Author Topic: Novice running  (Read 9103 times)

Novice running
« on: January 04, 2015, 08:12:49 pm »
I ran at school. Badly, and under pressure. I did it when absolutely required, but reluctantly, painfully and like I imagine a camel does*. I vowed I would never do it as an adult (except for the last bus; unrequited lover leaving for foreign shores, and; last orders).

However, on 30 December I woke up and went for a run. I'm still not quite sure why. I lay in bed thinking about it for a minute or two, and then did it. I should say that almost all of the best decisions in my life have been based on 2 minutes or less thinking, so there was a lot of precedent behind this, despite 34 years of observed vow.

Luckily, I had all the kit: a tshirt, a (cycling) fleece, (cycling) gloves, (cycling) tights and (cycling) socks. And some nondescript trainers.

And it was great. It was PAINFUL, slow, graceless, but it was exhilarating. And it was easy. I didn't have to check the tyre pressure or worry about lights. I didn't have to think when I'd last oiled the chain or whether I had a pump, tube, repair kit.

Let me be clear: I fell back in love with cycling 23 years ago and it was forever. I am not leaving my bikes/cycling. But I am suddenly realising that there might be another exercise. I'm not very good at it, but I have managed to get quite a bit better at it in just a few days. And it has been lovely. At running (well, slow jogging) pace I get to see a lot more than I do on a bike.

I also think that the things I hated about running might have been those things I had no control over. I was no good at running against my peers (asthma). And running was used as a punishment (Forgot your kit? Run around the pitch. Slow getting changed? Run around the pitch. Breached some hitherto unknown rugby rule? You've guessed it...).

Running at my own pace, without any pressure, on a crystal clear morning is something entirely different. I ran to the park and back on Tuesday. I did a circuit of it on Thursday. I did two circuits yesterday and again this morning. I'm slow and I have to stop frequently, but that only seems to add to the enjoyment**.

My goal is to run to work. It's something like 4 miles. I can ride it in 15 mins so I should be able to walk it in 60. If so, I don't see why I can't run it in, say 40 mins (even if I have to walk intermittently). Added to this is the fact that it is on a bus route so if it comes to the worst, I can get on a bus.

Does anyone have any tips? I never leave the house without water/a drink. My trainers are not great, but I'm looking into something more suitable. Is it just a question of going for it?

*In my head camels run inefficiently, limbs flailing - like Phoebe. I suppose it's probably the correct way to run where camels are from, but it always looks like bad design to me.

**This might be less enjoyable in the rain/wind/other rubbish weather
L'enfer, c'est les autos.

Re: Novice running
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2015, 09:58:44 pm »
Running is great.

Best tip is not to lose the simplicity. There's always someone trying to sell you something (special trainers etc) and you probably don't need it. Nowhere is that latter more true than in running.

Next tip is to build up slowly. It's quite easy to get injured in weeks 6 to 12 as your CV and muscles get ahead of the rest of your physiological adaptations.

Enjoy the freedom!

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Re: Novice running
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2015, 10:27:16 pm »
I'd agree, its good to build up slowly. Even if you are fit from cycling, you could injure yourself running too much too soon.
Look at a Couch to 5K plan. They start with walking for a minute or two, then running. Slowly increasing the time running. There is a good one from the NHS with podcasts etc. http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/c25k/Pages/couch-to-5k.aspx

I think it is worth getting some proper running shoes. They don't have to be too expensive, just go to a decent running shop and try on a few to see what fits.

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Re: Novice running
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2015, 10:30:01 pm »
Get trainers fitted at a run shop so they can advise of the best shoes given you gait.

Thought about doing Park Run? It's a timed 5 km run held Saturday morning, normally 9am start,, and free to enter. http://www.parkrun.org.uk  There are a few close-ish to you...
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Re: Novice running
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2015, 10:34:28 pm »
Chapeau to you. I hate running but I've kept trying to find some enjoyment in the activity over the last few years. These generally involved an annual 5km jog which left me hobbling around for the next few days so I wouldn't try again for another year. Finally this autumn I took a more sensible approach and tried to build up the distance and speed gradually. I managed 9 runs (well jogs really) over the course of a month and nearly enjoyed some of them, or at least didn't hate them quite as much as I should. I was trying to build up to a modest 30 minute 5km but I found I couldn't get over 3km without my calfs stiffening up to the extent I thought I'd end up doing cycle spoiling damage so my effort has lapsed once more. I thought if we had a prolonged icy spell I'd go jogging instead of cycling but now I've bought some studded tyres so that incentive is lost also.

