Tuesday, 15 May 2018

LET'S START RUNNING


People always ask me how and why I started running - usually friends who I have known a long time and who know I never used to run, or people who want to try and start but just don’t believe they can. Well I’m here to prove that anyone can, because I have gone from ‘runaphobe’ to marathoner. It hasn’t been easy, running is hard…but it’s something I now love and enjoy sharing with others!



THE WHY...

I have always been into keeping fit, usually through dancing, yoga, spin, body pump and the typical gym stuff, but I avoided the treadmill and any running at all costs. It just never appealed and I assumed I wasn’t ‘built’ like a runner so there wasn’t any point (FYI any body is a runners body!) However, living in Hong Kong where gym memberships would set you back 800HKD a month (and some) made me rethink my options to keep my fitness up. I bought some e-book guides with HIIT workouts, and one included running once a week, building from a walk/run to running for 20 minutes. I could barely run between lampposts and really disliked it, but when I saw gradual improvements it surprised me. My day job was exhausting and I needed to find an external challenge to focus on so that I wasn’t constantly thinking about work.

THAT BRINGS ME TO THE HOW…

I signed up to a 10k race and decided to raise some money for charity alongside the training as motivation to keep it up. I stuck to a plan I found online and was in complete shock when I completed the race! 1 mile seemed impossible at the start of the training, then 5k crept up on me and before I knew it the 10k felt tough, but doable! That was my hook, I signed up for a half marathon that evening and 18 months on can proudly say I am now a marathon runner!

You don’t need to sign up to a marathon to start running, you don’t ever need to run a marathon if it doesn’t appeal to you! Start small, build up to a mile then try a 5k plan, or if you feel ready why not attempt a 10k? Women’s Running have a fantastic race series on this summer which is perfect for all levels and a great opportunity for those who want to try running! They have a 1 mile race which is perfect for the whole family and a 5k and 10k option too, all on beautiful routes with the added bonus of goodies and of course a medal at the end too! You can check out the various dates and locations here…I’m hoping I can make it to the Nottingham 10k and it would be great to see some of you there!






I’m sure I don’t need to tell you all about the physical benefits of exercise, but the mental health wins are beneficial too! Increased energy levels, better sleep and endorphins all help to reduce anxiety, depression and stress levels. I advocate any exercise or movement, especially in a way that YOU enjoy. That might not be running, or it might just be and you haven’t given it a chance. I promise you….I HATED running, but it has honestly proven to me that the only limits we have are the ones we set ourselves. Running might just be that challenge you are looking for. Here are some beginners 5k and 10k plans provided by Women’s Running which will get you race ready. There is also a great plan on progressing from 5k to 10k in this months issue.

It’s never too late to try something new, and getting a group of you together can make it all the more fun! Let me know if you decide to start running this summer as I would love to know how you find it…likewise if you are racing! It’s great to see so many people getting outdoors, moving, enjoying themselves and keeping active!

Livvy



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