Do you want to fulfill old promises and start running before the Christmas holidays? Here are our tips from a professional runner and a pharmacist

As autumn begins, more people return to their normal working routines. It’s easy to get caught up in work and forget to take care of our health, which eventually leads us to neglect more active physical activity. Although it may seem harder to start running in autumn than in summer, it can actually be a great way to distract yourself from the worries at work or at home. That’s why Egidijus Adomkaitis, a professional runner, and Eimantas Skalandis, a pharmacist at Eurovaistinė, share their tips on how to complete the 12-kilometer distance before the holidays if you start jogging today.

What could the first training session look like?

The most common mistakes made by novice runners are due to running too fast, says runner Egidijus Adomkaitis. For beginners, he believes that slower and shorter running should be a priority.

“Beginners should alternate running with walking. The first workout could be to run for 2 minutes at a pace where you can still talk freely and then walk for 1 minute at a faster pace. This should be done 3 or 4 times in a row. The most important thing is not to overdo it once you’ve started running and not to run too fast. The goal should be to make the walking intervals shorter and the running intervals longer over time. Eventually, it will evolve into a seamless run,” advises the runner.

The principles of running in a correct way

The runner advises not to get too tired when you start running, to “scan” and feel yourself: make sure your neck is not tight, shoulders and arms should be relaxed, and moving freely.

“The feet should be placed from the midfoot and not from the heel. As for breathing, the aim is to get as much oxygen as possible, so you should try to inhale and exhale as much as possible. I would recommend breathing through the mouth, or through the nose and mouth together. Don’t restrict your breathing,” says E. Adomkaitis.

How to develop a running habit?

The runner emphasizes that it is better to run several times for a few minutes than to run once for half an hour and never run again.

“You should try to run more often, but less – that way you’ll develop a habit and running won’t become a burden and you’ll get used to it. It is very important to keep an eye on the intensity, not to overdo it – the runs have to be really very calm and controlled. Always make sure you can speak while running. In addition, I would advise you to take your time when increasing your running distance. If you feel like it, increase the number of kilometers you run per week by 10 percent,” advises Adomkaitis.

It is also important to strengthen your health

To achieve the desired running results without major injuries, Eimantas Skalandis, a pharmacist at Eurovaistinė, explains how to strengthen your body with vitamins. He identifies what should be in the medicine cabinet of every beginner runner’s home.

Magnesium and B vitamins. Helps maintain a healthy energy metabolism and reduces fatigue. A deficiency of these vitamins can be indicated by cramps and numbness in the limbs.

Electrolytes. When you run, you sweat out electrolytes, which are important for regulating water intake and metabolism in the body. It is therefore advisable to take instant electrolyte drinks after exercise.

Food supplements for joints. These can include collagen, glucosamine, and vitamins C and D. They nourish cartilage, tendons, and muscles, and make movement comfortable. They are recommended as preventive measures.

Ointment for pain or inflammation

A cooling ointment for pain should be in your home medicine cabinet. It will help relieve joint and muscle pain.

The runner and pharmacist encourage that if you set a goal today to run 12 kilometers before the holidays, you can do it safely, healthily, and with cheer. According to them, the joy of completing the first full distance can also be combined with a special occasion, such as the Eurovaistinė Christmas Evening Run in Vilnius on 10 December. In addition to the 12, 6, or 3-kilometer courses, participants can also choose the Elf Run for the little ones.