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Running Fitness Training Tips: A Guide for Beginners

27 Mar 2012

Are you taking up running to make progress with your fitness goals? Are you an aspiring newbie with your long-term goals set on traditional and/or obstacle races?

Whether you’re running for fitness or sport, this activity calls for more than just time on the treadmill or jaunts outdoors.

To make the most out of your run and to go from novice to veteran runner, you’ll need a fitness program that complements your running.

If you’re just starting up with running, read on for a guide that will help you prevent injuries, improve your running fitness, and outlast the competition (even if you’re racing against yourself)!


The Physical & Financial Demands of Running

Running Silhouettes

What do you need in order to be a runner? Physically, you’ll need lower body endurance, flexibility, core stabilization and strength, and mental toughness.

You’ll also need to invest in a good pair of running shoes and other optional fitness accessories.

Click here to find out more on the physical and financial demands of running.


Running Fitness Programs

Now that you have a good idea of the physical and financial tolls of running, it’s time to learn how to train to improve your running fitness.

If you have a trainer, he/she can put together a program customized for you. If you’re not ready yet to make the investment into additional instruction, you can complete running-specific workouts at home.


A beginning running workout doesn’t need to be complicated. You can focus on essential core and strength exercises that only require your bodyweight. This is convenient because you can complete this workout at home, outdoors, or even on the road when you’re travelling.

Click here for a running workout for beginners.


Intermediate Running Workout

The training plan for beginners listed above may get easy after some time. Once you’re body has adapted, it’s time to adjust some of the exercises and add some new ones to keep you challenged!

Click here for an intermediate workout routine that will complement your running program.

You can also complete this program at home. If it’s your first time with a structured exercise program, try to stick with the beginner’s program for 3-5 weeks before trying this intermediate plan.


If you’ve made it this far, congratulations!

This means you’ve been working on the beginner and intermediate running programs for 6-10 weeks. If you’ve been using these routines to complement your Couch-to-5k or other running program for newbies, then you may have completed those plans by now. Congrats twice over!

By now, you’ll need a new challenge to complement your running.

Click here for a new total body challenge you can complete at home! This workout is also customizable for obstacle racing if mud running is your long-term goal.

If you’re just looking to stay in good shape now that you’ve completed a running program, the full 20-exercise circuit is sure to raise your fitness level!


Flexbility: Foam Rolling Benefits for Runners

All that hard work training calls for some recovery and flexibility work. Enter the foam roll. If you’ve ever doubted the benefits of the foam roller in keeping you loose, limber, and injury-free, be sure to check out this post. You’ll learn more about the benefits and practice of foam rolling.


Running Nutrition Tips

You’ll need the proper nutrition to keep you energized for your running and total body workouts. A sound eating plan for running goes beyond the tradition of “three square meals.”


Running Participation

Just how many people participate in running? According to the Physical Activity Council, 50 million Americans run for recreation and leisure time.

If you’re interested in the numbers behind running participation, click here for an article that will interest you.


Training Time

Now you have a guide with at least three workouts and additional training tips to improve your running fitness.

It doesn’t matter if you are starting with a Couch-to-5k program or training with a novice plan by Hal Higdon. These tips will help you get the most out of your running.

To complement your running, work your way through this guide or just try one of the fitness programs!




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