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Starter Guide For Runners

Running Basics

The basics of running it having fun. A great second is to keep putting one foot in front of the other. All else is extra.

So what does this have to do with Eevvoo, running and you as a starter. Well this is at the core of each workout we design. Even if it is a workout for a professional runner, fun is where it all starts. It can be a twist or something completely off topic, you will find out. But even if it is off topic, each workout will alway benefit from it, since working out helps us to stay fit and reach the goals set by you.

The smile we have once we read what today’s workout is going to look like, is the best possible start you can have. From here all else becomes more easy. Getting dressed, getting out the frontdoor, doing your workout and looking forward to the next. And of course continuing to putting one foot in front of the other when it get tough along the way. So from here you are ready to pick a workout or training plan and head for your first run.

Enjoy and have fun!!

Let's run!

Of course there is more to running than just this. So with fun covered, we need a place to run. This can be either indoors or outdoors, it is up to you and all you need. However, technique is of (some) importance and so is listening to your body’s signals. Both help to keep fit, healthy and avoid injuries. Your body is truely remarkable in telling you what it can handle, the only thing you need to do is getting familiar with the language it is speaking.

Once you get more experience all will inprove, but even for the most experienced professional runners listening to their body is key keep going.

In a more specific way these basics help you to start more easily and stay on track once you are out running.

  • Place
    To help you start running and stay away from injuries a flat and even road is best. Paved paths in parks offer this and some extra motivation from other runners. If you prefer to run indoors a treadmill in a well ventilated room is a great option.
  • Running Technique
    Focus on good posture. Run like king or queen showing off to the public. Land softly on your feet, and try to maintain a rhythmic stride.
  • Listen to Your Body
    Be aware of signs of fatigue, pain, or overexertion while out running. Listen to your body and give yourself rest when needed. This is where your own senses (should) kick in. In Trainingpeaks you can see your stats and perhaps even improvement, but you cannot see how your body is feeling. Muscle pains might sometimes accure after running and they are an indication of you pushing your limits. After some well deserved rest, these pains should be gone within a days. Other pains persist, it might sign a sign of injury and you should contact a specialist like a doctor. Read the signs early while listening to your body and the specialist can help to get back on track more easily.

It is however a myth that training and muscle pains go hand in hand. For instance a recovery workout help you recover and should not bring pains to your muscles.

Read on to load your running experience even more or have fun while heading out for (yet another) run!

“Your body is truely remarkable in telling you what it can handle, as long as you get familiar with the language it is talking.”

Gear & Safety

Now it is time to head out. You can go for a run in a pair of jeans and on your gala shoes, but a little investment might be needed to add to the fun. Get a pair of running shoes from your local running specialist that suit your running style. A kit, top & bottom will be sufficient in summer are nice to have too and help move freely and stay cool or warm depending on the season. Last, but certainly not least is your safety while out running.

An extra would be a running device like a watch to help you with getting the workouts done and tracking your progress.

Below are some of the things to be added to the fun we have build into each of the workouts.

  • Footwear
    Invest in proper running shoes that fit your feet and running style. Get advice from a specialized store is a great option to get what you need. Yes, it might be pricy, but it is a blessing for your running.
  • Apparel
    Wear comfortable, breathable clothing suitable for the weather. Know you will produce enough heat to keep warm while running. Layering up in cold weather is a great way to be comfortable. Use a single shirt in summer to keep cool and apply sunscreen if the sun is out.
  • Safety
    This is our first and top priority. Always run against traffic on sidewalks or designated (bike)paths. You will be able to see traffic coming up more easily and won’t be surprised by traffic from behind. Wear reflective or even lit clothing or a gilet in low light or dark conditions.
  • Device
    It is an extra to all above, but it is so convinient. Buy  a running device/watch with gps and a heart rate breast strap. Be sure it is compatible with Trainingpeaks, since Eevvoo’s plans are build in Training peaks. Once you have a compatible watch you can easily synced your watch with their platform and all your workouts will be automatically uploaded to your watch and are ready for you to start with on a push of your start button. Beside this, after finishing your workout will be automatically synced with Trainingpeaks for you to analyse your workout performance or overall training gains.

Have fun running or continue ready to add even more to your running experience.

Understand Running Plans

With you ready to run it is time to add some more to the mix. Nearly every runner sets goals like a race or fun event. With your level (starter for now) goals are a bit limited. But even then, the goal set is your guidance for your training in both a general sense and in the little details. To reach your goal you need a training plan, which is the general sense. Within the plan there is a periodization to balance hard weeks with easy ones. Weeks are made up of  workouts and these for the details of your guidance. Together they help you build your fitness and confidence and might keep you away from possible injuries.

  • Goals
    To help you focus your effort while running, setting yourself a running plan is the best way to go. These goals can vary from doing your first run to becoming world champion at the marathon and all in between. Your running goal however should suits your needs, desires and possibilities within your limits and possibly spare time. A set goal will help you stay on track and keep focus on your overall plan and single running workouts at the same time.
  • Training Plans
    After setting your goal it is time to chose a plan to reach it. Most plans have multiple variations like duration, number of workouts per week or level (probably starter in your case since you are reading this story).
  • Periodization
    Within all plans there is always a periodization. Hard weeks to push your limits are followed by easy weeks to recover and adapt to the hard workouts you have done above what your previously did. Only then can you build towards a race or even maintain your fitness. Each of these cycles is four to six weeks in length, these include three to five weeks of building up your training and a week of easy recovery like workouts.
  • Workouts
    Training plans for runners, the periodization and the weeks within a plan are made up of workouts. Like in the plans periodization each week is a balancing act between hard and easy workouts. Therefore each workout has a goal itself, like building speed or recovery. Sticking to these goals will help you stay fit, gain confidence and stay away from dangers like injuries.

