Time to lace up those shoes!

Indy's parks and trails, including the Monon is already showing signs of life as spring returns. How long has it been since you've been out there?

One sure way to get ready to run is to check out the Indy Runners on Facebook.

Here are some tips to get back into the swing of thing, thanks to our friends at Carmel Clay Parks.

Make it Fun!

  • Running can be a very social activity. Find a friend to run with or join a club such as the Carmel Runners Club (http://www.carmelrunners.com). This will help you get or stay motivated and sharing your trials and tribulations will help you enjoy the journey even more!


Remember shoes are the only point of contact between you and pavement.  Shoes that are properly fit to your needs will aid in decreasing wear and tear on your body, and add more miles to your step in your long runs.  Suggest you visit a local running store with experienced staff when finding a shoe.


Focus on comfort, versatility and visibility. The general rule of thumb is to dress as though it is twenty degrees warmer than it actually is. You’ll start the run uncomfortably cool, but don’t worry, you’ll heat up quickly. As we move into spring, find clothing that will be easy to remove or adjust with the temperature fluctuations.

Just as mom always said, be sure to layer. Start with a moisture-wicking base layer. This will be the thinnest, closest-fitting fabric. The next layer is all about insulation. Fleece makes a great insulator but be sure to add another wind-resistant layer on top of this with a windbreaker or outer shell.

If you haven’t been active outdoors in a while, drop into one of our local running stores to discuss the options. The technological advances in clothing can make all the difference in th world.


Start warm – warm up indoors. Jump rope, go up and down the stairs, do jumping jacks. Whatever it takes to get the blood pumping. This will also help when you first step outside as you begin your run.

Be visible – be sure to wear reflective clothing and lighting at all times. Even though you are running during the daytime, the winter snow can make visibility difficult for drivers. Dawn and dusk, opportune exercise times for most of us, can make it even more dangerous.

Be prepared – most public water stops are not working until the temps warm up. Be sure to bring something to drink with you or take advantage of drink stations put out on Saturday mornings by the Carmel Runners Club.  Ensure that you are well hydrated before, during, and after runs.  Especially on long runs drink water before you think you "need" it.

General Info

Start out slowly in terms of pace. Injuries often happen because people start off their workout at their target pace. For example, if your goal is to maintain a 9 minute per mile pace on your run, start out the first mile at 9:15, 9:30 or 9:45. This will allow your body time to warm up effectively. As the miles pass, continue to increase your pace until you are running at your goal pace.

Also, start out slowly in terms of distance. Too many people starting off with running feel they need to run a long distance the first time out. This often leads to an overly sore body and missed future workouts. New to running? Try the St. Vincent’s Minutes to Miles program or the Couch to 5K program. Another thing to consider is to not increase your mileage too much or too quickly. General rule of thumb is that your mileage should not increase by more than 10% each week.