Tips for the Newbie Runner

Happy Friday!

There was such an HUGE response to Project TRANSFORM!  I am sooooo excited!  A big group of you are doing the Couch 2 5k as your health goal so I asked Hiker Mom, Rachelle, to pop over and give us all some beginner running tips!  She is a wife and mother of 2 active boys.  She is a certified running coach and is currently in the process of getting certified as a personal trainer. Her style of writing is fresh and witty with a healthy dose of encouragement to get you up and moving. Be sure to pop over to visit her and let her know in the comments. Thanks so much for guest posting, Rachelle! You inspire me!  She blogs over at Livin The Fit Life.

running tips for newbies

Hey all you new runners out there!  Welcome to the club.  It is an exclusive club that only runners can belong to.  Only a fellow runner will understand what you are going through, why you would want to lace up your shoes and head out at 5am to get your run in.  Only a runner will understand why you need to get to bed early on Friday night so you can do your long run on Saturday morning.  Only a runner will understand chaffing, pit stops, race fuel, and fartleks.  Oh sorry, did I scare you?  Let’s look at it this way, only a runner will understand how you feel when you run a PR (personal record), the feeling of the elusive “runner’s high”, the accomplishment of running a distance you have never run before.  Running will help you get healthy, lose weight, gain confidence, and reach goals you never thought attainable.  How does that sound?  Do you want to be a part of this club?  I know I do!

Believe me these things will come, maybe not immediately, maybe not next month, but sometime in the near future you will understand.  So for all of those who want to join the club, here are a few tips for when you are just starting out.

1. Just do it.  Don’t wait until tomorrow or next week, or next month.  Do it today.  Run to the mailbox to get your mail, run to the end of the block, run with your dog until he goes to the bathroom and then run home.  Start today and never look back.

2. Don’t start out too fast.  This is a common mistake that new runners make.  You start out too fast, then feel exhausted, out of breath, and defeated.  We don’t want that, so start slow.  No, I mean really slow.  Slower than you think you need to.  If, after a while, you feel like you can pick up the pace, then great, go for it.  But, for now, pace yourself, you are in it for the long haul.

3. Get fitted for some good running shoes.  Find a running store and get fitted.  A good pair of running shoes will cost from $85-$110 but they are so worth it.  Take the time to get the right pair.  It will save you time, blisters, and injuries in the long run.  Here is a great resource for finding the right shoe.  Personally I wear Brooks and find that they are a great option.

4. Try not to get frustrated.  Even the most seasoned runners have a bad run.  If one day you have a terrible run, don’t give up, it happens to the best of us.  The next one will be better, I promise.

5. If you are running on the road, run against traffic, that way you see the cars and can get out of the way if they don’t see you.

6. @marathonmom10 says “Don’t compare yourself to others.”  So what if tiny shorts lady can run a 7 minute pace.  You run at your pace and that’s that.  If you want to do speedwork when you have this running thing down, then by all means do it.  But do not compare yourself to others.  Running is individual.  Run for yourself, not for anyone else.

7. Kathy says “Listen to your body!! Don’t push yourself….stop if you need to stop, slow down if you need to slow down, and eventually it will all come together and you too will feel that "Runner’s High". 😉

8. Christy says “find what motivates you whether it is getting faster or losing weight or going to new distances, set a goal and work towards it in small increments.”

Remember, running is hard, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it.  Like I have said before, I used to hate running.  I would always go out too fast and feel terrible (as referenced in #2).  As you age, you tend to learn patience, and when I needed to lose weight after my second child, I came to running and asked for a second chance.  Running agreed, and we are now best friendsJ Running has not only helped me lose 30 pounds and keep it off for over 9 years, it has also given me peace, sanity, and confidence, among many other things.  So, to those who say, “but I hate running”, I say “you can grow to love it”.  As Ed would say “don’t worry it will become fun!” and I agree.  It will be hard in the beginning, but I promise it will change your life.

It is worth it, for your health, sanity, and your booty.  Now, get off that couch, lace up your new shoes, and hit the road.  You won’t be sorry!

I am an RRCA certified running coach and have been running for over 9 years.  Please ask me anything, I will either know the answer or be able to find it. 

Have a great day and happy running!

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Thanks sooooo much Hiker Mom!!!  I am going to check out the running shoes and use these tips for the couch 2 5k.

To keep up with our Project: TRANSFORM and Couch 2 5k

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What is Your Healthy?

Please welcome Rachelle from Livin’ the Fit Life.  Rachelle is a passionate runner and is currently in the process of getting certified as a personal trainer.  Her style of writing is fresh and witty with a healthy dose of encouragement to get you up and moving.   Be sure to pop over to visit her and let her know in the comments.  Thanks so much for guest posting, Rachelle!  You inspire me!

