As much as I don’t believe in the idea of feeling motivated as necessary for you to get out there and go for a run or get that workout done, it’s true that sometimes you have periods of malaise that last longer than others. It’s great to push through those bad runs or go when you don’t want to for the first little bit but if a few weeks pass and everything feels like a struggle, it’s not very fun is it? And the truth is you rely on those good runs or good workouts to keep you inspired. But what happens when that disappears? And sometimes it does.
1) Change up the route. You might be bored. Running somewhere else can really help to make tings a bit more interesting.
2) Find people who are loving their running. You know who the most inspiring person is, that person who is really passionate and happy about what they are doing. When I’m in a rut, I get great inspiration from people like that, because I know soon that will be me again.
3) Identify the resistance. Sometimes there is a really good reason for your resistance. For example, if you are really not wanting to run intervals or do hill sprints, maybe it’s not that you don’t like speedwork – maybe it’s just that you haven’t been eating the right kind of food and your body is a bit run down.
4) Go anyway. Look we both know that you will probably feel crappy either way. You might as well feel crappy and have gotten out doors.
5) Read a book. People who don’t like to run, like to read about running. True story. Sometimes you can find your joy in the pages of someone else’s journey.
6) Get outside. For me a huge part of my joy of running is just being outdoors and I can get that without running. If I’m feeling run down or like I’m just not up for a run, a walk in the fresh air is just as good.
7) Don’t look at your watch or your app. Can a time turn a good run into a bad run? No it can’t. Ignore it and just enjoy the run.
8) Try something new. Maybe you want to try a dance class or yoga or lift some weights. Don’t wrap your entire self up in one form of exercise. Eventually you will want a bit of variety, or you will be injured and having developed a love of something else will reward you.
9) Set a new goal. If I was just running with no set goal in mind I don’t think I would lose interest but I think I would probably be less consistent. Setting a goal that inspires an equal amount of excitement and fear will get you out the door in no time.
10) Be part of a community of expectation. If you surround yourself with people who are also working towards similar goals, exercise just becomes part of your lifestyle, not something that you decide whether you will do or not.
11) Give yourself a break. Sometimes you need a rest day. Sometimes you need to miss going for a run. And barring injury or illness that’s fine for a week, but after that you better get yourself back out the door.