Have you ever decided to involve Jogging into your health routine?
Nothing new but most would know the benefits of regular jogging and how much it can impact you.
Jogging or running for 30-40 minutes, 3 times a week can be a great way to start building stamina and muscle while losing fat.
At times we also receive advice that may be dangerously far from being true or perhaps it may only apply to another sport, but not to jogging.
Before lacing up your shoes, check out these useful jogging tips for beginners. Please take the bits of advice below with a grain of salt.
The Bad Advice
Just Wear Your Old Shoes
As shoes age, they lose their cushioning and support.
Going out for a long walk with old shoes can lead to shin splints, plantar fasciitis and stress fractures.
After a few distance, your shoes might still look good but they are due for replacement. You can really feel the difference if you slip into a new pair of the same style.
Some would add insoles but those tend to be temporary and won’t solve the problem, either.
Don’t Worry, Fluffy Won’t Bite
A definite no and I learned the hard way…
Petting a dog that you’ve met along the way is a risk. One unexpected touch may lead to stitches and not a good end to the day.
Now imagine a how hard it must have been with a dog running off its leash, without the owner around. Luckily it was just a jack russell.
Wear Ankle Weights to Burn More Calories
We are not born with extra weight around our ankles.
Although there are some benefits but one of the risks of wearing ankle weights is their ability to put strain on your muscles and joints.
This will eventually lead to poor posture and lasting aches and pain.
If you can’t wear them without changing how you walk or if you find they lead to pain, stop wearing them immediately.
Wearing New Shoes
Every pair of shoes needs a break-in period where you wear them for a few shorter walks before taking them on a long walk.
Wearing new shoes without a break in period can lead to aches and pains and blisters if you wear them on a long walk before breaking them in.
After 450 miles or 600 kilometers, your shoes might still look good but depending on the shoe, they are due for replacement.
No Need For Sports Drinks
Many walkers avoid sports drinks, either because of the taste or trying to avoid those high sugars and want to reduce the calories. For some these drinks might even upset their stomachs.
But sports drinks such as Powerade contain salts and sugars that your body needs to replenish lost fluids, especially in hot weather or a long distance run.
These ingredients also help your body absorb water faster to prevent dehydration, an essential for proper functioning.
Essentially, water is the best thing to drink when you have been working out, but not everyone likes water. If you are worried about consuming too much sugar but you do not want to drink water, a sugar-free sports drink can be a healthy alternative to rehydrate your body.
It’s So Easy, You Don’t Need to Train
What could go wrong, it’s just a brisk walk or a light jog, right?
Then the moment the race starts, you end up walking faster than planned in the excitement or to keep up with friends.
Soon you will feel the pain of shin splints or even develop blisters. That could lead to stress fracture or plantar fasciitis and you will need medical care.
You can avoid these if you take a few weeks to prepare and train with good form and build up your walking muscles.
Before you start a run, you need a good warm-up routine, which includes dynamic stretching to get the blood flowing.
The Good Advice
Train In Short Intervals
Jogging regularly is equivalent to training for an upcoming marathon or any other sports event.
The best way to start doing that is to jog for 5 minutes and take 20 seconds rest.
This interval training will help you jog longer and not get worn out.
Dehydration can also wear out your muscles. So, drink 2-4 liters of water per day.
Also, keep a small sipper with you when you jog so that you can keep yourself hydrated and do not give up quickly.
However, make sure you don’t drink too much water while jogging. Take a sip or two when you stop or walk to rest for 10-20 seconds.
Use Breathing Techniques
Breathing is the most important part of jogging. If you do not breathe at a particular rhythm, you will not be able to pump enough oxygen into your body.
Without enough oxygen, you’ll eventually feel fatigued, thereby preventing you from jogging for a long duration.
Count your steps and breathe in and out. For example, breathe in slowly through your nose for four steps and then exhale slowly through your nose for the next four steps.
Your Body Needs Time to Recover
Your first run went well and you want to head out again right away? But not so fast.
You should wait a day before attempting the next workout and your body needs the rest to recover from the first running session.
To avoid overuse injuries, your body must adapt to the new workout routine and prepare your cardiovascular system, muscles and bones for the next run.
Pounding your feet will only injure your knees.
So, it is important to land softly on the ground on the balls of your feet to dissipate the shock and not directly hit your knees.
It will also help you stay strong and jog for a longer duration than you expect yourself to.
When you finish your first jog, don’t suddenly stop. Instead, walk for another five minutes to cool down gradually.
Eventually after the workout, it is a great time to stretch and work on improving your flexibility because your muscles will be warmed up. It’s also a relaxing way to end a workout.
So there’s no reason why you shouldn’t jog, and it would be the best decision you have ever taken to include this simple exercise into your daily routine.
Get the right shoes and live healthy. Take care!