Of course there is much more to tell about plans and workouts and the science behind it, but for this starter guide the basics are enough to go about. Keep this in mind and find yourself the best suitable plan or workout to get started. The ultimate goal is, of course, to start a durable sports adventure.

Read Running Workouts

Now you know all the basics of running, so you can pick a plan and head out with even more confidence. As said for training plans there is more to workouts too. When we dive even deeper into our training plans for a specific goal, we get to workouts and their building blocks. Workouts consist of some general sets. These sets are made up of blocks containing an exersize, duration and intensity.

All these are part of the workouts you find in your training plan. Within Trainingpeaks these are called ‘structured workouts’ and are synchronisable with compatible device so you can use them by pushing your start button.

From the top down structured workouts are build by the following.

  • Sets
    These are the main building elements of workouts. In some workouts you find each, in others just one. This depends on the goal of the workout. Besides the names of the sets might differ from the following set lits: Pre Warm Up, Warm Up, Core, Cool Down, Post Cool Down.
  • Blocks
    Each of these sets is build with blocks of multiple atoms. These atoms are what you are doing while working out. You can find single blocks or even a set containing multiple blocks in a wide variaty. All blocks contain the following atoms:

    • Exersize
      What you do is the exersize. For instance walking, jogging or running.
    • Duration
      This for how long you will do your exersize. This can be in seconds, minutes or hours if you are getting more experienced.
    • Intensity
      Finally the intensity is the effort you have to put in. This is always on a scale.


Your personal intensities

As starter we all know that pushing it to far it bad for your health and increases the risk of injuries. However pacing your effort (or sticking to the set intensity) is key to get the most out of your plan. You might have read about zone, but those have to wait for a bit to avoid injuries. Just because figuring out your threshold in which zones are based is impossible, since running for 20 minutes flat out is way to much to ask. Therefore all our starter plans and workouts are based on feeling (Rate Of Perceived Exertion, RPE in short) as Trainingpeaks calls it.

RPE is based on a scale 1-10. 1 is truely easy and 10 is flat out or the time where you think you will fall apart when continuing, since holding your effort is near to impossible. Within each plan there are specifics types of blocks. Walk is like walking. Jog is not walking nor running, but in between. And running is faster than jogging. Within each there is a split made in RPE to help you find your way.

Once you connected your running watch with Trainingpeaks, these intensities will be described on your running device’s display. You only need to stick to your feeling (and not pace or heart rate!!!) and remember the following:

  • Walk
    • Slow: RPE1
    • Easy: RPE2
    • Moderate: RPE3
  • Jog
    • Slow: RPE1
    • Easy: RPE2
    • Moderate: RPE3
    • Hard: RPE4
  • Run
    • Slow: RPE1
    • Easy: RPE2
    • Moderate: RPE3-4
    • Hard: RPE5-6

A good indicator for RPE is your breathing. At slow you should be able to have a conversation, at moderate this should become difficult. At hard your breathing becomes more and more rapid and talking become really hard. However, this is still with talking limits.

Sticking to this will help you to improve quicker and spread your range in different workouts. Your fitness will truely benefit from this! Over time your speed and pace will increase and once you are able to run 5km, you can find your threshold heart rate too. From here you can calculate your personal running zones and start exploring more elaborate running plans.

Tips for success

In addition to all this points, there are some simple general tips for succes in running. Just do not over do. Think of your nutrition and hydration, especially on hot days and longer runs (over an hour). Keep a balance between working out and taking a break to recover. And if you are not sure what you should do, there is always someone out there who can help you out. Just ask.

  • Consistency
    Aim for regular runs, even if they’re short distances. Don’t worry if you skip a workout (or two), just don’t try to make it up by adding extra minutes or workout days. The plans total will be enough for you to handle.
  • Hydration and Nutrition
    Drink enough water and have a balanced meal before and after your runs. This will help you do better at running and recover more quickly.
  • Rest and Recovery
    Allow your body time to recover. Rest days are as important as training days. Don’t overdo, your plan is most certainly already an overload for your.
  • Seek Advice
    Don’t hesitate to ask us questions. Explore Eevvoo’s stories with tips & tricks or adventures of other runners.

The Next Step

After finishing your starter plan the world of running is at your feet. You are now able to run for a longer period and could take on a test plan to set your threshold and start training with zones. Or just take on a new starter plan to gain more confidence before taking the next step. It is up to you.

This might be a lot to get your head around. It is however the basics of running and most is easy to think of by yourself. So this is just a wrap up of the most important things which can help you get fun, speed, endurance and more out of each run. And over a longer period of time.

Do forget all you just read, over time the plans will exactly tell you what is up for the next couple of days/weeks/months. And each workout structure and its setup will guide you through each minute of your run. No worries, many have run this path before you (so did I) and many will follow.

Smile, head out. You are a runner!

Let’s go together!
Let’s go together!