Running. You've thought about starting, but just haven't quite managed to get over that first hurdle of putting on the tights and setting a trainer-clad foot outside. It's about time that changed.
There's no need to sign up to a costly gym
, when you can train in the park for free with just you, a good sports bra and a pace-pushing playlist as props. If you're thinking of taking up running, we've got five things to help kick start your new exercise regime...
1. An app.
Let's face it, motivating yourself to actually get out there and start running is nigh on impossible. Squeezing in a 5k run in between working late and catching up with pals over some dough balls at Pizza Express? It's not gonna happen without someone - or something - prompting you. Enter a good running app. They remind you to exercise, keep track of your progress and instruct you mid run to push yourself. Our favourite? Zombies, Run!
This app cleverly combines real life exercise with a zombie-based game that has you running missions while escaping from the undead. While it may sound ridiculous it really makes your run more enjoyable and the sound of zombies on your tail is surprisingly motivating.
2. A sports bra.
Even if you haven't got the biggest boobs in the world a well fitted sports bra will literally change everything. When you're attempting to beat your personal best, bouncing breasts are the last thing you want to worry about. How do you know if you need a new sports bra? Ask yourself this - am I female? If the answer's yes, you need a sports bra. For pretty yet practical sports undies, we recommend LuLu Lemon
3. The right trainers.
Fancy a jog and reckon your old knackered tennis shoes will do the job? Think again. We tried this once and came out the other end with a very sorry looking toenail and a sore ankle.
Get yourself down the shops and actually speak to someone who knows what they're talking about when it comes to running shoes. However, a good starting point for any budding Paula Radcliffe are these Nike Lunarglide +5 trainers which come complete with plenty of cushioning and support for your ankles.
4. Proper headphones.
Yup, we know the headphones that came free with your iPhone are "actually pretty good" but they're not the best at actually staying in your ears when your running. Invest in some real running headphones and you won't regret it.
Powerbeats from Beats By Dre are our fave, and not just because they come in loads of different colours. The sports-focused headphones feature a sweat-resistant design, a super secure fit and throttling bass response. No matter how high you crank the volume passersby won't be able to hear a thing... So your penchant for Abba can stay our little secret.
5. A killer playlist. Studies have shown
the tempo of your music has an impact on your athletic performance. According to Spotify - Kesha's 'Timber' AKA the most annoying song to hit the chart since 'The Crazy Frog' - is made up of the perfect beats per minute to keep you running at a speedy pace. But who really wants to listen to Kesha? No one, that's who.
From Beyonce to Daft Punk, A$AP Rocky to Jimmy Eat World, we've thrown together our favourite songs to run to so you don't have to...
MORE! How to train for your first 10k...