Running is one of the most effective ways to get fit and stay fit. Plus, like all exercise, it improves your mood and toughens you mentally. However, there are rules to follow. Here are the top five do's and don't of running:

 1) Wear the right clothes

Running makes you sweat. Don't wear just any outfit like jeans to start jogging. Instead chose clothes that are specially designed to allow the heat to escape and made of synthetic materials that wick sweat away from the body.

 2) Wear proper shoes

Don't wear ill-fitting shoes or footwear that are designed for casual wear for running as this can impact your performance and even lead to knee and feet injuries. Instead,  opt for shoes designed for running. Select a pair in the right size. Make sure it gives your toes enough wiggle room, proper support to the midfoot and no slippage at the heel. Also, consider wearing cushioned shoe inserts to reduce shock or to correct imbalances of the feet. Finally, get a new pair of running shoes after you've logged in 500 km on your current pair.

3) Warm up

Don't start jogging or running right off the bat as this will leave you with aches all over your body. Instead, do warm-up exercises and stretches before you begin. Run the first kilometer at a leisurely pace and build up from there.

 4) Eat and hydrate

Don't start running after a heavy or even moderate meal as this will slow you down. Instead, do have a high carb snack like a small bowl of oatmeal to power your runs. Prevent dehydration by sipping on cool water or sports drinks periodically while running. However, don't overhydrate and drink only when you're thirsty.

 5) Running pace

Don't run hard since running hard isn't the same as running smart. Instead, do choose a relaxed pace and stick with it. As your body adapts, you'll be able to run faster within the same time frame. This ultimately is how you know your performance has improved.

 Hope you find these tips helpful. Now find the right pair of running shoes and hit the trails!