Lockdown fitness: Running tips for beginners

If you’ve found yourself back in lockdown, or you aren’t keen to return to the gym with the coronavirus still circling, and are over at-home workouts - maybe it’s time to give running a go.

Obviously running isn’t for everyone. But, given Melburnians are currently only allowed to spend up to one hour outdoors and can only venture 5km from their homes, it could be a great option to take up a new hobby and look after your health and fitness at the same time.

Young woman running along concrete wall in the city
Maybe now is the time to start a new hobby. Photo: Getty

To help kickstart your running journey we decided to get some tips for beginners from Australian 3000m Steeplechase athlete Georgia Winkcup.

Georgia tells Yahoo Lifestyle motivation and routine are key, but she also says it’s important to mix things up.

georgia winkcup
Georgia is an Aussie 3000m Steeplechase athlete. Photos: Instagram/georgiawinkcup

Here are her top tips for running beginners:

Find your motivation

Getting started with running is all about taking the first step and making sure that you enjoy it. Find something that motivates you to run - whether it be an epic playlist, a beautiful running route or a running pal to get you through the workout.

You could also connect to the fitness communities by downloading a running apps like MapMyRun so that you can track your progress and draw inspiration from others.


Progress gradually

One of the most important tips that I could give to anyone who wants to get into running is to do it gradually and to build up your distance, pace, and intensity over time.

This will allow you to avoid any niggles and injuries but will also allow you to fall in love with running and the way it makes you feel instead of smashing yourself too early in the process.

The first way to gradually progress is to make sure to give yourself ample recovery time between runs and to only increase your weekly millage by no more than 10% at a time. Another way to progress into running is to set goals for yourself - this might be to run a certain time, distance or to maintain pace.

Remember that every runner is different and that your goals are just that, goals for you, set by you.

Build a routine

Building a weekly running routine isn’t just about scheduling days, locations and distances for each run but also focusing on setting aside time to stretch, warm up, and cool down.

Building a weekly routine which incorporates these elements will help you to continue to get out there and run whilst avoiding the risk of any unwanted injury or setback.

Warming up and dynamic stretching before each run also allows your body to get ready for the run so that you can go further and push harder each time.

Determined young Latin man stretching calf while leaning on wall
Stretching can help reduce the risk of injury. Photo: Getty

Change it up

As a runner it’s important to add a bit of variety into your running routine to keep it exciting and avoid boredom.

You may want to add variety by changing up running locations [as far as lockdown allows], the pace, or type of session you complete. Some ways you could do this is to incorporate interval sessions, explore new places and change up the scenery, or mix it up with trail, road and park runs to make sure that you don’t overload with all-concrete running.

Female runner running at summer park trail . Healthy fitness woman jogging outdoors.
Maybe take a different route every other day. Photo: Getty

Get the right shoes

A tip to any runner of any level is to invest in the right pair of running shoes and running gear to feel comfortable and, more importantly, to minimise risk of injury.

I recommend selecting a pair of shoes which provide traction, flexibility, and cushioning for your feet.

I run in the Under Armour HOVR Phantom 2 shoes, which are the perfect balance of cushioning and responsiveness so I can get the support without sacrificing speed. All I feel is bouncy comfort when I hit the pavement.

Running woman in the forest. Close-up of sneakers. Healthy lifestyle concept.
Finding the right shoe is so important. Photo: Getty

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