5 tips for beginner runners during times of social distancing

People out jogging in a city park while socially distancing.

With gyms across the country temporarily closed and the last gasps of winter finally giving way to spring, many people may be looking to move their home workout outside.

One of the most accessible and rewarding outdoor fitness activities is running. You really only need a great, supportive pair of shoes.

Running has many benefits—from physical health and emotional well-being to helping your immune system keep viruses at bay. Start your running journey on the right foot with these great tips.

Find your tribe—virtual or otherwise

With social distancing rules in place, it is recommended that you either run by yourself or with those in your household.

This can hamper the motivation that normally comes from running in a like-minded group. But, like we are learning in other areas of life right now, there are ways to connect virtually with other runners so everyone can stay safe.

Enlist a couple of friends or family members that want to start this journey with you and join one of the many running apps together, create a private group on social media or simply start a group text.

Receiving an inspiring picture or selfie from a friend’s run or being able to share your own accomplishment with people who will appreciate it can mean the difference between sitting on the couch and getting yourself out there.

A woman checks her running app while out for a jog.

Tackle a virtual 5k

When people take up running, many sign up for a 5k or 10k or even a marathon to kick their motivation in gear. Plunking down the registration money gives you a goal to work toward while you train, and you get a medal at the finish line!

While many races are cancelled this year, several are offering virtual options.

You run the race on your own and they mail you the race swag. Signing up with your virtual tribe will add to your motivation. You could even sign up for multiple virtual races and see how your times improve over the months.

A person runs with their dog on a rural road.

Keep your distance

When out running, use appropriate sidewalk etiquette to allow space between yourself and fellow pedestrians.

Six feet for social distancing is the current rule of thumb, although more is sometimes recommended for runners or other exercisers who may be breathing more forcefully. Always consider that spacing as you approach and pass others. You can also consider wearing a mask.

To avoid congestion on crowded paths, run at off hours or explore less traveled routes—think industrial areas and rural options.

Remember, when you do see a fellow runner, smile and wave—you are just trying to keep everyone safe, not dodge the zombie apocalypse.

Take care of your joints

Running is a high impact exercise that puts  load your joints, a load to which your legs might not yet be accustomed.

The average runner completing a 10-minute mile takes more than 1,700 steps per mile, and your major joints feel the impact of every single one.

If you’re not used to running, make sure you have high quality shoes and consider adding a supplement to your regimen that contains glucosamine and chondroitin, like Nutrilite™ Joint Health, to support flexibility and mobility. Healthy joints make running more enjoyable and can keep you on the path longer.

A woman wearing capri leggings and running shoes is shown from the back as she walks carrying a water bottle.

Look for gratitude

If you are running, that means your body is healthy and working. While you’re out there, try to find other things you are thankful for—the beautiful view, the sun, your legs (even if they are sore!).

The practice of gratitude helps you focus on the enjoyment you can get from running rather than the discomfort that can accompany it.

And remember, sometimes the stress relief running can offer is better than the fitness benefits—especially now. By getting your heart rate up, you can relieve stress and bring into focus the positive things in your life.

Looking for more tips for a healthy lifestyle? Check out our other blogs at Amway Connections. And to learn more about Nutrilite Joint Health and other supplements that might help your new hobby, visit amway.com.

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