Burned out. Lost your mojo. Fallen off the wagon. We’ve all been there. Sometimes running seems more of a burden then the enjoyable activity we all love. Maybe we forget why we’re even doing it, or it sounds like the absolute last thing we possibly want to do. If you ever find yourself in this predicament, here are some suggestions to change your perspective and get back in the game:
Sometimes all you need to take the edge off your training schedule is to have a tech-free run — a run where you’re not constantly worried about meeting your goals of pace, distance or time. Get back to the basics and remember why you even started this crazy journey in the first place.
I felt blasphemous just typing that, but sometimes you need a break from the grind of running. Try cross-training a bit and you’ll quickly remember how much you enjoy running. This can also help give your body a break from any wear and tear running can cause, so you’ll be refreshed and ready to get back out there.
Explore a new route, take it to the trails, anything to switch up your normal routine and put the wonder back into it. I highly suggest getting outside. You could also make a new playlist to revive your workout. I know I tend to stick with the same list run after run until I find I’m skipping all the songs I’ve heard them so many times. A new playlist can make an old route seem new!
I participated in a scavenger hunt running challenge this past summer with a few friends. Not only did it take my mind off the run, but made it super fun to see what I could find. Also, it added a level of competition — and if you’re anything like me, you won’t want to lose.
I’m the first to admit I’d rather run by myself. Call me a humbug if you will, but I just prefer the solitude running gives me. However, the quickest way to de-stress is laughter, and who better to do that with than with a great friend? This will also force you to slow down and enjoy the run as you carry on a conversation with your buddy. This isn’t a “let’s push each other” run buddy, this is a decompressing run buddy. Choose wisely.
Themed races are all the rage right now in the running community. Pick your poison — hot chocolate, colored dust, mud, the world is your oyster! Unless you’re a Spartan warrior and are in it for the winning rather than the adventure, might I suggest an obstacle course? Be a big kid and play! This simple act can instantly put the fun back in your run.
Whether you decide to ditch the gadgets, get blasted by paint or take to the trails, simply remembering why you fell in love with running in the first place can take the stress out. So now it’s your turn! Which of these are you going to try? Or better yet, how do YOU take the stress out of running?