Top six excuses not to run and how to overcome them

Oct 24, 2011 by

exercise for seniors

Anyone can enjoy jogging

Top six excuses not to run and how to overcome them
Are you one of those people who instantly say ’I couldn’t possibly go running’.

The benefits of sport, or running specifically, for older people are quite clear. Weight bearing exercise helps counteract the depletion of oestrogen levels in women and also reduces the risk of cardio-vascular disease in both sexes. The release of endorphins makes us feel happy and positive not to mention the calorie burning effect of exercise. When we run regularly we feel lithe, springy and energetic. So why we don’t we all rush out and pound the pavements regularly? There are as many reasons as there are people, however here are the most common ones and how we can overcome them.

I can’t run because:

1. I feel silly
Self consciousness can be hard to combat but over time it will disappear. Drive to an area where you feel safe, that is discreet and where you will not bump into your neighbour. As you achieve your goals one by one, your confidence and optimism will grow.

2. I’m too unfit or fat
Start with a walking regime. One of the best ways I have found is to go out on a planned route and jog for a minute or two and then walk for a few minutes, then jog, then walk. Gradually you will be able to increase the jogging minutes and decrease the walking minutes. Remember to wear loose fitting comfy clothing, you don’t have to wear the latest fluoro lycra.

3. I’m too old
Tell that to the 156 finishers over 70 in the London Marathon 2011! Age is no barrier to starting as many stories will testify. You just have to take it gently and more slowly. Running when older can be just as beneficial as when you were young.

4. I’m no good at running
How good do you want to be? We are running for pleasure and health benefits. It does not matter one jot how fast or slow you are. Smile, enjoy the fresh air and remember it is not a race unless you want it to be.

5. I don’t want to run on my own
Join a running club or cajole a friend into accompanying you. Most towns have running clubs with sections for beginners. Advertise locally for a running companion, you may be surprised at the new friendships you may make.

6. I’m too busy
Plan and organise your day around a 15-30 minute break to get out and run. Running is one of the easiest sports to fit in as you don’t need to pay, book a court, travel to a gym or have an opponent. You can just put on your running shoes wherever you are and walk or run out of the door.

Of course if you have never run before you should have a medical check-up with your doctor before embarking on a training regime but once given the all clear try following a new runners training schedule and take it easy. Allow extra recovery time between sessions and repeat the early weeks if you find it too hard.

We all need positive encouragement and achievements over a longer timeframe are still achievements you can take pride in.

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