If it works for you, good luck to you. Compared to cycling with loads of winter layers, there's no faff involved in going for a jog/run and you get a lot more value for a short time invested.

red marley

Re: Novice running
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2015, 10:50:25 pm »
Get trainers fitted at a run shop so they can advise of the best shoes given you gait.

+1 on the shoes advice. No other special equipment or clothing required for runs under 10k, but appropriate trainers made a huge difference for me (and I'm still a novice runner). I recommend one of the "Runners Need" shops that does free Gait Analysis, from which the staff can recommend the right type of shoe.

Re: Novice running
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2015, 11:16:32 pm »
Running is great.

Best tip is not to lose the simplicity. There's always someone trying to sell you something (special trainers etc) and you probably don't need it. Nowhere is that latter more true than in running.

Next tip is to build up slowly. It's quite easy to get injured in weeks 6 to 12 as your CV and muscles get ahead of the rest of your physiological adaptations.

Enjoy the freedom!
I can see how the bug could get you and make you overreach - it's just so easy to get out and do it. Luckily, I don't have the time to do it more than a little now and again. I'm planning just to enjoy it as I can.

I think it is worth getting some proper running shoes. They don't have to be too expensive, just go to a decent running shop and try on a few to see what fits.

Is there a difference between 'proper running shoes' and 'what fits'? My current trainers are bargain basement (and bought in the long "never going running" years). They fit but they've never had to run before. Is there such a thing as a real running shoe, and how much does it cost? I have several pairs of cycling shoes, none of which has cost me more than £45. Would 'proper' running shoes cost more?

Get trainers fitted at a run shop so they can advise of the best shoes given you gait.

A run shop?

Thought about doing Park Run? It's a timed 5 km run held Saturday morning, normally 9am start,, and free to enter. http://www.parkrun.org.uk  There are a few close-ish to you...

I'm not sure about the group running thing, but maybe.

Chapeau to you. I hate running but I've kept trying to find some enjoyment in the activity over the last few years. These generally involved an annual 5km jog which left me hobbling around for the next few days so I wouldn't try again for another year. Finally this autumn I took a more sensible approach and tried to build up the distance and speed gradually. I managed 9 runs (well jogs really) over the course of a month and nearly enjoyed some of them, or at least didn't hate them quite as much as I should. I was trying to build up to a modest 30 minute 5km but I found I couldn't get over 3km without my calfs stiffening up to the extent I thought I'd end up doing cycle spoiling damage so my effort has lapsed once more. I thought if we had a prolonged icy spell I'd go jogging instead of cycling but now I've bought some studded tyres so that incentive is lost also.

If it works for you, good luck to you. Compared to cycling with loads of winter layers, there's no faff involved in going for a jog/run and you get a lot more value for a short time invested.

We've approached it differently. I didn't want to do it, but I have found that (starting very humbly) I've been able to overcome my fear of running by doing it well within my capability. Yesterday my 8 year old joined me. He made the whole thing very different, and even more enjoyable. It was chance for us to be alone together for 30 minutes that we both enjoyed.

I'm not really thinking about speed yet. That might come, but for the moment I would just like to increase distance. I'll go with slowly and gently, and (for the moment) stick with circular routes so that the hobble home (if necessary) is as short as it can be.
L'enfer, c'est les autos.

Re: Novice running
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2015, 11:22:01 pm »
+1 on the shoes advice. No other special equipment or clothing required for runs under 10k, but appropriate trainers made a huge difference for me (and I'm still a novice runner). I recommend one of the "Runners Need" shops that does free Gait Analysis, from which the staff can recommend the right type of shoe.

Looks like Brum is the nearest. I'm sometimes there, but does anyone know if there's anything similar in Derby?
L'enfer, c'est les autos.

Re: Novice running
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2015, 11:31:42 pm »
"No matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everybody on the couch."

Re: Novice running
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2015, 11:45:55 pm »
A couple of observations on shoes for running.

The wrong ones can cause you an injury - I cannot wear (what are usually poorly descibed as) anti-pronation shoes.

But, there is surprisingly little research backing up the links drawn by manufacturers between gait and injury, and even less linkage suggesting that the specialist shoes help many people. (But see above, getting out of the wrong shoes may!)

The best research currently seems to suggest that comfortable shoes are good. Cushioning is both in and out of fashion at the moment - remember, feet and lower legs are designed to run and absorb the impact loading, but most of us have weak feet due to years of wearing stiff soled shoes and not actually running.

By all means get a gait analysis done, but buy something comfy. Don't worry too much about having lots of cushion, just be comfortable. You should feel you are running free, at least when you set off!


