Mars on Life ~ How I Warm Up to Run

Isn’t it amazing how the running community has grown, people have started running for fitness and well-being all around the world.

To start running all you need is a pair of shoes and a path.  Yet, I’ve heard many a sad story of sore muscles, injuries and complaints of friends unable to run everyday or run further due to their individual running injuries.

I always recommend to beginner runners to train 3 times a week for 20 minutes. Gradually increase the amount of time you’re running and the number of days you run over time.  Do not increase either until you feel comfortable completing your current level of training. If 20 minutes is too much, don’t be afraid to take walking breaks. Perhaps begin by running for 1 minute and walking for 2 minutes, until you complete the 20 minutes. As you get stronger, begin eliminating the walk breaks.

When you’re a beginner, it’s not necessary to worry about how many miles you are running. Focus on the number of minutes instead. Gradually you’ll begin to cover more ground in the same amount of time, and that’s when you’ll want to increase the duration of your workout.

However, heading out for a run too fast and not warming up is a recipe for injury.  Once we get all revved up to run it’s tempting to shoot out the door at top speed and run the risk of pulling a muscle, tweaking a tendon, bone or joint.

The result will end up slowing you down and burning out before you’re done with your workout.  The worst part is that you’re likely to end your run feeling exhausted, discouraged and dreading your next run.

A smart warmup gives your muscles, bones, and joints a chance to loosen up, gradually and gently brings up your heart rate, making it easier to sustain a rhythm while running. You’ll finish feeling exhilarated, energized and excited for your next workout.

My own Pre Run Warm Up includes the following:

Warm up:
  • 5 Min Walk
  • 5 Min Slow Jog
Running Drills: 60 secs Each
  • Knee Hugs – encourages glute activation and good knee lift.
  • Running Skips – Encourages good knee lift and improves stride.
  • Pitter Patters – Encourages light, mid-foot strike and improves stride.
  • Butt Kicks – Activates the hamstrings/glutes for longer running.

Running Strides: 50 metres, once each with an easy jog/walk back in between

  • @ 70,80 & 90% effort

A good warm-up should be at least 5-10 minutes of exercise done at a lower intensity than the workout emphasizing the muscles you will be using.

Post your ideas and warm up routines in the comments below and always have a fun time training!

Mars On Life.