How to make running easier
1. Breathe right.
I ran cross-country in high school. It was fun, but training still sucked(see above). My coach kept stressing to take deep breaths. I could never really figure it out. When I concentrated on taking deep breaths, I felt like I wasn’t getting enough air, does that even make sense? Well, I have found a way that help.
When I am running, I let my breaths mimic my quick heart-rate, but when I feel my lungs getting tight, like they aren’t filling up all the way, I force my lungs to take one huge deep breath, and most of the time, my lungs will open up and receive the air. I usually take this breath about once a minute, and it makes all the difference. Sometimes, my lungs feel ready for that deep breath, but they don’t open up and receive the air, so I have to try again in a few seconds. This sounds strange, but it has helped my running time and distance greatly. Make sure to also exhale completely and force out the stagnant air.
2. Run for at least 30 minutes
This is especially important if you are just starting out. There is no better time to start jogging than right now! I won’t sugar-coat it, your first jog after a mainly sedentary lifestyle is going to be hell, but it will get better! Always shoot for 30 minutes. There is something magical about that number. I used to jog regularly for 20 minutes, and it was always hard and really horrible, but once I started jogging for 30 minutes, my lungs, muscles, and heart really strengthened, and it made my jogs much easier. You DON’T have to run the entire 30 minutes. Just run as long as you can, then walk until you catch your breathe. The key is to keep moving for 30 minutes. You will be surprised how much longer you can run even on the next run you take.
3. Empty Stomach
I am not saying to fast the whole day before your jog, just don’t go right after dinner or after a huge breakfast. Your body will be using all of its energy digesting your meal, and you won’t have any left for your run. For me, 2-3 hours after a meal works really great. I also avoid chugging lots of fluid before my run as well. It usually sits in my belly and gives me a nasty side ache.
4. Good Shoes
I mostly ran with cheap shoes, until I broke down and bought good ones (and my husband finally convinced me to be less cheap!). Let me tell you, it is definitely worth it. Be on the lookout for good deals, you don’t have to pay an arm and a leg. Running sucks enough, you don’t want to worry about aching ankles or knees afterward (or during).
This might be a no-brainer, but bring your music! I have a tutorial HEREon how to make a custom running armband for your ipod or phone. It’s easier to run if your mind is distracted a little bit.
6. Be Consistent
If you stop running, you will lose all your hard work. Your heart, lungs and legs will lose the endurance and strength that they have built, and your running will go back to sucking! Shoot for 3 times a week. That’s not so bad, right?
This is not a complete list, but these are few things that have helped make running easier for me (so I don’t completely despise ever second of it).
Do you have any tips on how to make running easier? (or even just bemoan how horrible it is?)
Let me know in the comments!