Sports & Gaming

Your First Steps

Joan Benoit Samuelson

Lesson time 04:14 min

Joan helps you identify your motivation for running and how to harness it. She also provides tips for how and where to purchase the proper pair of shoes and discusses the benefits of logging minutes as opposed to miles as a marker of success.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: How to Get Motivated - Lacing Up - Minutes Not Miles


[CLASSICAL PIANO MUSIC] JOAN BENOIT: To me, the most important thing for beginner runners is to have a purpose as to why they're pursuing running, and everybody has a different reason. If you're running in a big marathon, oftentimes, people will ask the person running next to them, what brought you into the sport? And you'll hear a gazillion different reasons, and that's what's so great about the sport of running. It welcomes everybody for different reasons, different purposes. It could be just to improve one's health, and anybody can find their way into our sport. I was recently asked, am I too old to start running? You're never too old to start running. You're never too old to start learning, and I think that's something that we all need to recognize. Whether you decide to train with a group or train on your own has to be and is a personal choice because only you know how you're going to fare with or without training partners. And I would especially tell beginning runners to find a training partner because sometimes it's really hard to overcome those early obstacles as one starts out in our sport, but if negative thoughts start presenting themselves to a new runner, then it's a lot easier to get rid of those negative thoughts if you know you have somebody out there waiting to run with you. [UPLIFTING MUSIC] If you're new to the sport of running, the shoes are really important, and there are different shoes for different body types, different foot types. You're not going to order online. You're going to go to a running specialty store and have a knowledgeable salesperson fit you to the right shoe for your foot. You have to think about the body mass and the impact with every step or every stride. Bone strength is certainly a concern. Some runners will opt for a shoe that accommodates an orthotic if they have a history of foot problems. I mean, there are all sorts of things to consider, but I think those are some of the basic concerns. And if you have a friend who's a runner and they tell you, oh, I love this shoe. Go get this shoe, no, because what's working for them might not necessarily work for you. So that's the first step in starting to run. [UPLIFTING MUSIC] For new runners, it's all about time, and you can determine how much time you want to be out there. And then you can determine how much of that time you want to be walking and how much of that time you want to be jogging or running, and every runner is going to be different. They need to meet it where they are at that time in their lives. There's no set rule as to how much you have to walk and how much you have to run. You sort of feel that, and for many people, they'll just go out for a 15-minute walk for a week or for days, and then they may say, hey, I'm getting faster and faster with my walking pace. I wonder if I can run a little bit. You can work with ratios in much the same way that an elite athlete will work with intervals. ...

About the Instructor

Winner of the very first women’s Olympic marathon, Joan Benoit Samuelson has spent her life breaking records and paving the way for female runners around the world. Now she’s teaching her personal philosophy and approach to running. Whether you’re an experienced runner or have been thinking about getting started, you’ll learn how to get motivated, set goals, and achieve victory in running and in life.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Joan Benoit Samuelson

Long-distance legend Joan Benoit Samuelson teaches her personal approach to running so you can go further in running and in life.

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