Fashion / Fitness

Wellness Wednesday. 26: How To Start Running When You Are A Beginner

How To Start Running When You Are A Beginner: lifestyle and fashion blogger alexis belbel sharing her tips on running for beginners, tips on exercises to do for running, and more |

If you are all new here, we had both set a goal to run our first half marathon this year. We are definitely not major runners, and don’t typically run for our workouts, but we had always wanted to accomplish a race, and we did it! We actually ran a 10K a little over two years ago, and really enjoyed it. We are not sure if we will run any other races, but this was a good start!

To start with, we had actually signed up for a race that was originally scheduled for April 25th 2020. We were so excited and had trained for four months, but sadly, due to Coronavirus, it was cancelled. We both decided that we would still try to run on our original race date, even though we weren’t going to have the “true” race experience.

We ended up running it, and despite having knee pain during half of it, we finished it and met our goal!

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How To Start Running When You Are A Beginner: lifestyle and fashion blogger alexis belbel sharing her tips on running for beginners, tips on exercises to do for running, and more |

If you’re just a beginner, like we were, we wanted to share our experience, as well as what worked for us, and what did not. In case you didn’t have a chance to listen to our podcast all about our training schedule, you can listen here.

How long did you train for?

We trained for about 4 months. We were not running more than 2-3 times per week, so that is why we started early. We wanted to still be able to do get in other workouts we love like rebounding and pilates.

How did you start training?

We were already in pretty good shape before running. We had mentioned earlier that we had ran in a 10K race a few years ago. Since we were already jumping on our rebounder pretty much 5-6 days a week, we were used to doing some sort of cardio. Once we began training, we started out running 2-3 miles twice a week, and then built up weekly from there. The slower you start, the better.

You also really want to pay attention to your pace. You don’t need to be running super fast miles, especially if you’re not trying to beat some sort of time.

Did you follow a specific training plan?

One of our friends suggested using the Nike Run Club app, but we just kind of did our own thing. There are so many good apps to use. See below of our training plan.

What was your training schedule and mileage breakdown? Did you do any sprints?

We started out running 2-3 miles, 2-3 times a week for the first few weeks. After that, we would run about 3 miles twice a week, and then do our longer run on the weekends. The longer runs started out at about 3.5 miles and then we increased our mileage each week by 0.5 a mile. So as an example, it would look like:

Monday: run 3 miles, Wednesday: run 3 miles, Saturday: run 3.5 miles

Monday: run 3 miles, Wednesday: run 3 miles, Saturday: run 4.0 miles

Monday: run 3 miles, Wednesday: run 3 miles, Saturday: run 4.5 miles

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How To Start Running When You Are A Beginner: lifestyle and fashion blogger alexis belbel sharing her tips on running for beginners, tips on exercises to do for running, and more |

What are your favorite running shoes, and why?

We have a few favorites that we personally run in. Alexis runs in the Brooks Glycerin 17s, and Sam runs in the New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v10. We sized up an entire size (size 7.5) because your feet swell. We also use these insoles that helped a lot.

See more of our favorite running shoes in this post.

**It is very important to go to a running store that specializes in recommending the proper running shoes for YOUR feet and body. Try to find a place that analyzes your foot. The reason we chose our shoes was that they were recommended to us at a running store, and we prefer more padding in our shoes, rather than a flatter shoe. It all depends on preference, and some shoes that work for some, may not work as well for others.

{ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 }

What is the best way to start if I have never been a runner?

Our biggest tip is to start slowly. Don’t worry about how fast you’re running, or how far you can run.

We also suggest using the run/walk method. For example, you can try to run for 2-3 minutes, and walk for 1 minute, or adjust as needed. Repeat that pattern until you reach 20-30 minutes, and increase the minutes of running each week.

Another big thing is to take time off. Don’t put too much pressure on your body, especially if you’re feeling tired.

Going from HIIT classes with a treadmill to the pavement has been hard. Any tips to help with feet/body?

We totally get it! Our knees take a beating running on the pavement We definitely suggest finding a place to run that has a track-like surface, or if you’re able to, run on track! We also suggest switching up the surfaces like grass, dirt, pavement, etc.

Does it matter where your foot strikes first: heel, mid, or toe?

We are not experts, but from what we have read, landing on the center of your foot helps to reduce the strain on lower leg muscles and also alleviate the impact.

What do you eat before a run and after a run?

We eat a lot of fruit and carbs before a run. Usually we will eat a bowl of frozen wild blueberries with almond milk, a banana, and 1-2 apples. We also would pack these raw honey packets to eat on our longer runs.

The day of our half marathon, we ate a banana, 2 apples, and a bowl of organic oatmeal with the blueberries on top.

What are your running must haves?

