Running is an easy activity to do and enjoy. You can run almost anywhere. Running is good for your whole body and mind. It's a great time to just think or even talk with a friend, coach or parent. You can run short distances, then middle distances, and build up to long distances.
- It's relaxing.
- You can run almost anywhere.
- It's a great way to get exercise for your whole body and stay fit and in shape.
- It's easy to get started.
- You don’t need much equipment.
- It’s fun!
- Ask a parent or friend it they’ll run with you for safety.
- Start by running short distances, about one block. Add more blocks each day or week, depending on how often you run, and keep building up.
- Once you're running a distance you're comfortable with or that takes about 20-30 minutes to jog, try to run at least a few times a week.
- You don’t have to add more distance to get the benefits of exercise; you’ll stay fit even if you aren’t running farther each time your run.
It's important to find a way to stay motivated to keep running. Enter a school team, or enter a few races for kids or family races and run with your friends and parents. Sometimes all you need is a running buddy and a scheduled time to run to keep motivated.
How to Get or Stay Motivated
- Set a regular time to run with a friend, sibling or parent.
- Enter races or join a team.
- Set a schedule for when you want run and set a goal for how long you want to run.
- Stick to your schedule! If you miss a day, that’s okay, but try to run the next day.
- Even missing a few runs is fine, just be sure to get back to your schedule.
- Don’t run alone.
- Wear reflectors at night.
- Wear shoes that fit right and that are made for running. Shoes for other sports can hurt your feet if you run in them a lot.
- Wear sunscreen so you don’t get sunburned.
- Stretch before and after you run.
It’s also important to have fun while you run! Running can be fun if you feel good, are not pushing it too much and enjoy what you are doing.
How to Have Fun
- Run with someone else.
- Don’t drink or eat too close to when you run or you’ll get cramps (unless you’re having water — but don’t overdo it!)
- In the winter, run on a treadmill.
- In the summer, run in mornings or evenings so it’s not too hot.
- You can also try out races or triathlons (swim, bike, run) for fun.
Exercising too much is unhealthy and can wear you out and injure you, so run in a way that feels comfortable. If you’re training for an event, a coach can help you build up to the distance and teach you how to pace yourself for that race. Running is a great way to have fun and stay in shape, but it is important to remember to run safely and enjoy it.
Youth reviewer: Sarahjeet Dosanjh
Reviewed by: Sharanjit Dosanjn, RN
Last reviewed: September 2019