Best Tips for Beginners

The following tips for beginners are provided by runners right here in Tennessee! 

If you are new to running and are looking for some of the best advice, look no further than what the most experienced runners in Nashville have to say! 


On Intensity and Pace Don't get caught up with increasing mileage. Mix running with activities that are less weight bearing on the legs. Cycling, swimming, and even cross country as well as trail running are excellent activities for building endurance. Don't worry about pace when you run on the trails or cross country courses!- Nadine R 

Take it slow and at your own pace. It takes time to build up some speed and distance. Focus on yourself and don't worry about what others are doing. Have patience and have fun!!- Keith K

Take it easy! I talk to a lot of new runners who try to do too much too soon and who try to run too fast without building endurance first. When you're starting out, take it easy. Don't be worried about your pace while you build your endurance.- Tammy S 

Don't worry how fast you're going or how long it takes. It's ok to stop and walk. Really.- David W

On Motivation and gear Join a run group! The accountability of meeting friends will keep you on track, and don't be worried about your pace. Our local groups have something for everyone! Take the time to get properly fitted for shoes and sports bras!!- Jennifer C

Find a running partner or a running group! A running partner or group keeps you accountable! Get your runs down on a calendar each month and you will be more successful at following through and being there! It's also just more fun to run with others!- Deena P 

Every run/day is different. Some days you'll go out and kill it. Other days, it'll kill you. Don't give up! Learn to be okay with junk miles too.- Kristen N 

On Form and Warm Weather Drop your arms (relax). Keep your eyes on the shoes of the person in front of you and you will pass them! If you are breathing too fast, slow it down by blowing out. Take a big breath and blow it out this will help! When you are going uphill, lift your knees,come off your toes like you are running up stairs and use those arms to pump you up the hill. Don't just let the sweat sit there, use it to cool yourself off....take it from the back of your neck and rub it up and down your arms, rub it into your face, use the sweat on your belly and armpits too--it's hot out there.- Robin M 

On Footwear I don't know how many times in a week or even a day that I tell someone "Get fit for shoes from Fleet Feet (or another local running shoe store if you don't have FF in your area)." This is literally my default answer to everyone venturing into walking or running. Even this past weekend at my cousin's military promotion in Ohio, I was visiting with a military girl who is currently on "profile" meaning she's injured & cannot run or she will lose her job. She's been x-ray'd, MRI'd, and has been to two local running shoe one can find the problem she's having with her arch. I suggested she find the nearest Fleet Feet in her area for yet another opinion. There is one about 30 min from her...she's heading there this weekend. Save the feet, save a runner... Valerie F

On Training Plans Find a training plan you can make time for, and stick to it! Don't feel frustrated that you aren't running full miles on the first day (or month!), and don't try to add extra - even if it feels "easy." Trust your training plan - it will help you avoid injury and help you enjoy those miles even more down the road!- Terrie K 

Traveling doesn't have to mean 'no running'.  In advance of your travels, reach out to a local running store to ask about planned group runs, pedestrian friendly areas of the city, trails, tracks, and regular routes that will help you get the distance/workout you need.  Use Social Media to start the conversation and when you get to the city, stop by, say hello and thanks!- Stephen H 

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