How To Start Running Even If You Hate Running

How To Start Running Even If You Hate Running
Photo by Chander R / Unsplash

You don’t have to hate running

There are a lot of people that wish that they liked running but have never been able to get into it.

The major complaints go like this:

“I need to stop.”

“My ankles hurt.”

“My knee hurts.”

“I can’t even run for 5 minutes.”

“I get so out of breath.”

“I’ll never be in running shape.”

Some of these thoughts are self-defeating thoughts. Humans were born to run. We all have the ability to run.

Warm Up

Warming up is essential when you start off running. This is especially true if you are running first thing in the morning. Your body hasn’t heated up yet from waking up.

If you plan on running first thing in the morning, I would recommend extending your warm-up to make sure your body is loose before your feet hit the pavement or a trail.

Doing a dynamic warm-up versus stretching. Stretching on cold muscles is usually a no-no.

When doing a dynamic warm-up you want to warm up with motion. Start off your runs doing something like this.

• Start off a warm-up by doing a super light jog just a few hundred feet.

• High knees for about 20 meters

• Butt kicks for about 20 meters

• Deep lunges for about 10 meters

• Side shuffle for about 20 meters

• Karaoke running drill for about 20 meters

• Frankenstein walks for about 20 meters

My recommendation for this warm-up is to do it until your body feels warmed up. This can vary from individual to individual.

Photo by Alex Shaw / Unsplash

Run Slow

I would make a bet that a majority of people that can’t run a mile without stopping are running too fast. Start off your running easy. The easiest way to gauge your speed with this is to run on the treadmill because you can set it at a fixed speed.

If you’re a beginner to running, set the treadmill to like 4.5-5 mph on your first runs. If it feels like it’s too easy for the first 5 minutes, you’re doing it right. Keep that pace up for the time that you want to run too. Work your way up to being able to do this for about 30 minutes.

If you don’t have access to a treadmill and need to run outside. Gauge it by your breath. If you can’t talk in sentences while you are running, you’re going too hard.

Run on the treadmill for 4.5-5 mph. Instead of trying to increase speed, increase your duration. Start off with about 10 minutes and work your way up to 30 minutes over the course of about a month. This would increase your time by about 5 minutes a week for 4 weeks.

Follow a similar formula running outside. Run slow when running outside. Again, this probably will feel painfully slow. Remember, it’s not about going fast, it’s about going far.

Photo by Andrew Valdivia / Unsplash

Cool Down

Cooldowns are underrated. They may be one of the most important parts of recovering for the next day that most people neglect.

These are the things that are great for a cool down:

• Foam rolling.

• Static stretching.

• Lacrosse ball to massage any tight areas.

A great cool-down will make you feel great and want to get out there to crush your next run!


A lot of people make these common mistakes when they start off running. Most peoples experiences of running are from team sports when they were in school and any sport outside of Track and Field and Cross Country are a different type of running than most people are used to.

Some of this will be retraining the body to move in a way that it has never been used to. Once get acclimated and get used to it. You will find a joy in running that you never thought you could have had.