But now you’ve noticed something…you are sore as hell!
|I thought this was supposed to be fun!?!?|
Running is a high-impact activity that takes a physical toll on your body. Every time you take a stride you are engaging muscles throughout your body. If you haven’t run or worked out in a while, those muscles are going to need time to develop and strengthen. You cannot realistically expect to jump into the sport and just magically have the same fitness level as a Meb Keflezighi, Usain Bolt or Kara Goucher.
On top of using new muscles, every time your foot strikes the ground your body is taking an impact from the pavement (or track, or treadmill, or trail, you decide). There are a lot of factors that come into play here, but the two biggest factors boil down to running form and shoes. The first factor can be difficult to diagnose and correct. I suggest finding a running coach to work with for pointers on stride, cadence, and basically learning how to run properly. This might sound pricey and unrealistic, but many local running groups have certified coaches that work with runners for free. There are also charity groups such as Team in Training (TNT) that have coaches available to all participants who help raise money for their cause.
The second factor, shoes, is much easier to correct than running form, but arguably just as important. Finding the right pair of shoes can be tricky, which is why I HIGHLY suggest taking a trip to an actual running store to get a good fit and to try on a variety of shoes. Don’t settle for buying a cheap pair of sneakers from Walmart, Dick’s, or Target; the investment you make now will pay large dividends later by increasing the comfort of your runs, your susceptibility to injury, and may even be the difference between staying with running or quitting. In the Baltimore area there are tons of great options (Charm City Run, Falls Road Running, Road Runner Sports, and Boston Street Running, among others). A simple Google search of your area will almost certainly return similar results.
|My advice: Find a model you like and stick with it!|
Your body will adjust; just give it the time, training and equipment it needs to be successful!
A final note: Understand the difference between soreness and pain. If you have soreness that will not go away, sharp pains, or pain that noticeably alters the way you walk and run, consider resting for several days or even weeks. If the pain continues, CONSULT A DOCTOR! Running through an injury is a prime way to make any injury worse. It can make the total time to heal much longer, and it can even lead to permanent damage. Don’t let your pride get in the way of being a successful athlete and runner!