Running outside for me was very intimidating, I was never a runner, not once in my life was I a part of any sport so when I started jogging outside I was so worried, I started running with T but he was good so it was one round of me dragging my feet or T waiting for me every few minutes and dragging me along. I would be so embarrassed to even go to the running track because everybody there was good I felt I was the only person struggling so much so I gave up on running but it was always on my mind. I always wanted to become one of those people who can run so comfortably.After a few months (it could have even been an year) I went back to give running a second shot, I still had no stamina and I think 30 seconds was all I could jog before I felt like I was having a heart attack, again I would run with T and another friend of mine both would go ahead and wait for me but this time I pushed myself and did not give up.
Finally it was time for me to run on my own because everybody has different priorities and it was not right for me to depend on anybody for my daily run, so the first day I just went for a walk in the park, the next day I started jogging/walking, my stamina was better than when I started but still not very good, slowly I got used to jogging in the park and then we moved to a place where there were no parks close to home so I had to start running on the road and now a days that’s what I do. I have come a long way from where I started and I have a long way to go. I have listed a few things that helped me overcome my fear:
You will improve fast
You might not have great stamina but if you are consistent you will see a change really fast. You could start with the couch to 5k plan or just make your own plan and stick to it.
Only till the next lamp post
This was my secret to increasing my distance. I would always aim to reach only the next lamp post not a step more, but when I reach the next lamp if I feel ok then I would continue till the next lamp post, no stopping in between lamp posts. This way I did not feel the pressure of running long distance just till the next lamp post which never felt too much.
Taking walking breaks is fine
If you are just starting don’t worry or feel bad about your walking breaks, cover your planned distance. Walk whenever you feel the need to and get back to jogging as soon as you can, you will notice your walking breaks will reduce with time
I would always get intimidated by other runners, then I realised when I’m jogging I barely remember other runners, they pass by I do notice them but then the next runner passes by I don’t really give anybody a second thought the same why would anybody else give me a second thought. If you feel embarrassed about your stamina or speed always remember nobody knows how far you have come (it could be 1k or 10k) or for how long you have jogged (it could be 5 minutes or 5 hours).
Comfortable shoes, clothes and a bottle of water
It’s very important to wear the right outfit and be comfortable; you don’t want to stop running because your shoes are too tight or because you are feeling too cold. I always carry a small bottle of water, I might not drink that much but it is good to be hydrated.
Cell phone and Music
I always carry my phone (not to talk while jogging) but for emergencies and no workout of mine can be complete without good music (if you are jogging on the streets/roads don't forget to keep your volume low. I prefer to be aware of my surroundings)
I personally like jogging/running outside because I find it more entertaining and fun. This is one exercise that you can do anytime/anywhere :). Hope you find this post useful. Are there any other thing you do? As usual I would love to read about your ideas.
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