Re: Novice running
« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2015, 12:20:05 am »
http://www.parkrun.org.uk/darley/?
Thought about doing Park Run? It's a timed 5 km run held Saturday morning, normally 9am start,, and free to enter. http://www.parkrun.org.uk  There are a few close-ish to you...
I'm not sure about the group running thing, but maybe.

A couple of observations on shoes for running.

The wrong ones can cause you an injury - I cannot wear (what are usually poorly descibed as) anti-pronation shoes.

But, there is surprisingly little research backing up the links drawn by manufacturers between gait and injury, and even less linkage suggesting that the specialist shoes help many people. (But see above, getting out of the wrong shoes may!)

The best research currently seems to suggest that comfortable shoes are good. Cushioning is both in and out of fashion at the moment - remember, feet and lower legs are designed to run and absorb the impact loading, but most of us have weak feet due to years of wearing stiff soled shoes and not actually running.

By all means get a gait analysis done, but buy something comfy. Don't worry too much about having lots of cushion, just be comfortable. You should feel you are running free, at least when you set off!

Thanks, SM. All noted. I have a birthday coming up, so I'll be taking this advice with me.
L'enfer, c'est les autos.

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Re: Novice running
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2015, 08:40:00 am »
5km is too far for a beginner to run before they can run.
Thin people can progress faster than fat people (simple physics - your joints will take more of a battering). Make sure you can easily and without after effects walk as far as you're planning to run - how often do you walk for 4 miles? Sounds daft, but I'd always ride that distance and hardly ever did much walking before I tried running.
Get in to the habit of stretching afterwards straight away, particularly if you are a cyclist with a sedentary job. Your hamstrings are shorter than you think.
If your physio tells you that you shouldn't run, don't run. It actually will make it worse.
Park Run is not as intimidating as you might think. It's really inclusive and very motivating. I wasn't the slowest, and I was really slow

Enjoy. I'd started to really enjoy it, before it broke me.
TSS is not Total Sex Score, Chris!

Re: Novice running
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2015, 08:46:19 am »
'Shin splints' are the most likely problem you will get. They are damage to the fine ligaments that connect to the front of your shinbones. The cause is simply too much repetitive impact and the remedy is to start with short duration runs and build up very gradually, so that your body can adapt.

You can decide to be a shuffler (short fast steps) or a loper (maximum stride steps). For slow running, either work. Shuffling is a bit easier on your shins and knees.

Let your arms move. Relaxed hands are best.
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Re: Novice running
« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2015, 08:59:44 am »
Welcome afoot.   :)

There is online resource, couch to 5k.   It works.   In three months you should be able to complete your 'run' to the office if all goes well.

Just remember, it's for you, so take it easy and don't overdo it at any time.   If the body says no, listen and heed.   

Best of luck old boy.   :thumbsup:

Re: Novice running
« Reply #14 on: January 05, 2015, 12:26:57 pm »
+1 on the shoes advice. No other special equipment or clothing required for runs under 10k, but appropriate trainers made a huge difference for me (and I'm still a novice runner). I recommend one of the "Runners Need" shops that does free Gait Analysis, from which the staff can recommend the right type of shoe.

Looks like Brum is the nearest. I'm sometimes there, but does anyone know if there's anything similar in Derby?

J's had good service and advice in the past from http://www.running-fox.co.uk/ in Loughborough.  Looks like they do gait analysis too.

Re: Novice running
« Reply #15 on: January 05, 2015, 01:21:36 pm »
Two or three years ago, I decided to do a bit of running. I did a bit of googling on it and I was aware of the importance of building up slowly. Over a period of about 6 months or so I built up as gradually as thought appropriate to 10k. Not terribly fast but not embarrassingly slow either. Once I got the running muscles going and got control of my pace / breathing balance I found 10 k fairly easy.

So the date of my planned 10 km run (a duathlon) approached and I was running in Richmond Park, in the dark, up the slope that goes towards the ballet school. Noticed a pain in the heel. Over only about 100 - 150 m it got to the point where I could not run so I stopped. A few moments later I was in agony and could barely walk. I had no phone and the park was deserted. No money for a cab. Getting home to Kew was a real struggle. At that stage I could not bear to put any weight on that foot at all. None.

To cut a long story short, I had a complete fracture of my calcaneus, with all the associated diagnosis and recovery faff. It all turned out ok for me, but it often doesn't with these fractures or with achilles problems. You can easily find yourself going from running about as much as you like one day to having a permanent disability that affects everything that you do.

