It’s Saturday morning and you decide to go for a run, you decide to make this a morning ritual and be that healthy beacon of life you’ve always expected from yourself. You step out the door, run around the block a few times. The runner’s high is palpable, the sweat on your face makes you smile, you promise yourself you’ll do it again. It’s been weeks and your running shoes are still where you left them that Saturday morning, you feel defeated and contradictory as it sounds it makes you want to stay home and not go for a run.
We’ve all been there, we’ve all done that. How do you start running again and not stop? How do you make it an unbreakable habit?
- Be flexible: find a running schedule or a running plan, stick to it but be flexible. If you missed a workout don’t beat yourself up for it, it will only make you want to quit altogether. Simply skip it and continue the plan.
- X marks the spot: get a physical calendar and every time you get out there mark an X. The more X’s you have the more you’ll want. This personally appeals to my collector’s side.
- Keep it interesting: doing the same 3 mi run every morning is no fun, change things up every once in a while; it will keep it fun rather than feel like a chore.
4. Take a break: might sound counterintuitive but your running muscles need a break, try doing something like cycling, swimming, or strength training. You can either do one session of cross training a week, or take a whole week off running to do all these things. Using your running muscles non-stop can fatigue them and eventually lead to injury.
5. Sign up for a race: this is my #1 advice for friends wanting to get into the running world. You’ll meet new people with the same or similar goals, you’ll have a finish line in sight (hehe), and believe me, once you do one you’re hooked. The emotions you get from running any type of distance race are unique; the feeling of camaraderie from other runners, the support of strangers that are dedicating their Saturday morning to you, and the pure joy from achieving a goal you’ve been working towards for weeks!