Running is a brilliant way to keep fit and it has been proven to reduce your risk of stroke, diabetes and some types of cancer. But you might be thinking, how long/far should I run to keep fit?
- How far should I run on my first run?
There are lots of things to consider when deciding how far your first run ought to be. For complete fitness beginners or anyone who has been out of practise long-term, it may be shorter than someone in good general health.
Listen to your body. Set off at a pace you’re comfortable with and run until you’re tired, but not exhausted. This could be 5 minutes, 15 minutes or potentially even more. Keep a note of how long you kept going, and for how far – you’ll benefit from having a number to improve on!
- Is distance a good barometer for fitness?
Some think that the distance you run is the sole indication of your fitness level. This is not the case. Bear in mind also that you’re only competing against yourself. After your first few sessions, try adding 5 minutes on to your run. If you’re running outdoors, try adding one or two roads on to your route to help build up stamina.
- How often should you run?
Beginners should aim for little and often with their running training. Don’t push yourself too hard in each session, but try to run 2-4 times per week. When it comes to increasing your distance, aim to add a little bit on roughly every second week. Keep listening to your body during training and don’t ignore ‘little niggles’ that may build to more serious problems. In addition to this timing is important. You want to give your body time between runs to increase bone density and so you don’t run the risk of stress fractures.
Book your free trial at Fit8 and we can go through what our specialists can offer you to help you maintain a good level of fitness through running.