Woman stretching at park before jogging

Jogging: 5 Tips for Beginners

As one of the most time-tested ways to exercise, jogging offers a plethora of benefits to even the least experienced gym fanatic. Besides helping you achieve your weight loss goals, jogging helps your blood flow throughout your entire body. This can reduce the risk of heart damage and strokes later on in life. If done properly, it’s relatively low stress on your body. The reason many fitness fans frown on jogging is due to the number of people who fail to perform the exercise safely. There are a few key points that you need to follow before setting off on the scenic route. We’ve got 5 jogging tips which will help beginners get off on the right foot.

1. Start Slowly

Jogging is a hobby you can pick up overnight, but not one you can master immediately. Jogging, as with any sport, is about endurance. If you want it to work in the long run, you have to stick with it. This means going too fast, too soon will lead to burnout and you won’t want to do it. Instead of launching into a mile-in-5-minutes-or-nothing mindset, start with a slower tempo. Your workout isn’t the same as gym class, and no one is timing you. Take the time to enjoy your jog by going slowly at first. You can pick up the pace as you become more comfortable.

2. Short Running Intervals Lead to Longer Habits

As with any workout or weight loss plan, forming habits is more important than going for a quick fix. One of the most important jogging tips we can give any beginner is to keep your intervals short. There’s a reason the Couch To 5K program is so popular! By keeping short intervals (such as 3 minutes of jogging, 3 minutes of walking), you can build up to a challenging pace. A beginner who tries to jog a mile on their first go will feel discouraged and not want to continue the habit. One who opts for the patient approach will stick with it and ultimately see better results.

3. Pay Attention to Your Form

You may have heard the weightlifters at your local gym touting ‘form overweight’, but the same principle applies for jogging. Jogging can be detrimental to your joints if you don’t have the proper form. To avoid any long-term damage, keep your back straight and your strides short. Your hands should naturally form fists as you jog, and your elbows should never lock. Keep your body relatively relaxed and avoid leaning forward. This keeps your momentum going without straining your body.

4. Cross Train with Weights or Classes 

Jogging is an excellent workout by itself, but it’s effectiveness shoots through the roof if you combine it with another form of exercise. This is called cross-training, and it can be done with almost any workout regimen. Many people who enjoy jogging like to go to yoga or Pilates classes to keep their muscles limber. This is an excellent idea if flexibility is your goal, but our jogging tip is to balance out the cardio with strength training. Even very light weightlifting can help tone your body and build muscle, which makes every workout easier.

5. Make Sure to Rest

Our last jogging tip is something that applies to all weight loss programs: make sure to rest! Many people who launch into a fitness program go too hard, too fast and fail. Long term success means sticking with something long term. If you feel bad about taking a day off, don’t! You can make up for the lower physical activity with a healthy diet or fat burner shot. Part of being healthy is allowing your body to recover. Overwhelming yourself won’t do much besides stressing out your body, which is counterproductive to your weight loss goals. For more exercise tips and weight loss coaching contact Advance Medical Weight Loss & Wellness Center.

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