Decide what is important to you. Does running really mean something to you and your life? For me, ABSOLUTELY! It is my go to for stress release but when I spend so much time stressing about running it becomes counterproductive. Personally, I let myself get too wrapped up in pace and comparison to past performance, get down on myself, feel bad about myself (and that doesn't help my depression), and the viscous running rut continues and spirals out of control. Don't do that. Learn from my mistakes, please.
So I have decided my primary rule for getting out of a running rut is to let go of all expectations in terms of pace and distance and just run. Run like a kid. Run for fun. I know, I know....easier said then done so lets look at some other tips to find the joy in running again.
1. If you can afford it, treat yourself to some new running gear to celebrate how far you have come. You can do this right away or set a SMART goal that you can reach. SMART is specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely. Maybe not running 1000 miles but going out for 5 runs. Just an idea. And if you are looking for treat ideas, I gotta say Bondi Band has great products and you can use EGFITNESS to get 10% off or head over to Elk River Soaps and get yourself some nice bath bombs. They are.....well....da bomb! And yes, these are affiliate links but I wouldn't share and promote them if I truly didn't love the products. Seriously, that would be tremendously uncool!
2. Get a running buddy if you can. This is hard for me but can be doable for so many and hey, look into running groups. We have two here on Maui - one on Sunday mornings that conflicts with church and one on Wednesday evenings that conflicts with darling's horse lessons but maybe you will be luckier. Both here are super friendly and open to all ages and paces.
3. Get a new training plan. Sometimes letting go of the old and doing something new brings fresh joy. I did this with a twist in my overall fitness plan by setting the goal to do 52 new workouts in 2017. Right now I am at 61 new workouts. Some were duds. Some were keepers but all were fun. Okay, almost all. I ditched one just minutes into it. It was a yoga workout that just left me feeling not good at all from the start so I abandoned it for another. But the workouts kept me moving for more minutes when my legs didn't want to run more miles.
4. Change things up. Maybe your running routine has become boring and let me tell you, running on the home treadmill does have a boredom factor. Maybe get a good book/audiobook to switch things up. Run outside if you can. Run somewhere new. And for me, when I couldn't switch much of this I cross trained. Didn't help much with the running rut per se but has kept me fit and I have grown stronger. This is kinda like #3 but I guess change is really important to me and the change can even be pace within your run. You know, run like a kid! Watch one run. They start and stop a zillion times. Try it.
5. Sign up for a gym membership, again, if you can afford it. This will help change things up for you and give you the chance to cross train if you don't have a home gym. I do miss the inspiration I got from others at the gym. Even the hello's were inspiring and the good job's when you left. People can make a world of difference! Hey, we all love a good job, don't we?
6. Raise some money! Running for a cause helps make your running mean more. I run for Toby through IR4 and recently set up a new virtual mission to run across Alaska for Toby AND to raise money so if you want to contribute to a charitable cause and keep me inspired, check it out HERE. To set up the mission with a charity I believe in it had to be done through PayPal but I promise you, 100% of funds raised will go to my charity of choice - Catholic Charities. Mahalo for your support and if you donate $75 or more, I will send you a gift - a rosary handmade with love by me.
|116.6 miles into the 719.2 mile mission|
|Maybe this icy patch is why I am running slower :)|
7. Finally, commit. I have been running at least a mile every single day since December 29, 2011 and that in itself helps keep me going even if I have had too many just a mile days this year. But, I am still running and for that, I am thankful.
Daily Gratitude: I am thankful I have a home treadmill.
Daily Bible Verse: Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift! ~ 2 Corinthians 9:15 ESV