getting started

Ok, so you are ready to start running!  Congrats on making on being strong enough to make this decision!  Here are a few tips to help you get started:

  1. Get Proper Footwear– It’s time to head to your local run specialty store and get fitted for a new shoe!  Just go to your local running store and tell the employees that you want to start running.  They will watch you walk and run a bit and be able to fit you for a shoe that is right for your foot strike.  Having a foot that is right for you is important in injury prevention.  Don’t be nervous, this is what they do!
  2. Find a Running Buddy– Do you have a friend that has expressed interest in starting running?  Do you know of a group that meet to run?  Having a running buddy is important for keeping yourself motivated and on track.  You can help each other through the tough times and share each other’s joys.  Don’t know any runners or any groups?  Ask at your local running store, they’ll have contact information for all running groups and clubs in your area.
  3. Be Patient– Take your time getting into running.  You are starting something you can do forever, so there is no need to rush right in.  Start as slow as you want.  Don’t be afraid to take walk breaks or days off.  Be patient with your progress.
  4. Celebrate Your Progress– I just told you to be patient, but be sure to give yourself a pat on the back for your achievements along the way.  The first time you complete a mlle run, the first time you do 30 minutes without stopping, these deserve a little celebration.  Each milestone should be acknowledged.  You are making huge profess in your life, give yourself credit for that.
  5. Set a Goal–  Everyone’s goals vary but make sure you set one for yourself.  It might be to run a mile or to run a local 5k.  Whatever it is, it is your goal.  It will help to keep you motivated and to press on during those rough days.  Each time you accomplish your goal celebrate your achievement and then set a new one.  You will surprise yourself and how capable you really are.
  6. Enjoy the Journey–  You are starting the most amazing journey.  Enjoy it!  Watch as your fitness, strength, and self-confidence grow.  You are joining an amazing club and we are so excited to have you.  Welcome and get ready for great experiences!

You can always check out my book: Kara Goucher’s Running for Women.  It’s filled with great advice and tips to help you along the way!

Training Plans

Whether you are a beginner or already a runner looking to elevate your game, training plans can help you get there.  When looking for training plans, be sure to look for something that is right for you.

I loved working on these training plans with the guys from Run the Edge because I believe that whether you are a beginner or already an experienced runner looking to elevate your game, training plans can help you get there.  When selecting a plan, be sure to look for something that is right for you.  Don’t try to do my training when your goal is to run your first 5k.  There are a lot of plans out there, and many of them are great, but I recommend the Level-Up Training Plans from Run the Edge. They created the completely unique “Level-Up Training System” that allows you to advance through the program at your own pace. Not only did  I help write these plans and include many of my favorite workouts, but they have a variety of levels from beginner to advanced. The Running Start program will take you from your first step to finishing your first 5k while having fun every step of the way. Whether you’re just beginning or a seasoned veteran, these training plans will get you to the finish line and setting PR’s (Personal Records) in every distance from 5k to the Marathon!


I get a lot of questions about nutrition and fueling my body properly for my running.  I’d like to start off by saying that I am not a profession dietitian or nutritionist!  But, I have had a lot of experience over the years fueling myself for the miles I put in.

My advice here is pretty basic.  We all know what is good for you and what isn’t.  There is nothing in my diet that is off limits, I don’t shun wine, chocolate, or the occasional french fry.  But, I fuel myself on much healthier things and so my overall diet is pretty healthy.  I focus on making sure I am getting plenty of vegetables, fruit, complex carbs, and lean proteins.  If I have had toast with peanut butter for breakfast, a recovery shake after a workout, a big salad with lots of toppings for lunch, yogurt and trail mix for a snack, and a stir fry filled with veggies for dinner, than I don’t feel guilty if I have a bowl of ice cream or a chocolate bar before bed.  I do have the occasional day where I don’t eat the healthiest, but I don’t let myself feel guilty.  No one is perfect all of the time.  As you train you learn foods that make you feel better and foods that don’t.  Don’t think you must have a strict diet to be a runner, focus on the good stuff and you’ll be just fine.