Relax

An interesting question I got was my biggest piece of advice for new runners.  I realize there are so many different directions you could go and I’m sure more qualified people have better thoughts.  However, this is my personal advice and honestly I have exactly one big umbrella statement that if I could tell new, old and all runners in general.

Relax.

Don’t worry about the pace on your training runs.  If you begin to worry, you begin to push the pace and second guess yourself.  Could I go run 70 mile weeks and force myself to run at a 7 minute pace?

Well, it would have to happen on the treadmill and I would get injured within two weeks.  I can almost guarantee you that.

When you begin to add more milage and time into running whether you are a new runner or a seasonal adding more mileage on 50,60…100 mile plan.  Adding more mileage takes time to adjust too and your pace on training runs will be slower.  Don’t worry about that.  Your body is beginning to adapt.  You will feel stronger eventually.

Yes, your short term goal of being faster (read 2 weeks) will not be achieved but when your body adjusts…you’ll feel a lot better.  I personally recommend keeping most of your runs untimed (it seems like the world is a slave to GPS watches these days).  It took me roughly 3 months of absolutely no timing of races to realize that it didn’t matter if my pace was 5 seconds faster, slower, exactly the same…who cares.  You aren’t racing anyone in your training runs…well infact you are racing yourself of how long you can stay injury free.  But I’m confusing myself now.

So with that my biggest advice for any runner is to relax and don’t worry about paces.  It’s physically impossible to get faster on every single run.  Go sans GPS on multiple runs.  It might liberate you.

Question for you: Biggest advice for new, old, any runner?