Well, my wife and I finished our first full marathon last Sunday! We ran the Little Rock Marathon in 4 hours and 13 minutes. It seems like not long ago that we started running. Since this is my first blog, I thought I would write a little about how I got into running and some of the basic tips I wish I would have known when I started.
I started running when I came to college as a way to lose weight. It worked! Since I started running 5 years ago I have lost 47 pounds. When I first started, I would run 1 minute, walk thirty seconds. I slowly started increasing the time I ran in between walking until I could run 2 miles at one time. After that, I added about 5 minutes or so at a time until I could run 6 miles non-stop.
I definitely recommend taking it slow when you first begin. I made the mistake of trying to increase mileage too soon and my legs begin to rebel (in particular my Iliotibial Band (ITB); http://www.itbs.info/). Also, something I learned along the way is to avoid landing on your heels. Doing so puts more stress on your legs and knees and can cause a long list of annoying pains. Instead, land on your mid-foot and increase the number of times your feet hit the ground per minute (foot cadence). I fully believe this is what helped me overcome ITB pain to train for the marathon.
Matt Frazier of “No Meat Athlete” blog does a great job of explaining how to train your legs to turn-over faster http://www.nomeatathlete.com/180-steps-per-minute/.
For some of the more experienced runners who may read this, what are some tips you wish you would have known when you started running?
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