What You Need To Know Before Your First Run
So you wanna run, but don’t know where to start? Before you lace up your sneaks, there are a few things you should know and prepare beforehand. While this list is not exhaustive, it should get you on the right path to tackle your first run!
What To Wear
I’ll be honest and say that this was a big deal for me on my first run. Clothes are a motivational factor of mine, so I wanted to make sure I had all the right gear. Clothes are also a very important part of running because wearing the wrong clothes or shoes could lead to injury.
Since this will be one of your first runs, it's not necessary to buy all new things (nor should you since your preferences may change), but it is important to have supportive shoes and comfortable athletic clothing (including socks – blisters are the worst!). As you continue your running, you’ll learn more about what your preferences are/what you need and you can visit a running store to get the gear that’s right for you.
Some other wearable considerations include: hats/visors, health tracking watches (Garmin, Fitbit, Nike+, etc.), face masks, and sweaters/jackets.
How To Physically Prepare
Running preparation starts days before your actual run.
Make sure you’re getting enough sleep, staying hydrated, and eating well to ensure you’re feeling your best while hitting the pavement.
YouTube is a great resource for your physical preparation. Watch some videos showcasing proper running form as well as warm-up and cool-down routines and incorporate the routines before and after your run. Videos from The Run Experience are my favorite.
The night before/morning of your run, have your hydration (and nutrition if you’re exercising for over 45mins) ready.
How To Mentally Prepare
Don’t freak out, everything will be great! You’re taking your first step as a runner and you should be so proud of yourself!
If you’re goal-oriented, set a realistic goal for your runs but speed should NOT be a factor. The only time-related goal you should consider at this point would be duration (ex: run/walk for 30mins).
Get motivated by scrolling through your favorite running Instagram pages, creating a new running playlist, or queuing up a new podcast or audiobook. Feel free to start with my open & collaborative running playlist on Spotify – add your favorite upbeat Disney songs!
Plan your route and share it with a friend or family member. This helps in a few different ways; you’ll know exactly where to go during your run (and how far you’re going) and your friend/family will have an idea of where you are in case something goes wrong or they just want to cheer you on! My favorite website to plan my route is MapMyRun.
Have a reward for the finish line! I love coming home to a treat post-run so whether it’s a food reward or finally getting something you’ve had your eye on for so long – use your treat as motivation to complete (and continue!) your running.
With this blog and others in mind, you should be prepared to tackle your first run! Don’t forget, you always have someone in San Francisco cheering you on!!!