks, gives your body time to adjust to the pounding, land reduces your risk of injury. After the first 10 weeks, we advise using the run/walk method of intervals to begin running.
- Starting line. Pick your first event, your first goal and get moving! Setting a goal can be great motivation to follow the schedule and be consistent. Pick a 5k event about 8 - 10 weeks out and register!This will give you incentive each day to get in your time and miles. To find an event, check your local track or running club website, the specialty running store where you purchase your shoes or ask around - there will be a 5k in your area soon.
The toughest part of anything is the beginning. Once you get that momentum going, it will be easier, so just START! Take that first step. If a schedule seems to be too intimidating, start with 30 minutes each day - or 15 minutes, or walking to the mailbox. Start where you are and build from there. If you don't start, you'll stay where you are. If you do start, there's no telling where you'll end up!
Get started today, you CAN do it!
If you need help and motivation, join US at Marathon Makeover! We can give you the help, motivation and inspiration you need to get and keep moving. Do it today - here's how!
Marathon Makeover Coach