Getting back into running after any sort of hiatus can be a bit daunting. I’ve had to start and restart a few times this year due to sickness, injury, procrastination. And if you’re a bit impatient as I am it’s easy to get frustrated with your ability, mileage, speed.
I’ve been thinking a lot about motivators lately. There are a lot of methods out there and I’m sure that those for professional runners are different than the recreational, but either way I love having various tools in my tool belt to draw upon as needed.
I change it up on every run. Often I need really energetic, fun dance or hip hop with a good beat to keep moving and take my mind off any discomfort. But sometimes it’s more about complementing the landscape and I’ll listen to classical – kind of like a movie soundtrack. Other times it’s about total inspiration and I bring out the Eye of the Tiger and other 1980s rock ballads. One time I even listened to a book on tape! The choices of what to pipe through your earbuds is endless. You just want to make sure you can still hear any approaching cars or other potential safety hazards.
Sign Up for a Race
An all too familiar and time-tested method to hold yourself accountable to a deadline. Backtracking your schedule to be able to reach x miles by x date will get you moving quickly. Especially if you’ve experienced a race where you completely bonked. That is a surefire way to DEmotivate. Plus, you can make it fun! Travel to a new city to race in. Sign up with friends. Make it a costume-wearing fun run. Anything to give yourself an end goal. Once the goal has been reached, you’ll feel the most amazing sense of accomplishment. And, you’ll oftentimes be immediately ready to sign up for the next race.
Celebrating the Mini Win
I celebrate training sessions by sharing with all my social followers, coworkers, family – I RAN TODAY & I RAN THE FURTHEST I HAVE IN A WHILE & IT FELT AWESOME! Or something like that. Hitting that little button ‘Post to Twitter’ is my very own mini-win ceremony after a run. A version of a mindfulness ritual perhaps. Make it up! Whatever it is, pat yourself on the back. Feeling good about your effort at the end of one run will help you look forward to the next run.
Whenever I get any piece of new gear, I can’t wait to get out and put it to the test immediately. Lately I have enjoyed ‘New Jacket Day!’ and ‘New Shoe Day!’ – both of which employed the GORE-TEX® laminate. I was so happy with my new running shoes – I’d set a personal record for mileage. And on ‘New Jacket Day’, featuring my ONE MYTHOS LADY GORE-TEX® SHAKEDRY™ RUNNING JACKET, I was able to keep my training schedule and head out into stormy weather without having to worry about getting wet from the rain. It was super breathable and sweat-wicking, keeping me warm too. It goes without saying, having the right gear absolutely impacts your performance, and I always try to remember “There’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing.”
Now think about, create, and collect all the motivational tools that work for you – no matter how insignificant they may seem – they’re just for you. And, get out there, run your heart out and enjoy that post-run euphoria, reaching your goals, and especially enjoy treating yourself to any kind of ‘New Gear Day’!