Sun Run: Words from your coach and resident Olympian to get started

I will have the privilege of guiding you over the next 13 weeks to make sure you safely and comfortably complete the Vancouver Sun Run in a way that’s right for you.

Written by: Lynn Kanuka

Helloooo, and welcome to our 24th year of SportMed InTraining! I will have the privilege of guiding you over the next 13 weeks to make sure you safely and comfortably complete the Vancouver Sun Run in a way that’s right for you. You will be part of an incredible journey with thousands of people around the province, and there is huge power in that vision of health, fun and fitness.

I was thinking about you on my own quiet jog along the river this morning. It was beautiful as the fog was lifting and there were several blue herons taking off from the banks, and as my breath quickened I felt excited to once again share my advice and stories to help you along the way. Just stick to the right program for yourself and make sure you have a good pair of supportive shoes. I’ll share my advice each week and I know you can do it! Sun Run 2019 here we come!

Important tips to help you make a good start:

Be honest about your current fitness level. Choose the right program for yourself.

Walk 10K

Whether you are just starting out or already an avid walker, the Walk 10K program will include a comfortable progression of distances and change-of-pace sessions to gradually progress from 45 minutes of walking to completing a 10K.

Learn To Run 10K

Perhaps you’d like to learn to run, but either haven’t had success in the past, or just aren’t sure how to begin. If you haven’t been running for three months or longer, this is the program to start with. Using a combination of walking and running, we will slowly and comfortably progress to being able to safely walk/run a 10K.

Run 10K Stronger

Perhaps you’d like to either try to run faster for yourself or even just feel more comfortable when you run. Your pace is personal, and this program will introduce change-of-pace running with progressions in distance and intensity to help you complete your 10K more comfortably than you ever have before. For this program you should already be running easily three times per week for 30 minutes at a time. If that’s not you, then choose the Learn To Run 10K Program.

Be patient. Most people tend to do too much, too fast, too soon. Remember, you should always finish feeling like you could have done more.

Stick to the schedule. No more and no less. It is a successful program.

Make sure you have good supportive shoes when you start the program. It will help your success and prevent injury.

Stay at a nice easy talking pace most of the time. If you are unable to string a few sentences together in conversation, then you are going too fast for yourself. Slow down!

It’s your arm action that sets the pace and maintains your rhythm. Pump those arms and the legs will follow.

Keep a logbook and record your successes. It will keep you motivated.

Do a dynamic warm-up to get the circulation going.

Do a stretch afterwards in your cool-down. It will help prevent injury.

Invite a friend or canine creature to follow the program with you. It will be fun to share in the experience and help keep you motivated.

Remind yourself why you walk or run:

• It is fun and enjoyable.

• It is excellent for heart health.

• It builds healthy bones.

• It improves mood and reduces stress.

• It increases flexibility.

• It is an effective way to control weight.

• It is a good form of transportation.

• It is good for the environment.

• You can do it anywhere anytime.

• All you need is a tried-and-true training program, good coaching advice and proper running or walking shoes.

You’re on your way with Week 1!

Lynn Kanuka, SportMedBC’s resident Olympian and SportMed’s RunWalk coach.

This article originally appeared in the Vancouver Sun on January 16, 2019. Follow this link to view the original article. 

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