We actually listed most of our running must haves in this post, but some of our go to’s are:

lifestyle and fashion blogger alexis belbel sharing her running must haves: brooks glycerin sneakers, running socks, lululemon running shorts, foam roller, high impact sports bra, flipbelt running belt , apple watch  |

{ Running Belt | Workout Tanks | Apple Airpods | Pink Rain Jacket | Apple Watch | Garmin Watch | Neon Fresh Foam Sneakers | Brooks Glycerin | Cloudflow Sneakers | Black Jacket | Lululemon Running Shorts | Camo Leggings | Black High Impact Sports Bra | Knee Braces | Foam Roller | Glitter Pepper Spray | Massage Gun | Running Socks }

We also have some running gear for rainy weather in this post.

lifestyle and fashion blogger alexis belbel sharing running gear for the rain for her: rain jackets from lululemon, cropped leggings, shorts, running sneakers from brooks, new balalnce, and tops for running |

{ Black Rain Jacket | Green Rain Jacket | Black Pullover | Black Fleece Pullover | Camo Cropped Leggings | Grey Leggings | Running Shorts | Black Baseball Cap | On Running Shoes | Brooks Sneakers | New Balance Sneakers | Running Socks | Swift Short Sleeved Top | Pink Tank }

Do you listen to any playlists when you’re running?

Yes! We have a running playlist on Spotify we listen to! Let us know if you have any recommendations.

Any remedies for knee pain?

We suggest seeing a physical therapist if you have any sharp knee pains. If you are suffering from runner’s knee, we suggest icing your knees with this freeze sleeve. Also, foam rolling your IT bands and legs helps a lot. You can also incorporate hip strengthening exercises with resistance bands to even out any imbalances you may have.

Do you take any supplements for your joints?

We take Leefy Organics which we LOVE for inflammation. We also suggest using CBD cream, or you can use some essential oils.

What is your go to sweat-proof sunscreen for running?

Some of our favorite sweat-proof sunscreens are this Thinksport and Coola. The Thinksport sunscreen is waterproof, so it is perfect for running and sweating and it is EWG certified (free of harmful chemicals).

Coola is another good option and is organic and broad-spectrum.

What was your favorite part of training?

Our favorite part of training was seeing how much our bodies could accomplish if we set our mind to it. Your body is truly capable of anything. Also, just growing to *actually* enjoy running and how it can clear your mind and open your eyes to nature and seeing other people outside.

*click image to shop*

How To Start Running When You Are A Beginner: lifestyle and fashion blogger alexis belbel sharing her tips on running for beginners, tips on exercises to do for running, and more |

How do you slowly build up at 5 miles? I die after 3.

We would suggest running slowly (at a slower pace). We always say, “slow and steady!” We also recommend running and walking together. We suggest running for 1-4 minutes, and then walking for 1-2 minutes and repeating. As you practice more, you can make the running interval longer, and the walking interval shorter.

Also, doing what we did, and slowly increasing your mileage each week helps a lot. Even if you’re only increasing by 0.1 or 0.2 miles each week.

Have you tried the Peleton outdoor runs? If so, did you like it?

We have not personally tried the outdoor runs, but we LOVE their yoga and strength workouts.

What are some strength exercises for non-runners we can do before starting to run to prevent injury?

We recommend doing the following exercises bodyweight, or with light weights or resistance bands:

  • clamshells
  • glute bridges
  • lying leg raises
  • squats
  • lunges
  • planks
  • stability ball leg curls
  • calf raises
  • single leg deadlifts
  • hip abductions

Have you always liked running or was it an acquired taste?

It was definitely an acquired taste. We don’t really “love” running. A lot of people love it because it clears their heads, but for us, every second of running felt like a lifetime, especially on the longer runs.

There were some days, like anything else, that we would dread going on runs, but other days, the run would be amazing, and we would feel so accomplished after finishing it. It is so nice to be outside in nature, especially when it is the perfect weather. It is also really fun to go with a partner, whether it is your spouse, friend, sibling, etc. Sometimes, it is really therapeutic to go alone, and have some quality alone time.

Do you think you will do another race?

That’s a tough question to answer. We really wanted to experience a “true” race, but we were in so much pain during our half from our knees, that it would be hard to put our bodies through that again. We were in great cardio shape, which is why it is so frustrating. We are thinking we would do a 10K or 5K.

How often do you run now?

We haven’t ran again since our half marathon (about 2.5 weeks ago). We are giving our bodies a break right now, but are still working out. We think we will run a couple miles here and there, but nothing super long.

Best advice for getting back into running?

Our advice would be to start back slowly. Similar to our tips we shared earlier, we would suggest doing a combination of running/walking and to create some sort of running schedule or plan to stay accountable.

We also recommend upping your lower body workouts to build strength, and to stay patient with yourself as you get back into the swing of things.

When does running become easier?

We think it is always hard, but you get adjusted and more used to it after a few weeks and months. Trust us, there are days where your runs just suck, or you’re not feeling it, even if you’re an experienced runner. We think you learn to actually enjoy it as time goes on, which makes it easier.

Also, strengthening your legs with different exercises (see previous question) will help you runs feel easier.

Other tips:

  • be patient with yourself: this takes time and practice, so give yourself time and allow yourself to get into a groove.
  • know that runs can be good and not so good, and that is okay.
  • track your progress: we love being able to track all our previous runs and seeing how our pace, cadence, and other factors improved, or didn’t.
  • watch your heart rate: you don’t want to burn yourself out, so monitor your heart rate on each run to be sure it doesn’t get too high.