Friday, March 22, 2013

My Top 10 Tips to Get Motivated to Run Again

I have been struggling with starting to run again. Ever since I ran my first marathon in January and got sick (I also got sick after past long runs as well), I had to take a hiatus from running. I was becoming frustrated from missing work and missing races I'd had been waiting years to run. 
Honestly, I gave up. I kept telling myself that one day running will magically come back to me. 

Thankfully, I knew that was a big fat lie. 

I am realizing now that I need to get back to it. 
It keeps me fit, alert and most importantly, it keeps me happy. :)

So, I have been researching some ways to get motivated again. 
I found my top ten based on what has helped me in the past and what is helping me today. 

  1. Find a new trail. This one doesn't only apply to trail runners. If you usually run on paved roads and need some motivation, try trail running. For us trail runners, go check out a map of your area and see what you'd like to try out. Or go run that trail that you've been dying to run. There's this one run that I have had my eye on for awhile now. It's a trail that starts in Sabino Canyon and makes its way up to the top of Mt. Bigelow (about a 20 mile run! about 40 if it's round trip). It's on the schedule for TTR (the Tucson Trail Runners) in April so I know I need to train for it.
  2. Read a book about running. My most recent running reads were Ultramarathon Man and Born To Run (absolute favorite). I only had to read a few paragraphs and I was ready to go. Reading about someone else's adventures makes you want to have your own. You can even read blogs! Those are awesome motivators. Find a local runners blog, those always motivate me the most especially when I know the trails and races they run. It helps me make a connection. And it's always cool if you run into them!
  3. Start a blog. That's what got me started in the first place back in 2010. I was browsing some blogs and I came across this woman's blog from California. She wrote about running and I thought that was really strange. But then I started to really get into it. She seemed like she was having a lot of fun! I started my blog the very same day, even before I got a run in. I wrote on Heat Runner for a few years until I realized my interests changed. I have evolved from a 5k road runner who wanted to be fast into a trail runner, wannabe ultramarathon runner who wants to go farther. :) But I still blog.
  4. Get a new playlist. Sometimes, it may be boredom that's stopping you. When I lived elsewhere in Tucson (near the University of Arizona) and I had no easy access to trails or interesting roads, I would refuse to go outside and run when I got home. It was too boring! The only thing that would push me out the door would be my music. I would buy new music every so often and it really pumped up my runs. Lately, I've been running with my phone which has Pandora Radio on it. I love the fact that I don't know what song will come on next. Keeps me guessing. However, it doesn't really work on the trails (no signal) so I have to revert back to my ancient iPod. I have a feeling I will need to update soon.
  5. Sign up for a race. If you have a race looming in your future, you will be more likely to train for it. But make sure it's a big race. I have missed a few 5k's that I've signed up for. They obviously were not important enough to me. Now a marathon...that is something I would NOT miss.
  6. Try a new workout. You can try a fartlek (Swedish for "speed play") workout or a cross fit workout. I get a WOD (Workout of the Day) email in my inbox every day. I may not do all of them, but it's nice to have a back-up plan for those days that you need to shake it up.
  7. Join a running group. Or even a running buddy. I usually like to run alone for various reasons. Sometimes, I need time to think and sometimes, it's because I want to run slow and I don't like slowing others down. But once in awhile, it's nice to run with others. Even if you're not running next to them. TTR is focused on trail running and ultras. I joined the group to meet other runners and motivate myself to run some new trails. It worked! I found some new friends who don't think I'm crazy when I want to run a marathon. I found some new favorite trails that I would never have run had it not been for this group. I have their entire schedule in my planner. There's a run coming up this Sunday in the Rincon Mountains that I'm hoping to attend.
             You can even try to encourage a friend to start running. Hopefully, it's not like pulling teeth, because that's no fun. Start out slow with them and get them interested in some races. That's what Warrior Dash and those color runs are for.
  8. Run with your dog. My German Shepard/Chow-chow mix LOVES to run. My time is always faster when I have to keep up with her. And when we run on trails, I let her off her leash so she can run free. She reminds me that running is so natural and we should do it often.
  9.  Try cross training. Swimming, hiking, biking...snowshoeing. Anything else that's exercise that isn't running. It makes me feel like a well rounded athlete and it makes me feel a little guilty for not running instead. :)
  10. Walk more. You don't need to run the whole time. Don't be pressured to think that you have to. Enjoy the scenery. Stretch out your sore muscles. Take time to refuel. 

I hope these gave you some motivation!
They definitely got me motivated! I think I'll go for a run. :)

1 comment:

  1. Great list! Another one is: go running clothes shopping! :)


I love what you have to say!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...