Two errors:

1. Not building up slowly enough. The problem is that if you have a bit of basic fitness from the bike and you are not too overweight, 10 km comes along pretty easily. It is very very easy to put aside the widely available advice on this point. It is even more important to pay attention to it when you are over about 40.

Edited to add:

1b. Poor running technique: heel strike. Very difficult to train yourself out of this.

2. Not having proper running shoes. I had good trainers, but there were not running shoes and they were getting on a bit. Running shoes need to be replaced regularly.

Be careful.

Re: Novice running
« Reply #16 on: January 05, 2015, 03:13:16 pm »
Couch 2 5 K

Couch to 5 K

COUCH TO 5 K !!!

I  can't say it often enough. The links are up thread. It starts you off slowly and eases you in gently. I started using the podcasts at the beginning of November and am currently on week 8 of the 9 week plan. I used to HATE running. I stopped running in February 1971 (after I fell in the river Tees in a school cross country race and swam the length of Abbey Rapids before I could find a way out - I finished the race damn near hypothermic, soaking wet and covered in blood). I vowed never to run again.

Now I'm loving it. As you say in your original post - it's the simplicity of just being able to get out. Just start out slowly and don't overreach.

Did I mention it? Look at C25K...

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Re: Novice running
« Reply #17 on: January 05, 2015, 05:14:01 pm »
Yup here's another voice to the DO IT SLOWLY advice.

I took up running a few years ago. I was all fit and muscly from cycling, I threw on an old pair of trainers, and thumped up and down the prom. A few weeks later ... shin splints. Took months to properly heal.

I have since had a trail-shoe-fit at a running shop and the trainers were the most comfortable (and third most expensive) pair of shoes I have ever owned. (1st: New Rock boots, 2nd: cycling shoes. I don't do girlie.)

However slow you think you need to build up to it ... go slower! I was following the Couch to 5KM programme but got overconfident (I'm a CYCLIST and therefore INVINCIBLE) and the crappy £10 "trainers" clearly did not help.

Re: Novice running
« Reply #18 on: January 05, 2015, 05:43:07 pm »
Hmm, this thread is semi-convincing me it might be good to try running again. I half-heartedly tried a bit on the treadmill over the summer, but it was SO DULL! I hated it: got to 5k and that was quite far enough. I don't find spinning bikes anywhere near as boring, though a proper bike ride is infinitely more satisfying.

May have to try running in the actual outside to see whether it's any better. :-\

Re: Novice running
« Reply #19 on: January 05, 2015, 06:01:31 pm »
See also this thread https://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=63370.msg1318328#msg1318328 which, via the popular C25K scheme, got me running 27 months or so ago.
It was the C25K scheme which really got me going.
These days I do Parkrun most Saturdays and get a couple of more runs in at lunchtimes.
The only problem is that I don't get as much cycling in as I used to.
"No matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everybody on the couch."

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Re: Novice running
« Reply #20 on: January 05, 2015, 06:06:42 pm »
My fault,  but whenever I see C25K I read it as
"about 25km "
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Re: Novice running
« Reply #21 on: January 05, 2015, 06:24:16 pm »
5km is too far for a beginner to run before they can run.

True. Worth looking for a parkrun that's two laps of a course rather than out and back, so you can bale out after the first lap if you don't feel up to the whole distance.

Quote
Park Run is not as intimidating as you might think. It's really inclusive and very motivating. I wasn't the slowest, and I was really slow

Seconded. The inclusivity really is the best thing about parkrun.

Paul, I was like you in that I took up running a few years ago having not done any for a long, long time (mainly because I hated it), and it was discovering parkrun that really changed my outlook and made me start to genuinely enjoy running.

Re: Novice running
« Reply #22 on: January 05, 2015, 08:43:12 pm »
We have had people who've done the full nine weeks of the C25K then done a Parkrun as their first 'proper' on-their-own-without-the-podcast run. There was one woman on Saturday who'd done just that and was feeling so proud of the achievement.

My fault,  but whenever I see C25K I read it as
"about 25km "
Know what you mean!
"No matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everybody on the couch."

Kim

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Re: Novice running
« Reply #23 on: January 05, 2015, 08:52:03 pm »
Hmm, this thread is semi-convincing me it might be good to try running again.

It was convincing me of the opposite.   ;D

The only running I do these days is running away.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Novice running
« Reply #24 on: January 05, 2015, 09:46:57 pm »
Hmm, this thread is semi-convincing me it might be good to try running again.

It was convincing me of the opposite.   ;D

It's done a fairly good job of convincing me that buying some running shoes, going round the park a couple of times, then finding my local parkrun would not be a good idea.

Quote
The only running I do these days is running away.

I try not even to do that.