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Born To Jog

By: Tim Yahr ( Fairhope High School C-Country Head Coach)

Everyone was born to jog.  Even the people on shows like “The Biggest Loser” get out and jog.  Rocky jogged up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of art on his way to 5 sequels, babies jog soon after they learn to walk, and most U.S. presidents jog often.  So here are some easy tips for the successful fulfillment of your natural born jogging potential.
TIP #1 – START SMART.  Start with some sort of jog/walk routine.    I would suggest jogging for 2 minutes and walking for 1 minute.  Do this for a total of 20 minutes.  Give yourself a couple weeks to get used to it and then maybe go for 3jog/1walk.  I’ve had people start like this and they would be jogging 25+ miles per week a year later.
TIP #2 – JOG. DON’T RUN. JOG.  Start going very slowly.  So slowly you might be able to walk faster than you are jogging.  Many people tell me, “I can’t jog.  I go a small distance and I’m out of breath.”  Usain Bolt only runs 100 meters and he’s out of breath, too.  You aren’t Usain Bolt – slow down!
TIP #3 – LIE AND BRIBE (…but only to yourself).  Lie to yourself by saying things like, “If you make it to that street corner, you can stop.”  Bribe yourself with an extra scoop of ice cream for dessert at supper or getting french fries with your burger.  I guess I could have called it motivate and reward, but those don’t get your attention.
TIP #4 – FOOD IS PAIN.  Watch what you eat before you jog.  If you jog just after you awake, consider not eating anything before you finish your jog.  Don’t eat greasy food or large pieces of meat or spicy food or lots of milk or carbonated beverages sometimes even 3 hours before you jog.  Everyone is different, you’ll figure it out.  After you jog, eat – eat a lot.
TIP #5 – DON’T DO IT IF YOU AREN’T GOING TO DO IT.  You’ll need to jog at least 3 times one week and 4 times the next – 7 times every 2 weeks.  Split up your runs so that you are jogging maybe Mon/Wed/Fri or Mon/Thu/ Sat or Tue/Fri/Sun for a week with 3 runs.
TIP #6 – GOLDILOCKS YOUR SHOES.  Don’t go crazy one way or the other; get your shoes just right.  Don’t get shoes with huge heels, don’t get shoes that are paper thin and don’t get shoes with toes.  Get some with moderately thick cushions.  You do what you like, listen to your doctor or other shoe/foot expert; but I suggest you get running flats or spikeless.  And always on sale.  I have maybe paid more than $50 for a pair of shoes once in my whole life.  My last 4 pair were $30 each.
TIP #7 – MUF, OF, IF, EEF.  Run opposite of way that the Giant at the top of Jack’s Beanstalk did it.  Be light and quick with your steps.  A good way to do this is to move your arms back-and-forth just a little faster than you usually do.  Just a bit faster now, don’t go crazy on me.  Your feet should be very quiet with your light and quick self.
RAPID FIRE TIPS – Don’t run on concrete any more than is absolutely necessary – Take water with you – Run in shady areas – Run facing traffic unless on a running path – Run with others if you can – Write your running schedule down in a prominent place and look at it at least twice daily – Enjoy yourself !!!!!
Tim Yahr has coached cross country / track & field at Fairhope High in Fairhope, AL, for about 15 years.  Contact him at TYAHR@bcbe.org if you need further assistance.  “Born to Run” was a very popular book by Christopher McDougall – hopefully I am not infringing on some sort of copyright with my title.
Before you begin any exercise program, consult your physician about participating in an exercise program. Not all exercises are suitable for everyone. If you feel discomfort or pain, do not continue. The instructions and advice presented are in no way intended as a substitute for medical counseling.