How to not only start, but continue running by building strong and healthy habits.
Have you ever tried running? Maybe you went out and 10min in you figured out that it’s not for you? Left the house euphoric & came back home feeling useless? Or maybe tried it for couple of weeks and then gave up again?
January is a time many pick up running. I’ve been running myself for 20 years and the increase of runners in the park is amazing. The only problem is that by the time February starts, at 7am I am alone again, doing my laps. I love running long, but also started at the very beginning. A walk/run training (mixing up couple of minutes of running with walking breaks). I know it’s hard. But it is so rewarding once you moved beyond that.
I would love you to give running another try in 2020. Maybe you have played with the thought… and I don’t need to tell you that January is a great time for it. But like I said, many start this month and it seems like the majority has given up in no time. I am an absolute running freak, so this list could be endless, but I tried to think of a few things out of my own running experience and what I observed when coaching beginners. I hope you will find some of them useful for your own running.
Start: I am not even taking a piss. You might already be running in your head, but not yet in reality. One day you just have to get out there and just give it a try. I know it’s intimidating and there are so many reasons why today might not be a good day. Seriously though, get out there and if just for 5min.
Build a habit: Imagine every morning when you’re getting ready for work, you would debate with yourself for ages if you actually really, really feel like going. From my experience as a running coach I can tell that 3 months is a good time period. Then you know for sure if it’s for you. One of my clients in a beginner group once told me:
‘I used to come home after a really stressful day feeling worn out and over communicated and relaxed with a glass of wine and sweets. I realised how powerful running is to unwind and relax.’ This made my day to hear! I am so happy when people can tap into the transforming power of running.
Try it long enough: Please just do me this one favour and try it a couple of times. Imagine it’s ice cream: Just cause you don’t like Banana Joghurt flavour (I mean, who does?), it does not mean ice creme is a bad thing, right?
Just start. No, you don’t need all the equipment, the 500smth Euro watch. Of course, when you spend a lot of money on equipment this might motivate you. However, just to try it out a decent pair of trainers will do. The rest you can still sort out once you’re hooked.
Start slow: Many friends tell me that running is just not for them. They feel out of breath and it feels like their run tries to kill them. The issue is usually cause they simply start too fast. Slow it down. It will do wonders. Try and run so slow that you could still get short sentences out. Maybe even try this out aloud (when there is no one around). I know this feels insanely slow. Don’t worry at all about your pace, this will come on its own once you build a base fitness.
Carrot or Stick? Pay attention to what motivates you. ‘Carrot or Stick’ what motivates you more? Personally it is often the feeling after: relaxed body, quiet mind… such bliss! 100% carrot these days.
Solo or group? There are so many amazing running groups available these days. It’s worth giving them a try. It might be a lot more fun for you to run with others. Many find it more motivating and easier to go with a little peer pressure. On the other hand there is also some magic in ‘running-me-time’. I can recommend giving both a try and finding what works at this stage for you.
Prepare: Prepare your clothing the night before. When you wake up, just put it on and then check how the weather is. Trust me, you don’t wanna hang out in your running kit without having gone for that run.
Kindness build a habit: Don’t judge your running by that 1 ‘bad’ run. It’s life- some days things work out, some they really don’t. Pick up your crown, fix it & move on. It does not make you a bad runner, or useless. Just human.
Races day: In my experience as a runner, but also as a coach, it’s incredibly motivating to have a goal. Maybe there is a local 5km or 10km you could sign up for?
Tried it all:Ok, you tried all off the above and you just don’t like running? Life is too short to do sport we hate. There is so much on offer & I hope you find exactly what you love.
I hope any of the above resonated and will make your running life last longer than January.
Always happy to hear from you – just drop me a message.