Training Tips For Beginners – Tip #1

We will be doing a series for beginners that should help you start a training routine to get you ready for your first race.  If you are a seasoned mud running obstacle racer, maybe you can add a comment that could offer some more tips to other readers.  Either way, we hope you enjoy this series and find it useful.

Quick Disclaimer: Always consult your physician before beginning any exercise program. Consult with your healthcare professional to design an appropriate exercise prescription. If you experience any pain or difficulty with any exercise, stop and consult your healthcare provider.

Any time you start something new it’s easy to want to jump in and give it your all.  That may not be the best idea if you are just starting to exercise or beginning to run for the first time.  If you start off too fast your body may rebel, and leave you a sore stiff mess.  It may just turn you off from exercising ever again.  Okay, maybe not forever.  But there are some things we can suggest that can help you ease into a routine that will be enjoyable and great for you at the same time.



You should make your way slowly into a running routine.  Going slow and steady will get you to running three miles (or 5K) on a regular basis in just two-three months.  Beginners should start with combining walking and running. Begin by alternating four minutes of waking with two minutes of running for a total of 20-30 minutes.

Make sure to spread the days out  throughout the week to give yourself a chance to rest and recover. You should have a rest day in between your running days.

Continue this way for at least two weeks, and then add a minute to the run and subtract a minute from the walk. After a couple of weeks at this level, step it up to four minutes running, two minutes walking. Keep going until you are running continuously for 30 minutes or settle into any walk/ run combo that suits you.



A week before the race, cut distances by about two thirds and limit running the last two days.  You don’t want to stress your body right before the race.  As the weeks go by you may be tempted to really try to crank up your speed, but overdoing it increases your risk of injury.  You will be really disappointed if you have to bow out of a race because you overdid it training or worst case, got an injury that will prevent you from competing.

Don’t worry about how fast you’re going. That will come later.  In the beginning focus on your form and building your stamina and the speed will come later.

Before hitting the pavement (or dirt), make sure to start each session with a five-minute warm up.  This can include light stretches, a brisk walk or slow jog.  This will improve your flexibility and reduce chances of injury.  A cool down is important too.  Take your time to stretch out all your muscles after exercise.  This is a chance for you to slow down your heart rate and keep those muscles from cramping up on you.



I’ve read that runners who have just completing an event or race had an increased sense of accomplishment. Newbies seasoned racers alike agreed that they felt more confident and more powerful in all areas of their lives after completing the race. They felt stronger mentally and physically.  Once you finish your first race, it will open the floodgates.

So get out there and get moving!


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