How to overcome the initial physical discomfort of running?

Not faster is better

Running Tips for Beginners

Running faster and running more are not always better for beginners. Many beginners have the misconception that running faster and running more will lead to better results, but in reality, this mindset often leads to discomfort and even injuries.

Running Faster is Not Better

As a beginner, it’s important to understand your purpose for running. When you start running, it’s crucial to assess your current ability. Many beginners start off running at a fast pace, but they quickly become out of breath, their hearts feel like they’re about to jump out of their chests, and their legs feel heavy and sore, making it difficult to keep running.

Feeling this way is a sign that you’re running too fast. When beginners first start running, their aerobic capacity is relatively weak, and their bodies cannot meet the oxygen demands of high-intensity exercise. As a result, the body relies on anaerobic metabolism, which produces and accumulates lactic acid, leading to fatigue.

To alleviate this discomfort, beginners should start with aerobic jogging. This means keeping your heart rate between 60-85% of your maximum heart rate or running at a pace where you can easily carry on a conversation. After a period of aerobic jogging, your aerobic capacity will improve. Once you have established a solid aerobic foundation, you can incorporate speed training, which will enable you to run faster and farther.

Running More is Not Better

Many people believe that the more they run and the higher the intensity, the better their running ability will become. As a result, they run without rest every day and even compare their running volume with others. However, this mindset can lead to discomfort and injuries.

Running training benefits our physical endurance but also accumulates fatigue. If the fatigue reaches a certain level without being relieved, you will feel very uncomfortable, and your legs will feel heavy, making it difficult to continue running. If the fatigue is not alleviated over time, it can lead to overuse injuries. Once you have a sports injury, the recovery time will be even longer. Therefore, haste makes waste.

To address this issue, it is crucial to schedule appropriate rest. A reasonable approach is to alternate running and rest days, such as running one day and taking one day off, or running two days and taking one day off. It is recommended to run 3-4 times a week, not exceeding 5 times. Additionally, it is important to have a complete rest day with no physical activity. Physical improvement is achieved through rest. If you do not give your body enough time to rest, your training will only bring fatigue and not lead to improved physical endurance.

Running Alone is Not Enough

Many beginners think that running is a simple exercise - just put one foot in front of the other and run. However, there are many other aspects to consider. First, every run should not just be about running; it should include warm-up exercises before running, running itself, and stretching after running.

You can find warm-up and stretching exercises in various fitness apps, such as Keep, GuDong, and YuePaoQuan. It is recommended that beginners open these apps and follow the workout routines before and after running.

If you run a long distance, it is also necessary to do some post-run recovery, such as getting a massage or using a foam roller to release muscle tension. If your muscles are particularly tight, using a foam roller is an effective way to relax.

You can find tutorials on how to use a foam roller online.

Strength training is often overlooked by beginners. It’s important to know that muscle strength plays a crucial role in running performance and injury prevention. Therefore, running is not just about running; it should also include dedicated time for strength training. This includes training for upper body strength, lower body strength, and core strength. Strength training should be done at least twice a week. Proper strength training not only improves running efficiency, allowing you to run farther and with less effort, but also greatly reduces the risk of injury.

开始运动的逐渐提速好过渡 - Start with a gradual increase in speed

Take it slow and keep going. For those who don’t exercise regularly, if you run too fast, there may be a smell of blood. This is caused by infrequent exercise. In fact, this situation can be easily solved. Jog at a pace of 70% capacity and keep running for two kilometers, no matter how slow you run, you must finish the two kilometers. Stick to this for a week, and then gradually increase your pace. This way, you can have a very smooth transition.

Adaptation and Relief during Running.

When you first start running, your body may experience various discomforts, such as not being able to run fast, not being able to move, or not being able to continue running. You may also experience heavy breathing, chest pain, stomach pain, muscle soreness, leg cramps, and overall weakness. These are all normal. Take it slowly and progress gradually. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and nothing can be achieved overnight – running is no exception. If you encounter these situations, don’t worry. Your body has an adaptation period and a self-adjustment process. Many discomforts will gradually ease and eventually disappear over time. Only leg cramps require immediate attention. If you experience a leg cramp, it is recommended to flex your toes, clap and knead your thighs with both hands to relieve the tightness of the muscles, allowing them to gradually relax. After a while, they will return to normal. The same goes for the calves.

Slow Jogging for Comfort and Adaptation

This situation is a normal phenomenon that happens to everyone who doesn’t exercise regularly, myself included.

As a long-time couch potato, I would get out of breath within two minutes of running, my legs would feel weak and sore, and my heart rate would skyrocket. That’s why I never considered running as a form of exercise.

Until I discovered super slow running.

The philosophy behind super slow running is to not feel tired or breathless, or have sore and weak legs. By running at a speed similar to walking and maintaining a running posture, it becomes easier for the body to adapt to running, reducing discomfort and even eliminating it completely.

Based on this, you can gradually increase your speed, time, and intensity. Once your body’s adaptability improves, these changes will be much easier to accept.

Therefore, if regular running brings significant discomfort to your body, I recommend giving super slow running a try.

Step by step


  • 含义:按照逐步有条不紊的方式进行某个行动或计划。也可以理解为逐步推进,一步步地实现目标。
  • 例句:他通过循序渐进的学习方法,成功掌握了一门新的技能。
  • 来源:这个成语来源于《论语·阳货》:“循序渐进,以至于堂”(通过逐步的方式,逐渐向前,最终到达宫堂)。
  • 翻译:Step by step.

Step by Step

  • Meaning: To proceed with a certain action or plan in a gradually careful and organized manner. It can also be understood as making progress little by little, step by step, in order to achieve a goal.
  • Example: He successfully mastered a new skill through a step-by-step learning approach.
  • Origin: This idiom is derived from the following passage in The Analects of Confucius - Yang Huo: “Proceed step by step until you reach the hall.” (meaning to gradually progress and eventually arrive at the palace hall).
  • Translation: Step by step.

Slowly Increase Endurance

It is not realistic for beginners to start by running several kilometers. However, we can’t just go to the track and run 800 meters, give up when we can’t run anymore, and go straight home! Therefore, we need to use a combination of running and walking to gradually let our bodies adapt!

If we can’t run anymore after running 800 meters, we can walk fast, then run again after walking for a while, and walk again if we can’t run. Don’t worry about the distance or speed of running, just aim to persist for more than 40 minutes every day. With time, the feeling of fatigue will diminish!

Every day, persist in running. The more you run, the better it gets. I used to be like this. At first, it was very uncomfortable, but later, by persisting in running, I gradually adapted. I could even adapt to running three kilometers. You can drink “Gatorade” to replenish fluids, which is better and tastes good. Beverage shops everywhere sell it.

Slow, Relax.

Slow Down, Relax

Slow down, gradually increase speed.

That’s fine, just run slower and gradually increase your speed.

Don’t stay if the allocation doesn’t fit, leave after a month.

Distribute the 8.9 points and leave if it doesn’t fit, then we’ll talk about it in a month.