GETTING FIT AND SLIM BY RUNNING
Some Running Tips For Those In A Great Hurry!
So you are in a great hurry to start running! You think you have found the best way to lose that belly fat and you want to get on with it. However, you cannot ever be in too much of a hurry to do anything that you would â€œwilly
nillyâ€ put your health at great risk! Very little else (if indeed anything!) matters if you do not have health. Before all else therefore, you have to attend to this first â€œhurdleâ€ in your running progress, as failing to do so, could in all probability, jeopardize and seriously imperil, not only your physical wellbeing, but your life as well! Running, although coming easily and naturally to humans, will take a heavy toll on your body.
Therefore you must know in the beginning, whether or not your body is presently able to â€œaccommodateâ€ the physical â€œstressâ€ which you are going to impose on it when you start to run. So whoa there! â€“ slow down and let us get to your doctor fist â€“ and obviously fast, since you are in a hurry. You must get that medical â€œclearanceâ€ first, especially if you are older and/or out of shape! You donâ€™t want to be an immediate casualty â€“ someone who also ran. You do not want what is displayed in the accompanying image to be your early and unfortunate fate!
Assuming you have been given the â€œall clearâ€ signal by your doctor, you can now move with some degree of â€œconfidenceâ€ (not cockiness â€“ or you will soon be deflated!), to the next steps. However, I must warn you that despite getting over (even with flying colors!) the medical hurdle, there are four things that should first be done before you can take your first â€œrunningâ€ steps, no matter how much of a hurry you are in.
Firstly, you must look to the very critical matter of your running shoes and apparel. Get yourself a suitable (this word â€œsuitableâ€ contains many elements, which will not be elaborated on here, but on which, for your safety and
running longevity, you should inform yourself!) pair of running shoes. You must note that this will greatly depend on your running surface and the kind of running you are going to do (cross country? marathon?, etc.),as well as your individual physical characteristics. You can buy these shoes at special sports stores where you can get professional advice on this.
Get the proper apparel for running. Many seasoned runners wear â€œshortsâ€ under regular running shorts to avoid chafing. Do not use cotton socks but buy those made of material intended for running. You can look smart in your outfit but it should not be of the slim-fit body hugging type. Feeling and lookingâ€stylishâ€ will give you a lift!
Secondly, develop a training schedule. This is critical, as this is not to be just any training schedule, but one that is specific to you â€“ one formulated around you and developed specially for you. If you are not familiar with any of this, I suggest that you seek advice from a professional fitness trainer or from a fitness trainer school which might help you with this. A training schedule forms a very important part of your development as a runner, as in the final analysis it imposes a level of discipline and consistency around your exercise activities.
Thirdly, you must set yourself some very realistic targets for your running. You will at least, among other things, want to know (and can therefore monitor your progress) how well you are doing in your running. Improvements that you will be able to detect and follow in yourself, will give you some satisfaction and encouragement to â€œstay the courseâ€. These goals will usually be of a short and long term nature and must be physically achievable. However, in the early stages, pay more attention to the short terms ones, as these are more discernible or measurable from week to week and month to month. A â€œshort termâ€ goal might be for example to enter a 5 km race in 3 months time. You will not be trying to win the event nor do record times, but just to finish!
Fourthly, note that when you run, you will be using up a lot of energy, burning up calories. This energy source in your body has to be replenished. All these running “activities” in your training routine to be effective, have to be supported by proper dieting as your body needs to recover and replenish its energy loss, which it does by food intake. The kinds of food you eat therefore, are important and hence, the overall dieting process has to be controlled.
Your diet therefore has to be specially monitored and for this, dieting information is provided elsewhere on this site, or you can get advice from several dieting sources available on line which almost unanimously, advertise themselves to be the best way of losing belly fatâ€. These â€œdietingâ€ sources stress high intakes of carbohydrates (â€œcarbsâ€), some protein (which latter helps to build new cells and muscles), and some â€œfatâ€, the ratio being 70:15:15 of carbs, protein and fat respectively, which as a combination, is said to be the best food to lose belly fat!
