How to start Jogging

How to start Jogging

Jogging is known as a form of running at a steadier and gentle pace, normally running with a pace of less than 6 mph is regarded as jogging. It is one of the most popular workouts around the world because of its simplicity and effectiveness. A person of any age and shape can start this exercise without any complexity.  

Well, we assume that you have decided to lead a healthy lifestyle and as a first step you want to start jogging. In the beginning, you might get a bit to confuse but we are here to help you, we are going to provide a complete guideline that will make you confident enough to be a regular jogger.

So, let’s get started

1. Get Medical Clearance:

Before getting into any physical activity, it is important to get clearance from your doctor to avoid injuries. Visit your doctor and share your jogging plan with him. He might prescribe you to go through several scans to examine your current physical conditions and trust me it is important for your own interest; it might be dangerous to run with medical issues.  After the doctor’s approval, you are all set to go. 

2. Get Dressed Up: 

It’s not that you need to get a sophisticated or fancy outfit but there are some gears that will make your jogging smooth and comfortable. Keep in mind that before choosing any jogging gears, you need to give utmost priority to your comfort because if you are not comfortable while running, you won’t be motivated enough to continue jogging.

  • Running Shoe:

A good pair of running shoes is the most important gear you will need. There are a lot of options when it comes to picking one and at times you might get puzzled. So the best way to get the right pair of shoe is to visit specialized running stores, these stores provide expert opinion according to your budget and requirement. You should try on different shoes to pick the most comfortable one and some stores provide the facility to run with them on a treadmill.  

  • Socks:

Socks are also important because it protects your feet from getting blisters. Nowadays there are specialized socks that keep your feet dry and blister free while jogging. You can find a perfect pair of running socks in any running store or sports shoe store. 

  • Cloths:

The key is to choose light and easy clothes for jogging. It is important to dress according to the weather. If the weather is warm, it is recommended to wear light colored and loose fitting clothes which will help you to breathe and cool down easily such as shorts or leggings and t-shirts. It is a good idea to stick to synthetic materials as they wick away moisture. Avoid wearing deep colored cloths as they absorb sunlight & heat.

When it is cold out there, wear long sleeves along with pants or trousers. Remember that your body will heat up as you jog so choose your clothes accordingly.

  • Jogging pouch:

You might need to carry some of your pieces of stuff while jogging such as your phone, wallet, water bottle, etc. and it is not comfortable to jog with these pieces of stuff in your pocket. So a running belt or a pouch can be a good solution, it is usually comfortable to run with and it is not much expensive. You can get one from your nearest running store.

3. Choose A Suitable Spot For Running:  

As a beginner, you are advised to jog on flat surfaces such as running tracks, regular roads, sideways, etc. Jogging on uneven surfaces may lead amateurs to fatal injuries. It may excite you when you see professional runners running on uneven surfaces but keep in mind that they are trained professional and you have just started so don’t try to match with them. If you jog on a regular basis, over time you will improve your stamina and skills required to run on those surfaces.

4. Decide When To Run:  

Most of the people prefer jogging in the early morning because the temperature remains cooler and the air seems to be fresh as roads are free from traffic. We advise not to go for jogging between 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. as this is the warmest portion of the day. If you can’t manage jogging time in the morning, you can choose to jog at night but make sure to wear colorful outfits so that vehicles can sight you in the dark and don’t forget to leave your headphones at home.

5. Mix It Up: 

Jogging on the same route every day might make you bore and demotivated. So try out different routes, make it a bit interesting, this diversification will certainly boost your spirit and keep you motivated to go for a jog every day. Plan your jogging routes, you can use your phone for reminders. Mixing up the routes will also boost your mood.

6. Start Small: 

Don’t get too ambitious when you are just starting out, it will take a while to get used to jogging habits. Don’t rush, your body needs time to adapt with these sudden movements. You don’t need to go for jogging every day, it is fine to go out 3 to 4 days a week, in this way your body muscle will have enough time to recover.

You can start with 2 to 3 kilometers jog, the rule of thumb is to increase your speed by 10% every week. Starting out small will help prevent running injuries.

7. Reset Your Diet:

While you have started jogging, you need to change your diet accordingly. Proper nutrition is the fuel that will pump you up while hitting the track.

If you are going for a small jog then you might not require anything to eat, your stored glycogen would be enough for such a small jog but if you are going for a long jog (more than 60 minutes), It is very important to eat something before going for jog. You should eat something that provides instant energy and easy to digest, you can have bananas, oats, energy bars, and toast with peanut butter. You must avoid all sort of oily, fried and sugary foods, otherwise, you won’t be able to reap the desired benefit from jogging.

