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Every year, millions of people take to the roads and trails in their communities hoping to fall in love with running, feel healthier, and shed a little weight in the process. That first step is easy, but sticking with it is the hardest step. Staying committed is the result of major willpower and knowing the mechanics of running for weight loss.
The following 10 tips are key in helping beginners stay committed and learn how to run to lose weight:
If you’re looking for a low-cost, high-impact activity to help you lose a few extra pounds, few can go toe-to-toe with running. In this guide, we'll run you through all 10 beginner tips on how to run to lose weight. By the end of reading this, you'll be ready to hit the road and stick with it.
If you're jumping into this thinking it's going to be a walk in the park, you should know it's not that at all. Running is tough. It'd have to be or else everyone would do it. You're going to feel tired like you can't take one more step. Your body is going to ache and cry with pain.
And what nobody talks about is how you're going to get bored running. It's a two-front war - tugging at your brain and body.
But never give in.
It's a mental game as much as it is physical, but you need both if you're going to stick it out. And just like iron sharpens iron, improving one will profoundly enhance the other.
These 10 tips are going to make you aware of what's coming your way, give you some strategies to stay focused and stay in form, and help you reach your fitness goals.
Don't get us wrong, new shoes are the best, but there's no need to grab a snazzy pair of expensive running shoes with all the latest gadgets in them. As long as your trainers aren't super old or falling apart, your current pair of shoes will do just fine.
Many beginning runners do mental gymnastics to convince themselves a new pair of sneakers is going to make them better runners, and the investment is going to help them stick with it longer.
Do you know what will make you a better runner? Getting out there and running.
Buying a new pair of shoes is going to take away from producing, it's going to make you think about running a lot, but it's not going to make you run. And thinking about running without actually doing it is going to reduce your motivation.
Once you’ve started running for 66 days or longer, then it's a good time to consider some new kicks. The timing is important because on average,it takes 66 days of doing a new behavior consistently to become a lasting habit, which includes physical exercise.
If you decide to make the purchase, be sure to go to a running store that can properly fit you and give you the best advice for your needs. Buying the wrong type of sneaker could lead to injuries.
So take your time, and focus on running, after you've shown yourself you can do this, reward yourself with some brand-new running shoes.
You know the saying, Rome wasn't built in a day. And it couldn't be any truer for running. You won't be entering the Boston Marathon anytime soon, so take it slow!
We want you to begin by running at a slower-than-normal pace, even if it takes discipline to go slower than you normally would. We also want you to go short distances once you begin. By going on slow and short runs at the start, you'll build confidence through completion.
Try that out for a week or so. If that feels good, add a bit more distance next time and your confidence will continue to build.
Then you can start to mix things in during your run, like alternating between walking, jogging, and faster running. Do this until your body adapts and you feel more powerful and comfortable with your legs and breathing.
Starting slow will ensure you don’t get discouraged too easily and will help your body adapt to its new activity. It's a win-win.
The most important thing to remember when you get started with running is to keep your eyes looking forward. Don't be a shoegazer! You're going to hurt yourself if you do that.
It's easy to get tense and think about your body while you're moving, but try to stay as relaxed as possible. There are physiological reasons to do this, but in general,staying relaxed is going to improve your form and help you run faster.
Once you get comfortable with those two pieces of running, you can work on making sure your arms are swinging through your hips and your feet land directly beneath you. There's no need for high knees while running!
There are a lot of mechanical things to keep in mind, but if you can focus your gaze ahead as you get started, you'll have the foundational piece of running in a good spot.
If you’re new to running, try outdoors first before you hit the treadmill. The beauty of nature can help put things into perspective while also motivating you to stay active longer or push yourself harder during your run!
There are quite a few reasons to run outdoors whenever you can:
Once you’ve mastered your stride and built up some leg strength, feel free to hit the treadmill on those rainy days. So lace up those sneakers and hit the trails to get started and opt for outdoor runs whenever possible!
We know a thing or two about this one. Ladies, this is an essential piece of equipment when you take on any high-intensity activity like running. Whether your bust is little or bountiful, wearing the right supportive bra is key to a good run.
We'd argue that wearing the best high-impact sports bra is just as important, if not more so, than wearing the right shoes for running. As a beginner, you need the confidence to keep going. And that starts with a bra that supports you, feels good, looks attractive (because who doesn’t want to look good while they run?), and doesn't distract you from your mission.
Go with SHEFIT's Ultimate Sports Bra - it's the perfect solution for your running needs. Its patented adjustability is designed to give women the optimal fit by supporting them from all angles. Their multi-way sports bra allows you to configure the bra in two ways – across your back (in an x) or over the shoulder. The result? No bounce while you run – giving you the freedom to focus on your stride!
We aren't just slinging high-impact sports bras at you either - regardless of breast size, the Ultimate Sports Bra has been proven to reduce or eliminate any pain women may experience from bouncing. All athletes need support, whether beginner or experienced and our Ultimate Sports Bra is an important part of it.
If you're thinking about going from spicy taco Tuesday at lunch straight to a 30-minute run, you need to read this section.
Try to avoid running right after a big meal or when you’re starving.Your body needs the right amount of fuel to keep you going during your run, but not too much where you feel weighed down.
About an hour to two hours before you set out, eat a light snack or meal made up of simple carbs. Oatmeal, a banana, a bagel, or another kind of bread will do the trick. Try not to eat anything spicy as it can promote indigestion or anything high in fiber as it can weigh you down.
Boredom can play tricks on your mind when it comes to trying something new - like running. It's one of the most common complaints about the activity due to its repetitive motion. Being bored or lacking excitement is a big demotivator - so you need to have a few strategies to combat it.
