Beginner Running Tips

Running is not only a great way to stay in shape, it can really benefit your overall health, both physical and mental. From raising levels of good cholesterol and increasing lung function, to boosting your immune system and preventing disease, to relieving stress and eliminating depression, the benefits of running seem endless. The hardest part about running is getting the motivation to just get out and do it, so here are a few running tips for beginners to make it just a little bit easier to take advantage of this awesome exercise.

Asics Kayano 18: the latest version of the legendary running shoe.

First things first: When you begin running, you need to get a really good pair of running shoes.  Without having good support and cushion, injuries such as shin splints, bad knees, or weak ankles can occur.  When I started running, I had really bad pain in my shins and it took me a couple of weeks to finally figure out that it was my shoes. I switched to Asics Kayano 18, and my shins thanked me immediately. The Kayano is gradually becoming a “legendary” shoe in the running community, and the 18th edition  lives up to its reputation with all around support and just that little bit of extra cushion for comfort.  These shoes are great for any terrain, including the road, trail, or track.

Another great running shoe is the lightweight and breathable  Brooks PureFlow.  The PureFlow is made to be more street specific, and comes in a variety of awesome colors for men, women, and kids. Just think; your whole family running around the neighborhood in a rainbow of different PureFlow shoes. Your neighbors will be saying “What a stylish and healthy family!” In hot weather, this shoe would be a great pick for its breathability and almost minimalist feel.

Brooks PureFlow Collection for men, women, and kids.

When you’ve found your perfect shoe and decide to start running, start slowly.  Don’t push yourself into running five miles the first day. Start out with about a mile and if that feels like a breeze, go up in distance the next time or switch to a faster pace.  If you want to

Nathan Hydration Products make sure your water levels are just right while on the go.

run longer distances, be sure to stay hydrated!  Take a Nathan water bottle holster to strap on while you are on your run. This way you won’t have to stop to take a water break, and you’ll have a place for essentials like your phone and keys.

One thing you need to do before and after you start your run is to stretch!  Loosen those hamstrings and calves with the Trigger Point Therapy Performance Kit and the Trigger Point revolutionary foam roller.  There have been a few days when I go out for a run and think I’ll be fine without stretching, and I ALWAYS regret it. Trust me, you will feel it in the morning! The performance kit comes with DVDs and lots of instructions to properly roll out your specific muscles.  You will be feeling much happier if you stretch before and after running. With these tips, you’ll soon be on your way to getting all the amazing benefits of running. Get the shoes, stretching advice, and athletic apparel you need to get started right here at www.doddsshoe.com.

To Be Minimal Or Not To Be Minimal

One of the great debates we have here at Dodds Shoe Company is the new trend in running shoes…minimal running shoes.  Maybe the first known shoe to dabble in this market was the Nike Free in 2005, allowing runners to increase foot strength by having less on their foot.

Born To Run

The Free sold well, but it was a book called “Born To Run” that really peaked the interest of runners with the introduction to barefoot running.  Vibram Five Fingers, or “those funny toes shoes” became an overnight sensation and had many runners rushing to their favorite running stores to buy a pair.

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Bikilas

Being that I like to run and am up for anything, I soon bought my first pair of Five Fingers. I definitely got a lot of strange looks and many people stopped to ask me what I was wearing, but I have enjoyed them.  I began running in them.  While difficult at first (the day after my first run, I thought I was going to die), I soon began to experience what the hype was all about.  Becoming more of a midfoot-to-forefoot striker vs. a heel striker has made me a more efficient runner and lighter on my feet.  That is a good thing.

Vibram Five Fingers lists the following as the “5 Reasons To Wear Or Train In VFF’s”

  1. Strengthens muscles in feet and lower legs.
  2. Improves range of motion in ankles, feet, and toes.
  3. Stimulates neural function.  Important to balance and agility.
  4. Eliminates heel lift to align the spine and improve posture.
  5. Allows the foot and body to move more naturally, which just feels good.

Not everyone likes the look of monkey feet, so New Balance and Merrell have teamed with VFF and have created their own barefoot shoes.  The New Balance Minimus and the Merrell Trail Glove/Pace Glove are great alternatives to the VFF.

So, here is where it gets interesting.  Many customers come to our store asking if this is good for you.  The most common question we hear is, “do these shoes have good arch support?”.  The theory behind barefoot running is to run in a more natural state with shorter, quicker strides that gives you better alignment.  The shoes do not have arch support, but will strengthen your foot to support itself.  I’ll let you decide for yourself if these shoes are right for you.  Personally, I like them and prefer to do all of my running and training in a minimal shoe.

Asics Gel Neo33

Asics Gel Neo33

Still not convinced?  Look at the Asics Gel Neo33, the

Brooks PureFlow

Brooks PureFlow

Brooks PureFlow, and the Saucony Kinvara. Here are 3 shoes that still provide some structure and cushioning while following the trend of a “less is more” shoe.

 

Saucony Kinvara

Saucony Kinvara

Be sure to visit https://www.doddsshoe.com/ to check out the latest in minimal running shoes.  In the meantime, get out and enjoy pounding the pavement.