How do we do it?
The programme that I use is the one I used myself – it’s a very simple concept, all we do is alternate between walking and running.
In each session we will walk a little less and run a little more until before you know it – after 24 sessions on average – you will be running for 35 minutes non-stop. This generally equates to a distance of around 5k.
Don’t worry, it really isn’t. The amount you run increases in such a manner that you don’t really notice it. Your body gets used to the exercise and you will find yourself saying at the end of each session “I can do a little more next time.”
Again, I’m aware that you may be highly sceptical but please remember, I have been in your shoes. It is highly unlikely you are any less fit than I once was, and if I can run 5k in 8 weeks, it’s more than likely that you can too.
What happens in a session?
Each session begins with a five minute warm up walk. As we are only running quite short distances this is perfectly adequate to get your body warmed up and ready to go, but as you develop a bit more our warm ups could get a little more dynamic.
If you are a complete beginner, your first session is one minute running and one and a half minutes walking, and this is repeated six times. It may not sound like much, but believe me, from experience, if you haven't exercised for a while it will seem like a marathon!
If you are slightly fitter than an absolute beginner then you will start a little further down the line, but we will assess that before we start. Each session ends with a five minute cool down walk and some stretching. The stretching will ensure that any aches and pains you may feel the next day are purely as a result of using muscles that have been asleep for quite a while and nothing more sinister.
Each session can be completed within around 50 minutes - if we chat and grab a quick takeaway latte, it'll be longer!
But I really REALLY hate running!
My first client as Your Running Mate opened the door to me on our first session with the words “I hate running. I’m only doing this to prove that I can.” She enjoyed our session so much that when I arrived home there was a message from her increasing the amount of weekly sessions.
Another client, Laura was adamant she would hate it. Another client, Sarah was convinced she would only last one session – you get the picture. There is something about running that becomes an addiction – if you do it properly, you will love it forever.
My great hope is that you will start running and fall in love with it - in order to do that though you have to enjoy it, and "enjoyment" and "exercise" aren't always two words you see together! In terms of enjoying running, from my experience (as with anything) you enjoy what you are good at.
It sounds a bit odd, but if you "learn" to run properly and to build up your stamina in the correct manner, you will see yourself getting better and better every session and it's from that that the enjoyment comes. I can also promise you that I will do my utmost to ensure we have a good giggle during each session!