So, I may or may not have had too much caffeine, too late in the day, and I can’t sleep for the life of me.  I have been laying in bed with a thousand thoughts cascading through my head and all I want to do is go for a run.  But, it is the middle of the night and pouring down rain, so that probably isn’t the smartest or safest thing to do.  Instead, I decided to write a blog post.
I was watching a video a couple of days ago about the definition of wealth.  That we, as individuals, should have our own definition of wealth, instead of letting society define it for us.  After pondering this for a while, I decided that this principle would work for the definition of health as well. 

How do we define health vs. how society defines it for us? 
how do you define healthy

Health can be defined in so many different ways. 

~ It could mean having a BMI of 22,

~ fitting into a pair of size 8 jeans,

~ not catching as many colds during the winter,

~ running a sub 4 hour marathon. 

The spectrum of health is endless and diverse and there are people at every point along the way. I see people who are overweight running alongside the road and I think to myself  “Wow, that is so awesome that they are on their journey to being healthy!” 

Whether healthy means

~ changing one meal a day to a healthier choice,

~taking a multi-vitamin to keep the colds away,

~beginning a workout routine,

~ or adding speedwork to your running regimen,

we are all on our own journey

And to those who haven’t started their journey, what is stopping you from taking that first step?
So, I ask you, what is your healthy?  How do you define health in your life?  For those out there who haven’t started their journey to living a healthy life, what is one small step you would suggest they take?  My advice would be, define your “healthy” and make it happen.
Off to bed I go, when I fall asleep nobody knows. 

Have a great day and happy running!




vitalizer women


Fitness Friday

Welcome to Claire’s Healthy Home!  I am so glad to have you visit.

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If you are new here, Fitness Friday happens about twice a month with an encouraging post from Rachelle at Livin’ The Fit Life.  So thrilled to have her here today….


Being fit and healthy is a passion for me, especially now that I am in my 30’s and have to work harder and smarter.  I have always been a cardio girl. I love to run and this is my true passion.  However, as I got older I knew that weights needed to enter my life and I wasn’t too happy about it.

You see, after you turn 30, your body starts to lose muscle. What does that mean? That in order for your body to burn the same number of calories as it did in your twenties, you need to start building your muscles back up.  The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn.
Most women look at me funny when I tell them to lift weights.  They have the wrong idea that if you lift weights you will look like a bodybuilder with massive muscles.  Of course this won’t happen.  Lifting weights will tone your body and increase your calorie burn to make your workouts more effective.
3 great starter exercises with weights are squats, bicep curls and tricep extensions.  I don’t know about you, but triceps are an issue for many women as we don’t typically use those muscles in everyday life.
Start out with smaller weights (3-5 lbs.) and do 3 sets of 10 reps each, alternating exercises as you go.  As you move forward you can change your routine by increasing your weight and your reps.  You can then start to add more exercises to your routine to change your overall body.
I am also a huge proponent for using your own body weight for resistance.  I like this method because you can work out at home with just yourself and nothing else.  Examples of these type of exercises would be push-ups, crunches, tricep dips, etc.  This way you can build your muscles without having to spend money on weights or the gym.  Also, for moms with young children at home, you can stay at home and still get your sweat on:)

I hope you will all add some weight training to your workout regimen.  Your body will thank you!

Now everyone get your sweat on and start Livin The Fit Life!



Fitness Friday

Contributor Post by Rachelle….

Often when people start an exercise routine, they wonder just exactly how many calories are being burned during their activities. It can be quite confusing. To know this information can help, especially when you are trying to lose weight. I found a great website where you can type in your weight and your activity and it will tell you approximately how many calories you are burning.

Here are a couple of examples for you:

150 lb. woman

60 minutes Bodypump class=500 depending on effort

60 minutes Spin class=675 depending on effort

60 minutes Running 6mph=684

60 minutes Walking 4mph=381

60 minutes Pilates intermediate=351

60 minutes sex =288

220 lb. man

60 minutes Bodypump class=607 depending on effort

60 minutes Spin class=1003 depending on effort

60 minutes Running=1135

60 minutes Walking=515

4 hours of golf carrying own clubs=2429

4 hours of golf using cart=1373

Of course these can go up or down depending on how hard a person is pushing themselves, muscle mass, and weights/tension used.

Here are the calories of a few of our favorite foods/drinks that can be easily eliminated from someone’s diet and make a big difference in weight loss.

1-6 oz. glass of wine=120

1 chocolate chip cookie (homemade)=78

1 12 oz. soda=140

1 coffee shop latte=150 (depending on what is added/type of milk etc.)

A pound of body fat equals 3500 calories. With a bit of extra activity and by eliminating a few indulgences, you are well on your way to a healthy and active lifestyle!

Let today be the day you decide to make a change. Let today be the day you decide to be healthy.

Now I know there are many reasons or excuses to not take this leap. No support at home, busy schedule, don’t know where/ how to start. I read a great running quote today.

“The only one who can tell you ‘you can’t’ is you. And you don’t have to listen” -Nike

Don’t you love that! YOU make the choice. YOU make the change. YOU feel the satisfaction. YOU reap the benefits.

Make the choice to be healthy today. You won’t regret it, I promise!



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