With these matters duly attended to and in place in place for starters, you can set about your â€œhurriedâ€ running undertakings, for which the following general tips, coming as â€œbest practicesâ€, are provided. These are concerned mostly with how you do things and less with what you do, although the â€œwhatâ€ has, in some cases, to be strongly emphasized. How you do things (and there are best practice methods for these!), dictate, determine and are intended to ameliorate or avoid all entirely, common running injuries, for which, as a beginner, you are more prone to come by.
Being in a hurry means that you do want it all, but it must be encapsulated, it must be â€œcannedâ€. Being in a hurry does not mean you want less, but rather that it must be as brief as possible, but leaving nothing outâ€“ especially anything essential! In the case of running however, even a â€œbriefâ€ description, if it is to capture the essentials, can prove to be relatively â€œlongâ€ and therefore some â€œcompromisesâ€ have to be made. I will therefore try to be as inclusive as possible of the essentials of running for a beginner, but this will have to be at the expense of â€œcompletenessâ€ in many cases. So here goes! You have asked the question: “Does running burn belly fat?” and you are about and anxious to find out. So let’s get on with your exercise to lose weight and your flat belly diet menu. You will do the following:
Be cautious at first. If you are out of shape, start slowly. If you find yourself breathing too hard, your chest heaving and aching, slow down a bit until your â€œdistressâ€ subsides and you feel comfortable again. Start with about 35- 40 minutes of walking about four or five times weekly. If you overdo it, you will get very sore. If this happens and is proving too much of a discomfort, ease up then. Let your body do the monitoring.
Mix up running with walking. When you are able to manage walking comfortably, do some slow jogging extra. Beginners as well as experienced runners alike, often alternate 5 minutes of running, with 5 minutes of walking. This allows a recovery time and you will be able to run for a longer period and be more comfortable. Mixing up running with walking, loses little and gains much.
Keep your first runs short and slow. You can now begin to introduce a little â€œrunningâ€ into your routine, but this must be done slowly and in a measured, controlled manner. By doing this, you will significantly decrease the chances of injury. You will at first be very sore and you need to â€œrunâ€ through this. If you undertake long runs, the pain you develop will be persistent for a long time and might serve to discourage you.
Increase your running time. If you wish to shed a lot of pounds (burn up fat!) and to become slim and fit, increase your time. Take a measured approach, however, and do this moderately. You will find that increasing your routine time by about ten percent (10%) each week, you will reach a state where you are no more tired at this time than when you were previously running half the time – evidence of your increasing fitness! Do as most runners do and cut your training schedule by at least 50 percent to 75 percent every 4th, 5th or 6th week. This provides sufficient recovery time.
Be moderate. Mix up your â€œhardâ€ running with plenty of slow running and take time off to allow for recuperation as running can be very stressful on your body.
Do some speed runs. Mix your normal runs with â€œspeedâ€ or â€œhigh intensityâ€ sessions as well as with other types of training routines, for example, using weights. This allows you to â€œworkâ€ different muscles, areas and systems of your body and will contribute to all around physical development.
Do preliminary warm-ups. Groom your muscles for your planned run by jogging easily and slowly for about 10 minutes before starting on the â€œhardâ€™ run. In cold climates, or if you feel â€œstiffâ€, walk first (about 10 minutes) before starting to jog.
Try to run on soft surfaces. This will minimize shock to your joints as when you run, your feet hit the ground with a tremendous amount of force. Grass or dirt is best and cement and concrete should be avoided. Avoid surfaces also where there is a continuous slant as this is burdensome on your legs and will lead to a common runners injury known as Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITBS), which is due to inflammation of the iliotibial band, a thick band of fibrous tissue that runs down the outside of your leg.
Pick a convenient route. In the early stages, you should try to make this as close to home as possible as this will give you some confidence â€“ you can always get home!
Vary your training routes. If you keep doing the same route day after day, it will become boring and you will lose focus and motivation. Therefore, mix things up a bit with different â€œaudiencesâ€, sights, sounds, environment. Try running the opposite way sometimes, or choose a different pathway. Do some hill running if possible. All this will prevent your body from easily becoming â€œacclimatizedâ€, as the common saying goes.
Share the running track with others. Remember that you are out there with many other people seeking exercise of some sort, e.g., bikers, walkers and other runners. Do not be totally â€œoblivious of them all, although your efforts should, for the most part, be concentrated on yourself.