8. Track Your Improvements:

It is important to track your daily jogging improvements, it will boost your motivation and you can also make some changes reviewing your regular activity.

There are a lot of apps available to track your jogging when it comes to jogging, they can track your heartbeat, pace, distance, calories burnt, running routes, and many more. One of the widely used apps is Run keeper, Adidas Running App, Strava, Endomondo, and more.

If you have a higher budget, you can go for fitness watches, these watches can provide more accurate information.

9. Sun protection:

When you are going to jog in the sun, make sure to protect your skin from sunlight, you are advised to use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. Apply it to your skin 20 minutes ago and when it is dried, you are all set to go out to jog. You can also use hat and sunglasses in addition to sunscreen.

10. Don't Forget to Warm-up:

Warm-up ensures that muscles get ample oxygen before going for a jog, it also raises the temperature of the muscles and makes them more flexible. This flexibility of muscle prevents injuries and when you are warmed up you can run with more ease.

There are a lot of warm-up exercises that are helpful for jogger such as walking briskly, walking lunges, jumping jacks, or opposite toe touches and many more. Don’t rush your warming, give your body time to heat up.

11. Use jog-walk-jog Rule:

When starting out as a beginner, it will be difficult for you to keep a certain pace. Most of the time you will get tired too soon, get short of breath and eventually stop jogging. So in this case, to gain endurance you can follow the jog-walk-jog rule, where you will run for a short segment, and when you get tired you will take a short walking break, repeat this pattern. This rule enables you to continue the activity without being stopped, this way you will gradually improve stamina.

12. Practice proper Jogging form:  

Practicing proper running form can have a significant impact on your performance and it can prevent injuries. The basic is to keep your head straight, bend your arms at a 90° angle and don’t forget to relax your muscles, don’t lift your knee too high and strike the ground gently with the middle of your foot. You can go to YouTube for practical guidance, there you will find much expert advice regarding your proper running form.

13. Get a Company: 

You can find someone who is willing to go to jogging with you every day, you can ask your friends, relatives, neighbors, and co-workers if they want to join you for jogging every day. You can join a local jogging community, there you will get in touch with many expert runners who can help you to learn basic jogging form and other techniques. Most importantly, a company while jogging will help you to stay motivated and you will feel the challenge to beat your own records.

14. Breathing is Key: 

Don’t forget to breathe regularly as you jog. Try to take deep breaths as deep breathing ensures maximum oxygen intake. There are many expert opinions on breathing techniques but as a beginner, you should not get into those complications, just breathe slowly and regularly.

15. Participate in Running Events:  

You might get bored or demotivated at times, so it is a good idea to participate in running events. You don’t have to be a professional runner to participate in these events, there are many running events designed for armature runners such as 5k or 7.5k. Go and register for an event, you will find many people like you and you won’t feel left alone at all. If you could finish your race, this achievement will boost your spirit to a new level.

16. Boost Your Endurance: 

My old man used to say that if you don’t want to improve, there is no point in doing something. Don’t just be satisfied with a regular 20 minutes’ jog, challenge, and push yourself. Try to increase your distance by 10% every week.  This way you will gradually increase your stamina.

17. Don’t give up:

As a beginner, you will find it difficult when you will start your jogging, but keep in mind that the key is to hang on. Primarily will be exhausted after a few minutes of running, running out of breaths and you will feel you cannot do this but trust me you need to just hang in there, return to jog the next day, over time your muscle will loosen up and you will find jogging lot easier. You just need to keep up jogging unless your body gets used to it.

18. Cool Down: 

Cooling down is equally important as warming up. Cooling down after your jog allows a gradual recovery for the body. It also reduces the generation of lactic acid which prevents cramp and similar injuries. You can do easy walk, foam rolling and some stretches such as Hip flexor stretch, Thigh stretch, Hamstring stretch, Calf stretch, Lower backstretch and many more to cool down after jogging.

Conclusion:  

Jogging is one of the easiest and straightforward exercises, you don’t need any equipment to do it. It improves cardiovascular health, strengthens muscles, and helps to maintain a healthy weight. In the beginning, it may be much difficult to get used to jogging, but once your body muscles get used to running you will start to enjoy jogging. When you complete a personal milestone in your jogging, it gives a sense of satisfaction, this satisfaction gives you a strong motivation to overcome any problem in life and it also lifts your mood which is very important for mental health. So, don’t give up, hang in there unless jogging becomes a part of your lifestyle, trust me you will be glad later on. 

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