Beginners Guide to Running in Hong Kong

So, you've been thinking about running? Not sure if it's for you? Don't think you have the time? Don't know the benefits? Well read on, as there are many!

14 Sep 2015 — By Elle Kealy / Fitness

Lace Up and Get Fit

As the weather in Hong Kong cools down a bit over the next few months why not lace up your shoes and learn how to run, get outside and go for it!

Running takes endurance, energy, and discipline, all great skills to have up your sleeve, and eating healthily is always the best way to get the most out of your run. So where do you start?

Whether you’re just beginning, and are only looking to go jogging in the mornings, or you’re looking for something more intense, like training for that 5k, 10k, or if you’re feeling ambitious, the 15k; there is always a jogging plan that will fit your lifestyle.

Even if all you can do is go jogging for 20 minutes, every morning or evening, doing that instead of watching T.V. will boost your health and you will excel!

With so many great cardio options in town why run?

Running is a great way to clear your head, help you think, become more social and improve your concentration. The benefits to running are:

  • Improved circulation
  • It’s an easy and modifiable exercise, that most people can do
  • It strengthens your whole body
  • It helps with incorrect posture
  • It assists in concentration and anxiety issues
  • You can do it with friends, and create a social gatherings out of your workout
  • You can go jogging with the kids or with your significant other
  • You can go running with your pet!
  • Your knees will thank you! Although there is plenty of talk about how running may do more harm than good when it comes to your joints; being overweight will cause just as many issues that lead to osteoarthritis.
  • Running a marathon boosts self-confidence
  • Jogging every morning creates routine and gets you the daily exercise one needs!
  • It’s FREE! And you get to see our beautiful city and trails
  • It relieves stress

Where Do I Start?

The best way to start running is to actually start! Get out there and start slow by walking. As you walk, speed up your pace until you are jogging. Don’t rush yourself and be patient. Don’t try and do too much at once, always stay hydrated. Bring a bottle of water with you, always. Don’t be mad at yourself if you can’t run for too long right now, it all comes with time.

Try walking fast for one minute, and then jogging for another minute. If you can’t make it to a minute, it’s ok.  As you improve you can cut your walking time down and add more jogging time.  Keep pushing yourself to go an extra few second each time you alternate, and eventually you will build up your stamina and be able to go for longer. Set a new ‘time goal’ for yourself each time. Then try and beat that goal the next time you alternate. This will train your body to run for longer.

Where to Buy Running Shoes in HK

Make sure you’ve got the right shoes to run in. Running in the wrong type of shoe could do more damage to your body, than good. It’s best to run using shoes that are made for the type of foot you have. There are three types of feet:

  • Pronated Feet (Flattened arches)
  • Supinated Feet (High arches)
  • Neutral Feet (Equal balance of arches)

If you have pronated feet, don’t use shoes with lots of cushion. This will cause you to be more unstable while running, which could result in injury, bummer. So buy shoes that have firm mid-soles.

If you have supinated feet, buy cushion shoes. Make sure they do not stop you from moving around easily.

If you have neutral feet, you can buy shoes with either lots of cushion or firm mid-soles, just make sure they fit you properly, and that they are always laced up tight before you go jogging. Safety first!

My pick of places to get great shoes:  Escapade, Champion Runner, New Balance and 10K Running Pro  – all the staff in these places will help you get the right fit.

I Want to Run, But I’m Embarrassed

This is not an uncommon reason for why people do not want to go running. First of all you should never be embarrassed for wanting to go running. You are choosing to put your health first and that is nothing to be embarrassed about! Also, no-one is looking at you, really, they’re all too busy hanging off their selfie sticks.

There are also tons of places you can get away from the crowds in HK that give you more privacy. I used to run the family walk at Park View early in the morning as a great short beginners track just because there’s never anyone there.

Running Tips & Techniques

  • Once you plan to go running, stick to your routine. Persistence and consistency is key!
  • Don’t always go jogging on the same route so you don’t get bored. Your muscles get used to different types of terrain and elevation, so it’s good to change it up frequently and keep your muscles guessing what’s next!
  • Buy the right shoes for the type of feet you have
  • Eat healthily, in order to give your body the energy you need
  • Always stay hydrated when you go running, and bring a bottle of water with you
  • Try not to land on your heel, aim for mid-foot
  • Lift up those feet!
  • Don’t stiffen your ankles
  • Don’t take big leaps, this is less hard on the knees
  • Lean forward from your ankles, not your waist
  • Pull your belly button in towards your spine. This will strengthen your core muscles while you run.
  • Pull your body up
  • Relax your shoulders
  • Keep your elbows bent at 90 degrees, and don’t waste too much energy swinging your arms wildly
  • Look where you are going
  • Breath in and out through the nose. This helps you control your breathing, so you are not taking in and/or letting out too much oxygen at once.
  • If you’re going remote, take a buddy or at the very least tell someone where you’re going and when you’ll be back.

Jogging vs. Running?

What are the differences between running and jogging? Does one have more benefits over the other? It really depends on the person. Everyone is different.

Jogging can be done by most people, while running takes a bit more skill and effort – but burns more calories. I’ll be honest, I’m a jogger, can’t run for long distances for love nor money. Your physiology is going to determine if you’re naturally great at running, but at the end of the day, who cares? Just get out there and start moving.

The Time to Start is Now!

There is no time like the present.  Whether you do it three times a week, or everyday, you’re still doing more for yourself  than someone who isn’t doing anything at all. Know your limits. The more you go running the more you’ll learn about your limits. Don’t push yourself beyond those limits, be patient with yourself.

So if you want to beat stress and get fit the time to go running is now! Lace up!


Elle Kealy is an international business coach for fitness health and wellness professionals looking to launch their businesses with a bang and women’s fitness expert, personal trainer and nutrition coach helping women around the world eat better and feel fantastic in just 90 days or less. For more information on working with Elle visit 

www.ellekealy.com


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