New runners: Avoid these mistakes

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Running is a great workout that improves your cardiovascular system, builds muscles and even boosts your mood. But just like any exercise, there are certain running blunders you’ll want to be careful to avoid. Steer clear of these common running mistakes to keep your body healthy and your workouts effective:

1. Running on concrete

Concrete is the most unforgiving surface on your joints. Running on sidewalks every day can really do a number on your ankles, knees and hips. Instead, opt for a home treadmill, or even blacktop which absorbs about 20 percent more shock than concrete. If your muscles and joints are still store after that, consider personal massage to rejuvenate your muscles and decrease discomfort.

2. Wearing old shoes

A pair of running shoes can typically last about 400 miles. After that, it’s time to replace them. In order to ensure that you’re buying the right shoes, visit your local running store to be sized for your sneakers. The employees will be able to point you in the direction of what shoe works best for your workouts.

3. Doing more than your body can handle

If you’re new to running, it’s not good for your body to immediately start with a high-intensity long distance run. Instead, start slow with a five-minute warmup of walking or jogging, then slowly get into your running routine. Each week, try increasing your mileage or your speed by no more than 10 percent to gradually see improvement.

4. Not letting your body rest

You may think that participating in intense running workouts each day will help you reach your fitness goals faster, but not giving your body a break can cause injury. Be sure to take two to three days off per week to allow your muscles to recover. Overusing your joints and muscles will wear them out quickly.

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