6 Lessons From a Year of Running

One year ago this week I started running.

Initially it was just a challenge. After spending most of life swimming or playing underwater rugby I wanted to try something different and learn how to go on long runs.

Here are 6 lessons I learned along the way:

  1. Start small. It's OK to wanting to run a marathon or even an ultra, but when you're taking your first steps it is best to keep it simple. For months I just ran 2 miles per day even I felt I could go farther.
  2. Running form is important. It turns out there is a proper way of striking the ground, moving your arms and raising your feet off the floor. Start learning the movements early. No shoe, however comfy and cushioned, will protect your joints from injury.
  3. Take rest seriously. Get to know your body first before skipping rest days. Your body needs to recover.
  4. Expect bad days. You won't be at the top of your game every day. Still you must go out and learn to run feeling sleepy, stressed, anxious. Most issues go away after a few miles.
  5. Plan your runs. Treat running like important work. Put it in your calendar and don't skip your sessions.
  6. Long runs are the best. There's a freedom and meditative state that your mind only enters after many miles. Learn to enjoy it.

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