Couch to 10k Run – A lazy girls guide

In the new year everyone and his dog feels compelled to start a health and fitness drive. Of course I was no exception and I had no way of getting out of it…no pressure then. I had signed up to a 10K run (or rather I had been signed up!). Getting started, getting out again then staying committed was the hardest part. Hurrah, I cracked it, if you are hoping to get started here’s a few of my tips.

1) Get an awesome playlist
Sounds silly but plug in and get all your favorite tunes beating as you run. It will motivate you and take your mind off your sore legs, breathing, cramp ect. I find it helps you relax and switch off from a day at work or things whizzing round your mind. It’s now an excellent excuse for me to have a nice treat now and again on I tunes – because hey you have earned it!

2) Treat yourself to some cute gear
Well it seems like (in Scotland anyway) that fitness gear is the look, really whether you are exercising or not. Its true to say at the moment the stores are bursting with fitness gear, from florescent training shoes to Yoga mats. You don’t need to splurge on all the latest Under Armour gear, Primark are currently doing a great range of fitness gear to get you kitted out cheaply, Tiger Tiger are doing a cute selection of colourful bits, sports bras ect and even M&S have a funky range. Getting kitted out with new gear gives you a boost, encouragement, inspiration and you will look the part and hopefully eventually feel great.

3) Get the App
Wow, who knew I would not only grow to love running I’d also get addicted to an App! Nike running + is just awesome. Used on an iPhone it tracks your run, your pace, tells you how far you have gone, in nice little half mile chunks, at the end it gives you a nice pep talk on how fabulous you have done or how – ‘yes it was hard to get out there today, but hey, you did it’. Paces, miles, kilometres all sounds pretty scary if you are not used to it but the important thing is you can see how much of an improvement you are making, and that’s the thing about running, you will always get better the more you train. Oh and it gives you a nice wee map the end of where you have run, so you can give yourself a pat the back.

4) Sign up!
In all fairness I’d probably wouldn’t be writing this post if it wasn’t for me being signed up to the Edinburgh Marathon festival 10k. When you have signed up all the excuses in your head disappear, if you are like me suddenly it will be getting closer and you have no choice but to get out and try to crack it. It’s amazing what you will do given no choice. The feeling of running with lots of other runners is amazing and you even get a goodie bag at the end complete with sweeties, shampoo and a T Shirt

5) Enlist a buddy
Especially when starting out it’s great to go out with a friend. You can gossip about the latest chat, share notes on new running gear, vent about work, laugh together when you get lapped by the obviously pro athlete, feel safe and feel impressed together when you crack that distance that’s just a little bit further than before. Also when your mind would be focusing on how sore your legs are or how breathless you are starting to feel you distracted by having a good old gossip

6) Get a routine
Set a plan that fits around work, life, eating ect ect. Make it a goal to get out after work one night and stick to it. (This is one I am still yet to master during the horrid Scottish winter….I’ll keep you posted)

Just getting started is the hardest thing. My first run with Mr sunshine resulted in me running half a mile, feeling sick, getting cramp and us having to walk home on a post work January night in the freezing cold (being scantily clad ready to build up a sweat didn’t help) it was a total disaster! But luckily I can look back on this and laugh, as I’ve mastered a 10k and am training for The Great Scottish run (a half marathon) . Everyone has to start somewhere, and no matter how fast or far you go you always improve. In the words of Baz Luhrmann, Sunscreen,  the only race is with yourself.