In the midst of all the glorious summer weather, many people are beginning to feel more compelled to spend time outside. It’s easy to let your fitness routine fall to the wayside during the doldrums of winter — a lot of people struggle with this or with Seasonal Affective Disorder — and then, as soon as the first flowers begin to bloom, many folks want to go full-tilt and jumpstart their fitness routines again.

I’m here to be your voice of reason for a minute and to remind you of some very important information, particularly if you’re a runner who’s looking to get back into running after taking some time off, or running less, through the winter. I’m one of those weirdo runners who enjoys running year-round, in all types of weather, and I’ve seen some of what I’ll describe firsthand from my friends and acquaintances.

Consider this a primer for you, a quick guide that’ll help you get back to the nuts and bolts of running as the weather begins to turn more pleasant and your urge to begin racking up miles each week grows.

Get Medical Clearance First:
As adults, we should all get into the habit of seeing our general practitioner every year so our health and well-being can be assessed. If you’ve taken time off from running, or if you haven’t had y

our physical yet this year, I implore you: do not begin your running routine until and unless your medical practitioner has advised you that it’s safe to do so! Don’t merely assume that because you “feel” fine that you actually are fine. It’s better to be safe than sorry, particularly if you have a family history of something deleterious.

Make Sure You Have A Good Pair Of Shoes:
The market for running shoes is enormous, so it’s safe to say that you have a huge variety from which to choose. Your shoes are literally the foundation of your running, so it’s important that you get a pair that fits well for your feet and one that doesn’t have a ton of wear or tear on it. Go to a specialty running sports store, where the employees are runners, so you can ask lots of questions and try on many different models. Don’t be beholden to any particular brand or colIn the midst of all the glorious summer weather, many people are beginning to feel more compelled to spend time outside. It’s easy to let your fitness routine fall to the wayside during the doldrums of winter — a lot of people struggle with this or with Seasonal Affective Disorder — and then, as soon as the first flowers begin to bloom, many folks want to go full-tilt and jumpstart their fitness routines again.

I’m here to be your voice of reason for a minute and to remind you of some very important information, particularly if you’re a runner who’s looking to get back into running after taking some time off, or running less, through the winter. I’m one of those weirdo runners who enjoys running year-round, in all types of weather, and I’ve seen some of what I’ll describe firsthand from my friends and acquaintances.

Consider this a primer for you, a quick guide that’ll help you get back to the nuts and bolts of running as the weather begins to turn more pleasant and your urge to begin racking up miles each week grows.

Get Medical Clearance First:
As adults, we should all get into the habit of seeing our general practitioner every year so our health and well-being can be assessed. If you’ve taken time off from running, or if you haven’t had y

our physical yet this year, I implore you: do not begin your running routine until and unless your medical practitioner has advised you that it’s safe to do so! Don’t merely assume that because you “feel” fine that you actually are fine. It’s better to be safe than sorry, particularly if you have a family history of something deleterious.

Make Sure You Have A Good Pair Of Shoes:
The market for running shoes is enormous, so it’s safe to say that you have a huge variety from which to choose. Your shoes are literally the foundation of your running, so it’s important that you get a pair that fits well for your feet and one that doesn’t have a ton of wear or tear on it. Go to a specialty running sports store, where the employees are runners, so you can ask lots of questions and try on many different models. Don’t be beholden to any particular brand or color; go with what feels the best.

Take Things Gingerly At First.
Many runners commit the mistake of doing too much, too soon, too fast — rather, running too many miles, earlier than they’re ready for them, and at paces that they shouldn’t be running — and ultimately, this results in injuries, sometimes season-ending ones. Don’t be that runner! Instead, take things easy at first. Consider incorporating a run/walk strategy to build up your endurance, and go easy on any workouts initially. Runners are often really overzealous by their very nature, which is great for goal-setting and goal-getting, but be patient with yourself and your burgeoning fitness and speed. It’ll return in time.

Consider Putting A Race On The Calendar For Accountability:
As the weather turns from winter to spring and summer, there is often an explosion of races on the calendar. Marathons or 5ks, half marathons or one-mile races, multi-day mountainous adventure runs or sprints at all-comer’s meets: there’s something out there for everyone. If you think you’ll have problems with motivation to continue your running, you might want to register for a race. Having one on the calendar may be the difference between having wavering motivation and having motivation to get out there and train as you’re supposed to be doing. Resist the urge to sign up for every race you encounter, though, because you don’t want to burn yourself out when you’re first beginning running again.

Keep Things Fun By Running With A Group:
Like a lot of activities in life, running is more fun with others. Check out your local running store, meetup.com, or Strava to find local group runs in your community. Running with others is not only a great way to meet like-minded folks, but it’ll also help make what can be a solitary, monotonous activity into something super social and exciting. There is also a lot of research out there that shows how people benefit from running with people at different paces as them, too, so social running can also be a boon for your speed and endurance, too.

Get Some Gear That You Think You’ll Use:
The running industry is enormous, and runners have so many options these days on what they can spend their hard-earned money on. Some things are absolutely essential, like a good pair of shoes, and at least one running outfit, but everything beyond that is fairly optional. Many runners like to have a GPS watch so they can track their mileage and paces pretty easily, too. Decide what type of gear is important to you, and invest in it accordingly. If you have any questions or want some recommendations, definitely chat with the employees at your local running store; they know the market well and can be a great resource to you.

Connect With Other Runners Online:
Runners love to talk about running, and connecting with other runners online is a great way to ignite your passion for your running without driving your family members crazy, particularly if they don’t also share your love for the sport. There are tons of great Instagram and Twitter accounts out there about running, and once you start following one account, the programs’ algorithms will recommend other similar accounts you can follow. Resist falling into the comparison trap that social media can nurse, however; trust your training and your body, and don’t worry about other runners’ training.

Remember: This Is For Fun!
As you get more heavily invested into your running and your training, you may begin to feel the stress or pressure that comes with self-inflicted goals or expectations. However, as hard as this may be, remember: this is supposed to be fun for you! Unless you have a paycheck or your mortgage on the line, don’t sweat your running very much. Do the very best you can; work hard on your goals; listen to your body, and ultimately, enjoy the journey and experience that running can take you on. It’s an exhilarating ride, believe me.

Hopefully these tips will help you get back to the basic nuts and bolts of running, especially if you’ve taken some time off or are just beginning your running pursuits for the first time. I’ve been running for nearly all of my adult life, and this sport has enriched my life in ways that I could have never imagined and has connected me with people all over the world, fostering meaningful relationships along the way. I can’t wait to hear about how your journey with running transforms your life, so don’t hesitate to connect with me online. Happy trails to you!

Writer’s Bio:

Dan Chabert


An entrepreneur and husband, Dan hails from Copenhagen, Denmark. He loves to join ultramarathon races and travel to popular running destinations together with his wife. During regular days, he manages his websites, RunnerclickThat Sweet GiftThe Fit Bay, Nicershoes and GearWeAre. Dan has also been featured in several popular running blogs across the world.

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