Here are some thought starters:
Running can also be a great stress reliever and can help you clear your head after a busy day at the office, but you have to keep your mind occupied by any means necessary to continue making progress.
You should do a proper warm-up and cool-down every time out.
A true warm-up consists of dynamic stretching - which will literally warm your body and muscles up while stretching them at the same time. This usually consists of light exercise that doesn't evaporate your energy. Leg circles, a brisk 5-minute walk, or even a super light jog will do the trick.
This isn't to be confused with static stretching, which is the classic type of stretching we all learned in primary school. The kind where your body doesn't move and you just move your limbs and feel the stretch. Static stretching is best used as part of your cool-down! You will want to do a light walk into the static stretches though.
Target your calf muscles, thighs, glutes, and IT bands for this. Your body will thank you later. This is all about preventing injury as well as soreness - both are motivation killers.
You need to eat something after your run - and you have a pretty tight window (1 hour) to get food in your body so you can fuel the building and repairing of your muscles. This is the key to increasing your strength and future endurance.
Eat a snack or meal with some protein and carbohydrates like chocolate milk, greek yogurt, or a banana with peanut butter. Ortry one of our matcha berry smoothies for weight loss - it's packed with the protein, carbs, and healthy fats you need to make gains.
Eating smart is an important key to self-improvement and weight loss - so don't skip it after your workout!
Your body needs anywhere from7-10 ounces of water for every 10-20 minutes of a workout. It's easy to forget during a workout, but it's borderline criminal to forget after.
So if you take on a running sweat session, you have to replenish those lost fluids. Add an extra glass or two throughout the day if you have any concerns - it will go a long way to keeping you adequately hydrated.
Running is a great way to burn calories without breaking the bank. But it's not the only way. So if you want to add some variety to your weight loss journey, or maybe substitute a run day with something different, we've compiled a list of 3 amazing workouts that won't cost you an arm and a leg to do.
You know that running can help you lose weight, but what about high-intensity running? It's certainly not the type of running a beginner should start with, but if you break that 66-day mark of consistently running, this is a great alternative to give a shot.
Rather than focusing on distance, high-intensity running focuses on sprint intervals, which will help you burn more calories in a shorter amount of time than continuous running. This is great for burning calories and body fat - it's surprisingly more effective at trimming belly fat than ab exercises.
All you need here is a kettlebell or a dumbbell and you're well on your way to a great workout. Kettlebells are a great way to lose weight and tone muscles because they combine cardio, strength training, and fat burning all in one.
Even a quick 20-minute workout can be effective if done as a circuit. In addition, if you're looking for an extra challenge,kettlebell half marathons have been proven to be more intense than running on a treadmill.
CrossFit workouts are an effective option for fat loss that you can do anywhere, even from home. Studies have shown that high-intensity training such as CrossFit can improve strength and cardio conditioning faster than forms of continuous training, like jogging.
CrossFit’s high-intensity workouts force the body to work harder, and burn more calories, while the constantly varied aspect keeps the body guessing and aids in further fat loss.
Losing weight is more than just working out all the time, and it's certainly not about starving yourself. While exercise is important, nutrition plays an equally crucial role. After all, weight gain and weight loss ultimately boil down to how many calories you consume and burn in a day.
When it comes to losing weight, remember to eat healthy and in the right portions. Eating a balanced diet with natural foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats will help you achieve your goals faster while also keeping you energized during workouts.
Here are a few of our favorite foods that taste great, support an appropriate caloric intake, and boost any type of physical activity, including running.
Beets in their powdered form are a perfect way to naturally and effectively increase energy performance during exercise. With nitrates that convert to nitric acid, this supplement helps your muscles work harder and stronger, allowing you to reach new heights with your workouts.
Packed with vitamins and minerals, and even more so when in supplement form, beets are a great way to get an extra boost before hitting the gym or pavement, think of this as the battery pack for a better workout.
A 3-day cleansing plan is designed to help you naturally rid your body of toxins.
This plan focuses on eating whole and natural foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts, and seeds.Don't forget to hydrate with plenty of water and herbal teas to reduce inflammation, and improve digestion.
A 3-day detox is going to turbocharge your metabolism which is key to weight loss, so if you're ready for a new start, this might be a path to get things rolling.
Replace Bad Snacks with Good Snacks
We all love snacks, but not all snacks love to take part in our weight loss goals. Among them, few are worse for the waistline than potato chips. But they're just so hard to put down.
So instead of living without any earthly pleasures, simply use a healthier alternative in moderation. That's where kale chips come in.
Kale chips are full of good-for-you nutrients and have much less fat than their potato counterparts. Plus, they're also incredibly crunchy and delicious!
If you're running to lose weight, you need to create a calorie deficit, so don't sabotage your efforts with potato chips. Whenever you get that craving, reach for the kale chips instead.
You can make them from home usingSHEFIT's kale chips recipe. It's quick, easy, and tasty.
Running is by far one of the best exercises for increasing your toughness, confidence, and overall mental health. And of course, if you're running to lose weight, you'll get there by building your strength and cardio along the way.
Using our 10 tips will certainly help you stick with it, after all, that's the real hurdle to overcome. If you can make it past the 66-day mark, then you're really onto something.
Just remember to add some variety to keep things interesting - whether that's taking a new route or trying some CrossFit from home - do whatever it takes to keep yourself engaged.
It can be hard to get started (and stay motivated), but armed with the power tips above, some determination, andthe right high-impact sports bra, we think you'll end up impressing yourself in the end.