5 things that will get you running…again
Why, oh why, do I stop running? Getting back into shape is SO HARD. You know what I mean?
It happens so quickly…we give ourselves one or two days off because, well, life gets in the way. Before you know it, weeks have gone by and we’ve lost our running mo-jo!
I don’t know about you, but if I’ve been on a little running “hiatus,” it can be difficult to get back in the swing of things. But, here are a few things that make me want to lace up my running shoes again.
- Sign up for a race – Just go ahead and do it! This is, by far, the biggest motivator for me. Once I take the step of signing up and paying money, there’s no turning back. It’s great if you can find a race that supports a charity. It’s very inspiring to be surrounded by thousands of other people, knowing that you are all running for the same cause. Grab some friends and make it a social event. There’s usually always a fun after-race party with good eats and a swag bag for runners…just sayin’.
- Make yourself a rockin’ playlist. Music is key for me. A great song can push me a little harder, a little longer or help me through a particularly grueling long run. A little Pitbull goes a long way! Some favorites on my current playlist right now are: Good to Be Alive (Andy Grammer), My House (Flo Rida), Whip It! (Lunch Money Lewis), I’m Good (Kids In Love) and Geronimo (Sheppard).
- Find a partner – it doesn’t matter if it is human or furry, or even a furry human! My chocolate lab, Charlie, loves to come running with me. There’s no way I can refuse those sad puppy dog eyes and he loves to cool off in the pool afterwards. He’s such a goof! Your husband, a girlfriend or even a running group will help keep you on track and you’re less likely to cancel a training run if you know they’re counting on you.
- Decide on a mantra…and repeat it often – sounds corny, but I believe in the power of positive self-talk and reinforcement. Find a saying or a slogan that resonates with you and say it to yourself while running. On one of my running routes a few years ago, I would pass the local hospital. Every time I ran past, I would thank God for my health…I kept telling myself that I was blessed to be healthy and strong enough to run! Sometimes on a really tough run or in the final stretch of a race , I will simply say to myself, “One foot in front of the other.”
- Use your arms!! – I know we think running is all about our legs, but using your arms can really help with momentum. This advice came from my sister, an accomplished runner and Boston marathoner. A few years ago we ran the Houston half marathon together. About 2-3 kms from the finish line, she could tell I was hurting and she simply said, “Mich, use your arms!” I swear that’s what got me across the finish line. To this day, when I’m struggling, I think about pumping my arms…and it helps!
My daughters and I are signed up for the Sprint for Life 5K this weekend. Ovarian cancer research is a cause that is very close to our hearts and it seemed like a perfect run to do on Mother’s Day weekend. Here’s to all the grandmothers, mothers, sisters, aunts and friends we know who are battling this terrible disease.
How do you stay motivated with your running or exercise regime? Do you have any favorite events or races that you do every year?