Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Re-energize your running!

No kidding around: The winter doldrums can hit even the most motivated runners and cause energy levels to sag. 

It happens. The days are cold. The sun sets early. There's a ton of stuff to be done. Running might become a little flat.

If you feel like a saggy runner these days, I have some tips to help you break out of your slump. Read on . . . and then run on!

Re-energizing tip #1: READ!

A sure way to break out of a slump and re-energize your running is to read about the running exploits of others. Reading about how runners overcome adversity, manage to train for multiple marathons in a year, or find beauty in their daily 3-milers can be inspiring.
Ultra Marathon Man
by Dean Karnazes

For some, the over-the-top stories of ultrarunners like Dean Karnazes or Marshall Ulrich are just what they need to read to help them get out the door on days when their energy is flagging. 

For others, the observations of local runners dealing with the day-to-day challenges of regular runners everywhere are more motivating.
Regardless of where you fall on the spectrum, there are many resources for reading about running and runners. Start with these:
by Benjamin Cheever
  • Search your local library or bookstore to find books on running and runners. In addition to the two runners mentioned above, some authors to consider include Bart Yasso, Benjamin Cheever, John Brant and Christopher McDougall. 
  • Chances are, there are some inspiring local running bloggers in your city or town. Search for them online or contact your local running club and ask if they know of local running blogs. You might learn some new things about your local running community! 
Re-energizing tip #2: RACE!

If you put racing on-hold during the dark days of winter, you are missing out! One of the best ways to stay motivated and keep your energy levels up is to race because races force you to get outside -- and sometimes just running outside is all it takes to make you feel more energetic. The faster running can shake up your routine and put a little spring in your step as well. 
My local running club puts on a winter series of races that are incredibly low-key affairs. They are good opportunities to get in (supported) long runs, without having to worry about any of the hoopla that can surround bigger in-season races. Check out your local club to find some races for yourself -- or, plan a destination race that gets your running someplace else. A nice option for those of you who live in the colder climates (like me!).
Re-energizing tip #3: DATE!
Date? Yup, date. 
My third re-energizing tip is to make running dates with people you don't normally run with. Maybe someone faster than you or someone slower, or that running friend you haven't seen in ages . . . doesn't matter who it is, just make a date and run. If you usually run alone, just running with someone will be a treat! Try it out!

Do you have a go-to tactic for re-energizing your running
when you feel a slump coming on?

Thanks for stopping by ~ and happy running!

~ Felice

This post contains affiliate links.


Unknown said...

(add yer twitter handle to yer share button :-))

Felice Devine said...

Thank you! I did it.

Alyssa Duhe said...

As long as I am not too far away from a race I embrace the "slump". I feel like it means my body is telling me something. Perhaps I need to slow down, rest more or eat better.

Heather B said...

Some things that work for me are getting a new audiobook I only listen to while running, new running gear, local races every month. And I just recognize that every run isn't going to be fun, but they add up to better running later! :)

Melissa said...

I love the suggestion to read about running. That always works for me!

Unknown said...

The act of running in the snow and the difference it makes is actually pretty energizing to me. If I give myself permission to not worry about pace too much, I can simply enjoy the act of running for the pure essence of it.

Becky at Prairie Runner said...

I save my favorite playlist for days when I need extra motivation. Thanks for your tips!

Unknown said...

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