Hydrate frequently. When you run, especially in hot conditions, your body loses a large amount of
fluids. These need to be replaced or you will find yourself exhibiting the symptoms of dehydration, namely, thirst, headaches, dizziness, and even vomiting. Drink before you run (about 16 fluid ounces, 1-2 hours before), and on the road, about 10 fluid ounces.
Eat something. Eat up to an hour or so before a run, but do not â€œstuffâ€ yourself and do not eat â€œspicyâ€ foods. Try a sports drink, a glass of chocolate milk and a doughnut.
If you are out on â€œlong runsâ€, eat something every hour or so, such as energy bars, etc. To help recovery times, try to eat something like a banana (a high glycaemic index GI food) after your run and, for your main meal, which you should have within an hour or so after your run, eat low GI carbohydrates (slow energy release) such as brown rice or sweet potatoes.
Run with company. If possible, join a running club, run with a group, or at least a friend who is as
serious as you are about running, as you do not want to be distracted at this time! Here, you each play a mutually supportive role. Additionally, having someone around, provides motivation for you and strengthens your purpose. When you have someone to whom you â€œfeel obligatedâ€ to perform, it is much harder to skip a scheduled running routine.
Cool down when you’re through. Finish a â€œhardâ€ run with at least 10 minutes jogging. After a â€hardâ€
run and after you have â€œcaught your breathâ€™, stretch the different muscles in your legs. This will decrease the chances of them â€œstiffening upâ€, thus limiting your motion and thereby interfering with your future (next day) run. This will also help to prevent injury.
Do not ignore pain. If you feel sudden, sharp pains which persist, stop running immediately. Treat aches and pains with ice as soon thereafter as possible. However, do not extend icing periods beyond 20 minutes. If you get â€œstitchesâ€ or side cramps, do some abdominal breathing.
Look somewhat to your running form. In order to minimize running injuries, try to run with as â€œlightâ€ a step as possible, as smoothly, flowing and with as much â€œrhythmâ€ as you can be comfortable with. At your
first venture at running, watch your step carefully, making sure that, instead of landing on the balls of your feet (which is very easily the temptation to do!), your heel strikes the ground first. Move your arms (pump them is the term!) strongly and quickly forward and your knees and body will follow suit. The bigger the movement of your arms, the bigger the movement forward of your knees.
Run for yourself. Remember that you are not out there for anybody but yourself! Therefore, pay no attention to how anyone else is doing. Run within yourself and at your own speed. Do not compare yourself with others or try to emulate their goals. Your goals are for you, their goals are for themselves!
Record your training. Keep a diary of both your runs and your training activities. This will provide solid evidence of your improvement â€“ or slippage! You will need the mileage to help determine if you are doing too much to your legs as well as help you decide when to get a new pair of running shoes which should be about every 300-400 miles. Running in worn shoes can prove to be â€œfatalâ€ in terms of injuries.
Do not be too hard on yourself. There will be days when you are â€œjust not up to itâ€. There will be
times when you cannot complete your regular training routines. There will be those occasions when todayâ€™s run is worse than yesterdayâ€™s, todayâ€™s pace not as bouncy, sure nor light as yesterdayâ€™s, you have not achieved the target you set for yourself â€“ did not drop that half pound of weight! These are very normal â€œsetbacksâ€ and you just have to press forward, maybe, for example, adjusting your goals a bit and remembering that even an â€œunsatisfactoryâ€ run is better than none at all. Do not think you â€œcanâ€™tâ€ or â€œneverâ€ will do it! You will have rough days and reach frequent â€œplateausâ€ in your running journey â€“ but continue the journey with the knowledge also that these times will pass and better â€“not bitter â€“ will come!
If you wish a more comprehensive view, this link will take you to the Best Practice Tips
Follow these best practices in running and if you are in it for weight loss, you will soon find that running is one of the best ways to lose belly fat and become fit and slim. You will have become much more conscious about foods that cause you to lose that belly fat and how much exercise to lose weight you must perform. You will get into shape, achieve great fitness and health and enjoy a much longer healthy life of quality!