Work it out in the new year, start a running plan

Photo by Katie Harris |

Is your New Year’s resolution connected to health? Are you looking to lose weight or re-dedicate yourself to a fitness routine? It’s a popular option.

All you have to do is click on the television and you’ll be bombarded with commercials for fitness equipment, gym memberships, diet pills and more. Remember the ThighMaster? Suzanne Sommers made a killing on that little device, thanks to our insecurities.

But all it really takes it a little commitment to something you can actually enjoy. If a workout feels too much like work, chances are you won’t keep it up. Winter time can add an extra challenge. When snow is falling in winds are whipping around, the last thing I want to do is hit the trail. But the treadmill, I can do that.

HourDetroit magazine thinks you can, too. In this month’s issue, they challenge us to Make a Run for It. Writer Aleene Jinn George chatted with Lisa Senakiewich, assistant coach of men’s and women’s cross country and track at Michigan State University and they really nailed down some great advice for novice runners.

Running is a great sport to try because it doesn’t require much. Get a good pair of shoes and go. You don’t need a lot of gadgets. But the important thing is to get on the road and go.

Senakiewich said:

In the beginning, it’s really a trial-and-error process. How someone responds and feels to their current amount of running will determine where he or she can go next. It’s a good idea to start off with runs that are based on minutes versus mileage. It’s easier to manage a plan of running for 10 to 15 minutes every day or every other day than running 1.5 to 2 miles every other day, for example. It’s also more fulfilling to get through a goal time for the day rather than feeling defeated by running a certain pace. Also, from a training standpoint, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to add up a 10-to-15 mile week. It’s a better idea to wait to base training on mileage once the individual can get through 20-or-30 minute runs without stopping. However, if you feel that it would be more beneficial for you to start off with exact miles, then by all means go for it. It’s a part of finding out what you like best and feel the most comfortable with.

Running is beneficial in that it can be a stress reliever as well as a heart-healthy exercise. Build up gradually and you might find it’s part of your day you look forward to – rather than something you dread.

Check out the full story, with tips from everyone from Biggest Loser winner and Sterling Heights resident Helen Phillips to Keith Hanson, owner of Hanson’s Running Shops located in Grosse Pointe Woods, Royal Oak, Utica and Lake Orion.

Do you run? What do you get out of it and how do you keep it going through all seasons, all weather?

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