Finding the motivation needed to start a running regime can be difficult. Especially if you have never ran before or it has been sometime since you ran last. There are tons of things that get in the way of exercise and most of us will find any reason not to go running. To improve your running performance you will need motivation and you will need to find a way to utilize that motivation.
Here are a few quick tips on how to find motivation to start running.
1) Start out easy
Beginning runners usually start out way too fast. If you have never ran before or have taken a long break from running you are going to need to ease into it. Set up a training plan that has you running/walking for the first little bit. If you start out pushing yourself too much you are likely going to get injured. Injuries are very hard on beginning runner because it sidelines you and you lose motivation. Even after some people are recovered from their injuries they are hesitant to start running again because of what happened previously.
If you want to improve your running in the very beginning it is crucial to stay injury free. To do this find a reasonable training plan and set attainable goals. Don’t worry about how far you ran today just worry about getting quality training time in.
2) Set Goals
Goals are what keep everyone going. Every day we set goals, however small they are, and we usually accomplish those goals. It is taking this kind of goal setting and using it to improve your running.
Beginning runner usually set very high goals. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing but if you have never run 5 miles straight then setting a goal of running an ultra marathon by the end of the year might be a little out of reach. However setting a long term goal like running an ultra is a good thing but set smaller goals in between.
A good way to start is to set a goal of running/walking for 3-4 days a week. A good thing to do with this is either set a distance or time goal but not both. In the beginning you shouldn’t be too worried about your mile times. Just getting out and running is a great goal and if you are a beginning runner you may injury yourself if you set a time/distance goal.
3) Decide why you are running
This may seem pretty straight forward; I am running to get into shape, I am running to lose weight or I am running just because. The reason you are running plays a vital part in if you will continue to run or not. If you are running to lose weight and you don’t see a big enough weight loss in the first week you may stop running. If you are running because you wife/girlfriend/family/friends think you need to get into better shape then you aren’t really running because you want to and therefore will not enjoy it and will probably quit running eventually. However if you are running for yourself whether it is because YOU want to get into shape or YOU want to do something challenging, you are doing it for yourself and will more than likely enjoy it and stick with it more.
4) Find a running partner
Running with a friend can really help keep your motivation high. It is easy to skip out on a training session if it is only you but if someone is relying on you to be there you are more likely to go. Some people are hesitant to run with a partner because they feel they will hold them back or don’t want to be “shown up” by their training partner. For those people I suggest getting an online training partner. There are a ton of websites that you can get on and log your daily runs. You can then share these with others. It is a great way to have a training partner without actually running with someone.
Listening to an upbeat, high tempo song will help keep you moving. It is natural to start to move to the beat of a song you are listening to. Most people don’t even realize that they are running in cadence with the song. So take some time and go through your music library and find some songs that have a beat that you feel you can run to then create a playlist on your Mp3 player and go running.
On the other side of things some people don’t really care for Katy Perry or Metallica. For these people I suggest putting some classical music and/or some audio books on your Mp3 player. It is something to listen to while you run and will help keep your mind off of the exercise and will help to improve your running experience.