A 12 Step Plan for Transitioning to Minimalist Running Shoes:
1) Get a pair of minimalist running shoes.
These are the most comfortable and lightest running shoes available today. They are made from high quality materials such as Nylon, Lycra, Spandex, etc… You will need these types of shoes if you want to run at your maximum potential speed while minimizing impact force on your body.
2) Buy a pair of running socks.
If you don’t have any, then buy some cheap ones from the local store or online. Don’t use cotton socks because they absorb water and cause blisters. Instead, wear socks with a little bit of stretch so that when you walk around barefoot, your feet do not get sore after just one day’s usage. Also make sure to keep them clean!
3) Wear a belt.
It helps to support your weight and keeps your legs straight during the running phase. Make sure it is strong enough to hold up your pants. Keep in mind that you will need to adjust it according to your own body shape and size.
4) Avoid wearing tight fitting clothes.
Tight clothing causes pressure on the skin which leads to irritation and pain later on in the running phase. Running in the nude is not necessary, but wearing loose clothing is highly recommended. If you wear briefs or boxers, then make sure to wear a brand new pair to avoid chafing and rashes.
5) Protect your feet from cuts, bruises and other injuries.
Use tape to cover up your toes and the top of your foot. Elbow and knee pads can also help protect certain parts of your body that are prone to swelling when running.
6) Get yourself an athletic supporter to avoid unnecessary pain in that region.
7) Wear a watch or a bracelet that tells the time, the distance you have travelled and your speed.
It’s also very useful if it has a GPS function so that you can save the coordinates of where you ran and look at a map of the route you took after your run.
8) Bring water and energy gels with you when running for longer periods of time.
Start out small with water or maybe some orange juice, but energy gels are recommended for longer runs because it gives you more stamina to finish your run.
9) For longer distance running, bring food that can be eaten on the go.
Sandwiches, fruit, granola bars, etc… are all good food to eat whilst running for long distances. Don’t eat too much before a run however, because if you do happen to throw up, then this is a sign that your stomach can’t take the food volume you put into it.
10) Don’t wear brand new running shoes for a long distance run for the first time. Get a feel of your shoe first by walking around in them.
11) When you start feeling pain during or after a run, don’t continue to push yourself, instead, rest and recover. It does you no good to damage your body for the sake of running.
12) Most importantly, have fun whilst running. If you don’t enjoy it, then there is no point in running in the first place.
13) If you really want to get serious and go professional, then visit your local sports store and ask for tips and advice on how to run faster. They can also fit you with the best running shoe suited to your needs.
That concludes part one of our two part article on how to start running. In part two, we will discuss running technique, advanced running tips and answer some frequently asked questions. So until then, keep on running and stay healthy!
To learn more about the science behind running, check out these books (Amazon Affiliate Links)
The Runner’s Body: A Training and Nutrition Guide: From injury prevention to nutrition and training tips for runners of all skill levels.
Understanding theFemaleBody: A Female Muscular System: For Women Fitness Trainers, Exercise enthusiasts and Athletes.
Unlock Your Hip Flexors : A Step-by-Step Guide to Strengthen Your Hip Flexors, Release Your Hips and Prevent Incarcerated Hips
Sources & references used in this article:
Promoting health through organizational change by HA Skinner – 2002 – sites.utoronto.ca
Aquatic step exercise apparatus by PH Hand, WJ Saunders, E Goldstein… – US Patent …, 1994 – Google Patents
Beyond Belief: Agnostic Musings for 12 Step Life: finally, a daily reflection book for nonbelievers, freethinkers and everyone. by C Joe – 2013 – books.google.com
An exploratory study of gait and functional outcomes after neuroprosthesis use in children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy by AF Bailes, C Caldwell, M Clay, M Tremper… – Disability and …, 2017 – Taylor & Francis
Foot and Ankle Kinematic and Lower Extremity Muscle Activity During Descent from Varying Step Heights by E Gerstle – 2014 – dc.uwm.edu
Recovery Poets, Recovery Workers: Labor and Place in the Dialogical Way‐Finding of Homeless Addicts in Therapy by JS Bowles – Anthropology of Consciousness, 2016 – Wiley Online Library