Get the right gear
Once you’ve decided to try out running, it’s time to get yourself new shoes, as the wrong pair can cause foot pain. “Walking and running are two different kinesiological phenomena, and should be treated as such from the ground up,” says personal trainer Amanda Dale. “Running shoes should encourage a midfoot strike—rather than the heel strike that most of us use while walking—and provide proper cushioning to combat your foot’s natural pronation (inward rotation) or supination (outward rotation). Getting a professional gait analysis and shoe fitting is typically a free service available at any major running store.”
Start off slow
Once you decide to begin a running routine, you’ll want to ease yourself into it, and ratios are a great way to start off slow. “I always train my new runners with walk-to-run ratios—say, three minutes walking to 30 seconds running,” says Dale. “This way, there’s a specific structure for how much running has to be done, and the client doesn’t feel overwhelmed by the task of running itself.” Continue to build in 30-second intervals until the run and walk ratios are equal. Then work in reverse until the walking interval is zero. You can use an app such as Seconds Interval Timer to help build ratios for you.