Part 3 – Running motivation: The essential guide to keep on running
Once you’ve taken those first steps out of the front door and hit the streets, you’ll start to discover the burst of adrenaline and release of feel-good hormones that come with running. You’ll feel great and start to enjoy the sense of achievement you feel every time you put your trainers on.
But, there will be days when you just don’t feel like heading outside, when it’s too easy to say ‘I’ll go tomorrow’ and switch on Netflix instead. But, as a beginner, now is the time that you need to keep the momentum going, to break bad habits and form new, healthy habits.
Keep going, don’t give up
So, how do you keep moving when you can hear the call of the couch? Try our top tips for staying focussed on your goals:
Make a date: Pick a day, plan a route, make sure you have your trainers ready and go! You won’t find time if you don’t make time, so schedule it into your days. Put your trainers by the front door or put them in the boot of your car for a post-work work out, with no excuses.
Find a running buddy: Exercising with others can often keep you on track, and a running companion can be your most valuable asset in achieving your goals. You’re more likely to keep to a training date if you arrange a time with another person in advance. Once you’re both running at a comfortable pace and fall into a rhythm, some conversation can also be a useful distraction from the miles ahead. You may also find that your pace increases without you realising, as you gently push each other forward.
Reset your goals: If your long-term dream is to cross the finish line of a half-marathon, it’s more than likely to be a little overwhelming to a complete beginner. Setting yourself a series of ‘mini-goals’ before reaching the final target might be helpful. Building up gradually from 5k to 10k, and slowly increasing your mileage should help to keep you focussed, without feeling intimidating. Following a training programme is great, as it gives you something to aim for at each stage, as well as having an end goal.
Change routes: Rediscover your sense of adventure. Find new places to run and explore! Uncovering routes may also mean you find more challenging terrain. You’ll be so interested in your new surroundings, you won’t notice the extra effort you’re putting in to climb the new hill you’ve found.
(Remember safety first, avoid running in remote areas, make sure that somebody knows when to expect your return, avoid running alone at night-time.)
It’s important to know that everyone has bad days, whether you’ve been running for one week or ten years, but more often than not, you’ll find yourself feeling better after heading out for a quick run, and you’ll wonder why you were stopping yourself to begin with.
Make sure to follow the PremierPhysio blog for more tips and advice on running for beginners.