Running Tips from Someone Who Used to Hate Running

Written by Lindsay Quick

Happy Marathon Week CU!

When I tell you that I used to absolutely despise running, I am not joking. I was always an athlete growing up, but to me running was just a waste of time. I would rather be on the court actually practicing my sport than running laps around a track.

Fast forward to adulthood and there are no more practices, no more open gyms and no more games. Sure, I can (and do!) participate in as many rec leagues as I can find, but even that doesn’t fill the void of regular practices.

So, somewhere along the way, I decided I’d try my hand at running. How hard could it be, right? Well, for the most part the concept is simple - you just run. But, there will be days when you just don’t feel like it or something is just off. For those days, I have compiled a list of things that make running just a little tiny bit easier for me.

Let’s Get Some Shoes

(1,000 points to anyone who understands that^ reference)

I cannot stress enough the importance of a good pair of shoes. And by good, I’m not telling you to go out and spend as much money as you possibly can on a pair of shoes. These Yeezy’s are over $500 and they make my feet hurt just to look at them. No, I mean that you need to actually go out and buy running shoes. My absolute favorites are Brooks Adrenaline, but it totally depends on your feet (mine are very flat, in case you needed to know that).

Locally, you can visit businesses like Body n’ Sole or Heel to Toe and they will help size you and get you in a shoe that is perfect for your feet.

Why am I starting with shoes? I am speaking from (a very painful) experience. When I first started running I thought that my regular ol’ tennis shoes would be perfect. Spoiler alert: they were NOT. When I would run with my normal, everyday tennis shoes, I would, without fail, get shin splints. If you aren’t familiar, consider yourself lucky. The short description I found on the internet reads “microtears in muscle and bone tissue”. This is 100% an attempt to fear-monger you into buying yourself a good pair of shoes. I promise your body will thank you.

Find or Make Yourself a Good Playlist

There have been countless studies about how the BPM (beats per minute) of a song can help you when you run. Runners World dives into that in this article. Basically the faster the beat, the quicker you’ll run.

While I’m sure that is probably accurate, I think what’s more important is to run to music that you like. I’m not even going to begin to suggest music here - most of you would probably either throw your phone or just quit reading altogether. Music is very personal and very subjective. You like what you like and I like what I like.

Find something you like and just go with it.

You Don’t Have to Be Usain Bolt

Keep in mind the goal of running isn’t to be the fastest runner in the world. We’ll leave that up to Mr. Bolt. I can assure you that I am by no means a fast runner. Ironically, my last name is Quick, which I am in fact, not. I have relatively short legs which does not lend themselves well to running fast. But that doesn’t stop me. I have come to terms with the fact that running a sub 6 minute mile is probably not in the cards for me and that’s totally okay.

Run at a pace thats god for you and try not to compare yourself to other runners.

Walk Forrest, Walk

Hey, in case no one told you: it’s actually okay to walk. Feeling tired or like you’ve over done it? Walk. There is no rule that says you have to run for 30 minutes straight. Run a lap, walk a lap. You can literally do whatever you want. This isn’t high school P.E. - no one going to get mad at you for walking a little bit.

In fact, there is a legitimate thing called the Run Walk method of running that was developed by an actual marathon runner.

If it’s good enough for a marathon runner, it’s good enough for you. Walk when you need to.

Outside vs. Treadmill

Here’s another insider tip for you: there is a HUGE difference between running outside and running on a treadmill. Some will argue that one is better than the other and vice-versa, but all I know is that I very much have a preference of one over the other. I don’t want to sway your opinion too much, so I’ll keep that to myself, but I encourage you to test both options out and see what you like best.

There are a number of pros and cons to both methods and it’s likely that you’ll have to incorporate both if you plan to start running regularly. For me personally, I know which one I see better results with, so that’s what I stick to when possible.

Give Yourself Credit

My last piece of advice is to give yourself credit. So you only ran a mile? That’s still something. So you had to walk more than you wanted to? That’s okay.

Give yourself credit when you get up and run. You don’t have to break all of your personal records every time you run. When I’m having one of those days where it feels like my feet are stuck in concrete and things just aren’t going my way, I try and remind myself that at least I’m doing something. Anything is better than sitting on your couch for hour four of a Netflix binge.

Be kind to yourself and recognize even the smallest of wins. You got this!

At Campus Ink, we are proud to be the premier printer of all t-shirts, signs, banners and so much more for the Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon. We have a long history of partnership and support of this event which is such a huge part of Champaign-Urbana. We are proud to be a part of it and wish all runners the best of luck!

Happy Marathon Week!

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