Anchorage RunFest wants to help our runners in whatever way we can. We offer this training section merely as a guide, and with the best intentions, but we cannot guarantee nor be responsible for your outcomes.
There is no set formula to getting started so begin by picking a distance you feel is doable for your goals and situation. You will have backing and support from the Anchorage RunFest team as well as your training group and / or friends -- whichever you choose. Make the decision, commit, and begin. If that means just getting out the door, that’s great! Even if it’s just jogging around the block, just do it!
- Know your reason for taking on this challenge. Make it fun and desirable, something you will be proud of.
- Be aware of personal medical conditions. If you have any doubt about medical issues, get checked out. Take any health limitations into account in your training but also know anything is possible. Many people go beyond what they think they can do and make it happen. Most importantly, be safe and responsible about your training and trust your medical care. Physicians and physical therapists can be a great source to help you achieve your goals.
- Assemble the proper gear. What should you wear?
- Shoes are very important and will be your biggest expense. Anchorage has several stores carrying athletic shoes. (We are partial to one of our race sponsors, Skinny Raven!) Get on the treadmill and have a sales rep see if you under or over pronate and have them determine what type of shoe would work best for you.
- You’ll find your clothing options are vast; pick pieces that suit your needs. Let comfort rule. You’ll be spending many hours in these clothes so make sure they fit well.
- Avoiding cotton is a good rule. Cotton holds moisture and causes blisters, chafing, and sweat retention. In cold weather cotton can be a factor leading to hypothermia. For best wicking performance, choose clothing (including socks!) made of polyester, polyester blends, or natural wool.
- Your running wardrobe should consist of layers. The number you put on will depend on the weather on a given day. Be prepared to add a layer if it gets cold during your run or to wrap one around your waist if the temperature rises.
- Do you need to carry keys or food? Look for articles with pockets. Water repellent or resistant clothing works well in the rain. Windbreakers help on blustery days.
- On a tight budget? Check thrift stores. Check with friends for things they may want to pass along; one person’s old items are another’s new! Online sources include Roadrunner Sports. On the local scene, we think Skinny Raven is awesome!
- Start smart and build a base. The distance you start with depends on your base. A good rule of thumb is to increase your mileage no more than 10% each week. You don’t have to go a certain distance to make it ‘count’ or be worthwhile. Anything is better than nothing. Give yourself a positive start and know that a jog around the block may be yours. It’s okay!