Are you a ‘fair weather’ runner? Do you start running then let it fall by the way side in favour of something else?
Here’s how to stick with your running routine all year long. 🙂
It happens to even the most well intentioned runners. The babysitter bails, so you can’t get out. Work obligations derail a three miler, rainy pavements ruin another. Then before you know it, your regular running routine is a distant memory.
Here’s how to safely get back to where you left off:
There’s nothing like a goal to stoke your motivation. It doesn’t have to be lofty, but it should take some work so attaining it feels sweeter. Simply aiming to run two or three times a week will get you body and mind in sync with running again. Then perhaps you could enter an event to aim for: 5k or 10k in the distant future to give you reason to get out and run and train for it.
Once or twice a week, add three to five minutes to your workout. Continue adding time until you reach 30 minutes of run / walking. At that point, you can either increase your run / walk ratio or focus on increasing the duration of your run. Why not run with a friend to keep your motivation levels higher than they might be if you ran on your own?
If you find that you are finding running / walking hard and you’re hating it, lengthen your walk segments. For example if you had been using a run / walk ratio of 5-8 minutes of running to 1 minute of walking, drop the ratio back down to a 1:1 ratio. Or remember this:
Run til you feel you can’t keep running, walk until you feel guilty.
Run walk every other day and make sure you have rest days between your runs. Doing too much after a break puts you at risk of injury as your muscles need time to adapt to the running motion. Plus, jumping up to do too much exercise all in one go can tire you out, making it harder to get on track.
You don’t need to run fast!
You may feel pressure from others to run fast but you don’t need to. Everyone has their own pace and when you’re starting out its important that you stuck to that pace.
And anyway, running slower strengthens your cardiovascular system, improves the ability of your heart to pump blood and oxygen to your muscles, and builds stronger bones. All these adaptations happen without making your heart rate or your eyeballs bulge.
Another quote to remember is:
Motivation gets you started, habit keeps you going.