Now, I’m not a total stranger to running. I exercise pretty frequently, and sometimes that’ll include a run. But I will categorically deny being ‘a runner’, because on the whole I believe myself to be rubbish at it. Useless. Absolutely knackered after 5 minutes, hating every second, certainly not capable of running any kind of distance.
Well, I hate not being good at things. So naturally, I signed up to run 50 miles for charity during May, and also to do a 10km race at the end of the month. Hahahahaha.
Thus began a bit of a training routine, in the hopes of avoiding absolute failure in the ridiculous endeavours I’d committed to. And it wasn’t long before I started to feel it – the running bug. I was… enjoying it? Wanting to run more? For longer?! WHO AM I?
So with that for context, here are my running tips for people are think they are rubbish runners, from a self-confessed rubbish runner.
- Start off slow
For me, this was the most important thing to take on board when it came to improving my runs. For a really long time, I’d set off absolutely bombing it up the street, because anything less than flat-out would make me look like an absolute amateur, right? Nuh-uh. Know what makes you look like an amateur? Having to stop 30 seconds in ‘cos you just depleted your energy levels trying to set off like a badass. Slow and steady wins the race, my friends – clichés exist for a reason… the reason being they’re infuriatingly true.
- Good shoes
I can’t stress enough just how necessary the right running shoes are. They provide the proper support to both help your technique and reduce the risk of injury. It’s also important to replace them semi-regularly – I’ve just had some newbies after 2 years (see featured photo) and I saw my performance improve immediately, plus no more dreaded blisters! I’d recommend Nike & New Balance but that’s just personal preference, so shop around and see what works for you.
- A killer playlist
Not everyone likes to run with headphones in (and if you’re running near roads you should make sure you’re not distracted from your surroundings, for safety purposes) but it’s a must for me. A good playlist can be super motivational, and can really help when you’re starting to struggle.My saviour songs: Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself – Jess Glynne, No Love – Eminem & Lil Wayne, Blow Me (One Last Kiss) – Pink
- A fantasy life
Lol ok, hear me out. Sometimes the only thing that gets me through a run that feels never-ending is taking a little trip to fantasy land. Don’t give me that look, you know you have one too – an alter ego, that is, existing purely in your head. It’s the version of you that nails the presentation at work and is instantly given a promotion and a pay rise. The you that sees your ex on a night out and suitably curves him instead of wailing ‘omg do you think he noticed my new dress’ at your mates. The you that’s drinking cocktails on a beach and not dealing with this bullshit right now.I will forever champion the fantasy life, because even if it doesn’t give you a little bit of drive, it at least distracts you for long enough that you accidentally run a couple of miles and don’t even realise it. HURRAH!
- A good cause
Finally, if anything is going to spur you on, it’s the reminder that you’re doing it for a purpose. Whether that’s a personal goal, such as boosting your fitness levels or losing weight, or something you’re doing for charity, the knowledge that each step is taking you closer to that goal is all the motivation you’re gonna need.I’m taking part in OutRun May, where I’m running 50 miles over the course of the month in order to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support and all the amazing work they do for people affected by cancer. It’s a cause that’s really close to my heart, and every donation makes a ton of difference, so if you want to find out more check out my JustGiving page here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/robyn-davies-outrun