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How do I begin running?

Posted by Kathleen M.

I know that sounds like a dumb question, but I am currently walking and would like to move forward with jogging. I am 57 and have never been athletic. I am working on dropping 40 lbs. With this much extra weight, is it safe to being jogging? Is there a pattern to begin working jogging into my walking schedule? Any advise would be appreicated! Thanks in advance
Answers (1)
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There are two basic principles in running that should be used in any plan.

10% Rule. The number 10 is not a magic number. Some people follow a 5% rule and others use a 12% rule. The idea is to make small increases in distance or speed and then stay at the new level until you feel comfortable with it. Some people can increase their distance every week, while others do it every two or three weeks. The Key is feeling comfortable with the new level before you make another increase.

 Heavy/Light Rule. Those words refer to the stress caused by your running, not to your effort in doing the run. For example, suppose you run a mile, and for you that is a heavy run. The next day should be a light day and could be one of the following: a half-mile run at the same or slower pace as the day before; a walk of the same time or less as the day before; light crosstraining such as swimming or cycling; a day off from exercising. The basis for this rule is the fact that most people need 48 hours between heavy runs so their body can recover. Running is actually destructive to your body -- body cells are damaged. During your rest after the run, your body reacts to the heavy stress by repairing the damage, and in the process your body becomes strongere. Thus rest after a run is critical! The light-stress day after a run is to help your body get the rest it needs.

In your case you've been walking and are now ready for running. Following the 10% rule by adding a small amount of running to your walking. You may want to decrease your walking so the total time is the same. How much running? Only you can answer that. We're all different. Listen to your body, and it will tell you when when you overdo your exercising. Here is a link that gives 16 symptoms of overdoing exercise (the bulleted items).

In most cases, the answer to overdoing ones training is to reduce the intensity of ones training and to get more rest.

NOTICE: The information provided on this site is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your physician or other qualified health provider because of something you have read on Wellsphere. If you have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately.
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