5 mistakes newbies to running make

Road running as a form of exercise is increasingly taken up across India. The spur in marathon registrations across the country is a definite indication of this trend. Women, men and people across all age groups and professions are making the commitment to their bodies and pushing themselves to run.

Today, a big gut and frequent indulgences at expensive restaurants are no longer the mark of a smart and prosperous person. Urban Indians have a growing awareness of the susceptibility to diabetes and obesity. With this in mind, many want to regain health, reduce weight, look trim and bring discipline into their lives. Running becomes a part of their routine and helps them achieve this.

While this is a positive trend overall, for the newbies, a lack of knowledge on proper training and nutrition often leads to injury and burnout. S & C expert Shankar Basu provides the top five mistakes newbies make along with solutions to address them.

1.Too much too soon

Running should be a gradual progression activity.

2.No strength base

This is one of the biggest mistakes runners make which often leads to injuries. Basic strength training is essential for muscle and joint health and helps you run better and improve your timing.

3.No emphasis on mobility. 

Basu believes that a combination of strength work and dynamic mobility is more important than just stretching.

4.Lack of periodization and a plan with regards to mileage

One needs a methodical approach to improve mileage (depending on goals of distance vs speed) by having a running program. This weekly plan has to be assessed periodically to experience improvement

5.Poor nutrition and lifestyle

While there is a lot of information available on nutrition for runners, many find it difficult to implement given that the internet often provides generic information which might not suit individuals. Visiting a sports nutritionist is a better option than downloading diet plans off the internet.

In terms of lifestyle, running takes up immense dedication. Late nights at work and lack of sleep affects improvement and immunity. When there is a serious sleep deficit, it is wiser to get rest than to push too hard.

Solution for the above mistakes

1.Build up the mileage gradually

2.If you want to run perform some strength work (atleast for 6 weeks) and improve your resilience

3.Find a trainer to teach you some good mobility work

4.Find a coach to set up a running plan which must be followed diligently and with frequent reviews

5.See a good Strength and conditioning coach for a meal plan or a nutritionist with a background in sports nutrition. Basu strongly believes that many regular dieticians are not equipped to advise sports persons.


Shanker Basu

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Mr. Basu is the Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Indian Cricket Team and the Trainer of the Royal Challengers Bangalore. He strongly believes that one-dimensional approach to health and fitness is not enough. As a Former Track and Field sprinter who has competed at International level, Basu has incorporated Training, Therapy, Nutrition and other Lifestyle Factors into fitness and presented the same as Primal Patterns, a Bespoke Personal Training Studio.