Being an amateur runner, and learning a lot about running through trial and error, I thought I would pen down what I feel are the Running Essentials for anyone who wants, to start running. Of course if you are planning hard core training, You need a proper trainer etc, this article however is about stuff that you need and things that you must keep in mind once you decide or want to start running.
I took to running pretty gradually, it started with brisk walking to maintain weight, and i soon realized that it was easier to jog, than walk fast… so there I was a running, and the rest they say is history 😛 Well not that dramatic, but yes, that was the beginning for me.
I soon realized that there is no magic that a cream or serum can do, when compared to the glow after a good run. Running (the right amount) and Glow go hand in hand 🙂
Good Quality Shoes
If you have decided to run, the first thing that you must invest in, is obviously good quality shoes. A lot of stores even do Gait Analysis which can help you figure out what kind of shoes will be good for you. In the past I have bought shoes for silly reasons “They were hot pink” and realized soon enough that they were blistering my feet out and very painful to run in. I prefer shoes with pronounced cushioning and in the past have used Nike’s Air Max, Vomero and Free and they have worked very well for me.
If you intend to be serious about your run, then take the plunge and buy a good pair, but they are expensive so be sure about what your needs are, and most attendants at the store can help you with that, because you don’t want to shell out 7-8K on a pair and be stuck with something that does you more harm than good. You either give up with a bad experience or you have to buy another shoe, and cough up a small fortune.
While most forms of exercise begin with the intrinsic desire to lose / maintain weight. It is imperative to eat right when you run. One tends to make the mistake of I will eat less and run more, unfortunately the math doesn’t work out in this case. While I did not put on weight, I did not lose any either, just felt low on energy and that of course affected my performance and will to run. I simply stick to the basics – Avoid fried food, adequate Carbs, Protein and Fat in the diet. I use the Calorie Counter App to keep a tab on the break up. I know it’s not 100% accurate but overall I feel it keeps me on track.
So eat healthy and eat enough. Also add supplements to your diet, especially Iron, Vitamin C, E, Calcium. I just know that I have more energy to run well when I am regular with my supplements. Ideally though you must consult your physician to know what supplements you Must take.
Who amongst us doesn’t like to dress up?? However, it is important to dress right when you run. Non intrusive, sweat absorbent, adequate support if you are a woman and comfortable and clothes that don’t cause chafing. Generous slathering of Vaseline usually prevents this. Use vaseline on your feet as well, before you go to sleep, ensures you will have soft feet too #sidetip – less friction = less soreness = more comfortable while running.
While I love the pretty & dainty ankle length socks in every colour, I recommend that you wear sweat absorbing, thicker socks that can prevent friction and therefore blisters and soreness of the foot. Today brands like Nike even make Blister preventing socks, so if you see that as a problem, then you must get yourself one of those.
If you are running outdoors, Suncreen is a MUST.However, for better or for worse, you will have a permanent tan line, thanks to the Sports Bra, and you will look like you are back from a beach vacation. I use either Neutrogena or Nivea both have a very high SPF and I think it works well.
Track That Run
Ok… so if you are taking all that effort to Run, then you must have something that helps you know how far you have run, how efficiently you run, and so on and so forth. You can either get yourself a wearable device like a garmin or simply download an app on your phone. Both work on GPS so that it can track how much you have run and at what speed. A good App is as good as having a trainer with you… that is if you have your technique in place.
I use a very basic Garmin watch or the Nike Plus App.
Thank You For The Music
I cannot stress on the importance of music when I run. There is no formula here, I think you need to find what works for you. I don’t think my playlist could work for anyone, as the range of music is bizzare it swings from 80s Ilayaraja, Current Bollywood, Madonna, Beatles, Yogi B to Meghan Trainor in 20 mins!!!! so find your music-ispiration and have enough to play around with
Once you are all prepped up, the world is your playground – ummm NOT! Find your route, preferably a park or soft ground, concrete is not the best thing for your legs, but all runners say that and then get on the road! However, mark out your route mentally so that you know where you are going broadly… and once you are out there are a few things to watch out for
If you intend to go out for a run pretty early (i.e before 6.30 am) then be prepared for poop on the road, any time later than that cars or bikes would have run over them…but the best way is to align your gaze to cover the ground in front of you and vehicles coming at you.
This is one thing most women are used to, but a woman running or sweating it out is only going to bring the creep out in people, so don’t let that bother you much, on most days a questioning gaze can ward them off. I also try and say hello and try to be familiar with the regular faces that I see, so in case I need to get in a fight there is some support!
Running can be a group activity or an individual sport, whatever it means to you, like any sport you must take take certain measures to ensure that you have a smooth run too. I have tried to share some knowledge with you and I hope that some of my advice could help anyone who is reading this. I would be happy to hear what you guys think too… I found a lot of happiness and joy in my running story, I hope you do too 🙂