1. Running is hard. We’ve all seen the magical runner gliding down the street making it look effortless. Running isn’t easy. It’s down right hard work. But once you get started, find a flow, it does get easier. In the beginning, the thought of running one continuous mile seemed impossible. Conditioning of the body and the mind will happen if you stick with it.
2. Running is not a cheap sport. When you start running, you think all I need is shoes, bottoms, tops, and a sports bra (for the ladies) to run. While that’s very true, you will find yourself at some point wanting more. A GPS watch, more shoes, more gear for every possible weather event, hydration systems, fuel belts, mid run fuel, running magazine subscriptions and let’s not forget race entries. Running is not cheap.
3. Never say never when it comes to running a marathon or an ultramarathon. I don’t know how many friends I have heard say they will NEVER run a marathon or further. And then guess what? They do. Marathons were always at the back of my mind but ultras…I’m not sure I can go there. But you never know.
4. Running with others will make you a stronger runner. When I first started running, I ran mostly by myself. But then I decided to run with a group for occasional training runs. They motivated me to get out of my comfort zone. I learned that I could actually run faster than I thought I could.
5. Your digestive system may go crazy once you start logging more miles. When I started upping my mileage training for my first half marathon, I found that my tummy was unhappy a lot mid run or post run. But as time went on, my digestive system, along with everything else, got conditioned to the mileage.
6. What works for your friend will not necessarily work for you. Just because a certain type of shoe or mid run fuel works for your friend, doesn’t mean it will work for you. Get properly fitted for a shoe. Do the work in finding a fuel that works just for you. One size does not fit all.
7. Running is way more mental than muscle. Of course you need to train your muscles to successfully run but training your brain is just as important. I don’t know how many times my brain has run out of energy before my body while running.
8. Don’t just run. Variety is what will keep you running longer. I love running but I can not run 7 days a week. I need to do other forms of exercise to counter balance my running muscles otherwise I’m on the injured reserve list. Yoga, cycling, weights, CrossFit, swimming, Barre, whatever it is that you enjoy, do it in addition to running to keep you body balanced and hopefully injury free.
9. There will be some runs that suck and make you want to quit running. Everyone has horrible running days. If you know someone who doesn’t, they are lying. When it happens, all you can do is shake it off and move on to the next run. It will get better.
10. Running is way more than just exercise. At some point running switched over from being a way to stay in shape to just being a part of who I am.
What is something you wish someone would have told you before you started running?