Just when you think you're tough enough

Cross Train

From Couch Potato to Runner Bean


I used to tell everybody, ‘Everyone can run’ and I was almost always met with the ‘there is something seriously wrong with you’ look. I often wondered why people liked to doubt themselves. I found it amusing that it was other people who believed in them yet they deliberately chose not to believe in themselves.

Until one fine day, when I was told, “Everybody can do Ironman!”
My immediate response was a resounding never.



But now, with a little more thought put into it, it really is about putting in the effort and dedication to come up with a plan, execute it, stick with it and achieve it.

Here are a few tips to get yourself a promotion, from the ranking of couch potato to the runner bean rank.

#1 Commit yourself to your first 10km run

2Commitment is always the first step. For some of the more sloth-like people (like myself), I require that extra push. I would never study Geography if I did not have an upcoming exam. Similarly, I would only train for a marathon if I had one to train for. 10km might sound like a big number for a beginner, but with the right training, dedication and effort, you’d be able to finish the 10km route in less than 1.5 hours. If you think about it, it is less time than you spend watching a movie in the cinema.


#2 Get Proper Running Shoes

Personally I think of this as very significant. We all have different feet, and no two feet are the same. Some people are flat footed, some people have neutral arches and some people are naturally high arched. People with different arch heights are prone to different injuries, hence, shoe manufacturers have developed different shoes to cater to different arch-heights respectively. The first step is to find out which category you fall under. You can just head to any Shoe Shop (I got mine tested at Adidas) to find out. It is a very simple process whereby you stand on a heat sensitive mat. After some time, the shape of your feet will be mapped out and you would be able to tell whether you are flat-footed or otherwise. Get shoes specific to your arch to prevent injuries.

#3 Get a running plan

3I’d like to think myself of more of a sheep than a lion. I prefer to just follow. There really is nothing wrong with that. You don’t have to be a pioneer of your own running plan to be able to run your first 10km. There are so many apps, plans and even podcasts out there. For example, there is the couch to 5k plan or the NHS choices podcats.The answer is GOOGLE! Pick one you feel comfortable with, follow it to the tee, and it will be guaranteed you would be more than ready for your 10km run.


#4 Remember that we will have our bad days

Always remember that we will have our bad days. The weather might be terrible, you might just not feel up for a run, the dog might have eaten your sneakers, but do not let the one days mistakes bring you down.

Get up the next day and train again. Don’t dwell on the past but look ahead. Some people give up entirely for the reason that they missed one day. Remember, we are allowed to have bad days.

#5 Don’t Retire So Soon

Don’t retire your shoes right after your first 10km run. Sign up for a 12km run or a half marathon next. Make progressive increases to your mileage.

That’s it folks. Now, time to make those running dreams reality.

© Kmitu | Dreamstime Stock Photos
© Kmitu | Dreamstime Stock Photos

Written by Melissa Lim