‘ I’M TOO EM­BAR­RASSED’

Runner's World (UK) - - New Runners -

Feel­ing self-con­scious about ex­er­cis­ing out­doors is un­der­stand­able, par­tic­u­larly if you’re not en­tirely com­fort­able with your body, but ask your­self this ques­tion: do you look at oth­ers when they are run­ning? Prob­a­bly not. You’ll find peo­ple are gen­er­ally far too busy with their own con­cerns to no­tice you as you run by, and they some­times may turn out to be more sup­port­ive than you would ex­pect. Re­mem­ber, every­one had to start run­ning some­time.

If it helps, try a pre­emp­tive strike. Con­fronting em­bar­rass­ment head-on worked for RW reader Amanda Phillips. She had a T-shirt printed that said ‘Fat Bird Run­ning’ on the back and she told us (in Au­gust last year) that the re­sponses she got were unan­i­mously sup­port­ive.

If you’re not ready to be so di­rect, there are op­tions: other read­ers have told us that when they first started run­ning, they’d go early in the morn­ing, or af­ter dark. Later, they felt con­fi­dent enough to go out at other times. Al­ter­na­tively, find­ing a friend or group to join you on this pro­gramme is a great way of over­com­ing em­bar­rass­ment, and can also help every­one stick with it and make the whole ex­pe­ri­ence more fun.

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