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Get Ready to Run: The American Council Offers a Few Tips

03/13/2017 08:30PM ● Published by Melanie Heisinger

After a long, cold winter, those of us who aren’t winter-sport enthusiasts are eager to come out of hibernation and get moving again. As the snow slowly begins to melt, the sun starts to feel a little warmer, and the days get a little longer, going outside for a run is an invigorating, fun, and effective form of exercise. But as with any exercise, it requires some preparation (beyond buying a fabulous new pair of kicks).

The American Council on Exercise offers the following recommendations on what to do before you start running:

  • Allow time for a pre-run warmup and a post-run cooldown.
  • Take it easy—don’t go beyond what’s comfortable for you. Listen to your body and cut back on intensity, duration, or frequency when you feel sore. When you finish running, talking out loud for 30 seconds should be challenging but not very difficult.
  • Never increase your mileage by more than 10 percent per week.

Especially in March and April, springtime can look—and feel—a lot like winter, so it’s important to stay warm and dry. To keep warmth in and the slush out, choose sneakers that have the least amount of mesh. Wear socks that wick away moisture but keep your feet warm (many cold-weather runners swear by SmartWool socks). Dress in layers that wick sweat with zippers at the neck and underarm area to allow ventilation as you heat up. And don’t forget your gloves and a hat.

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