Even with the best of intentions and the spare time to do it, actually getting yourself up and out the door for your run can often require an extra boost of motivation. Whether it’s a short 5 mile run, or a full Marathon, that you have ahead of you, there are some basic steps you can take to help motivate you and get your body and mind pumped for your run.
Consider Your Energy Sources
If you don’t have the energy stores required to get you through your run, you are likely to hit a wall early on, so what you have recently eaten is an important consideration. This is especially true if you are preparing for a long marathon, as those long runs often require weeks of preparation. Running requires energy, and not short bursts, but energy that will sustain you. Even with just a small run you want to ensure you have the energy required to get you to the end. That being said you don’t want to have eaten too soon before you run, and you want to consider the types of foods you are eating so you can avoid feeling sluggish and nauseous.
- Good food choices include those high in protein and complex carbs, such as boiled eggs, whole grain toast, cottage cheese, bananas, nuts and seeds, oats and Greek yogurt.
- Bad food choices include high sugar high, fat foods such as donuts, muffins, sugary processed cereals and fatty bacon and hash browns. The energy from sugary foods is not sustainable and these fatty food choices are likely to repeat on you and make you feel sick whilst you run.
Sort Out Your Playlist
Music is a great motivator, so sort your music out beforehand, so that you don’t have to stop and adjust it along the way. If you prefer to run without music then consider playing a motivational song (Maybe the ‘Rocky’ theme song?), to get you pumped up as you gear up for your run.
Everyone has their own taste in music, and there is no right or wrong here, but aim for something that motivates you and makes you feel good about yourself. Finding music with a good steady rhythm is great because it will help you maintain your pace.
Remember Why You Are Doing It
It’s a good idea to list all the reasons you are going to go for your run, to help motivate you and get you in the right mindset. These reasons might include the health benefits, getting you into shape, or how good you feel after completing your run.
Whether you write them down, or just go over them in your head, these little reminders will really help to motivate you and get you pumped for your run.
Wear The Right Gear
This doesn’t mean you have to go out and buy the most expensive brands, but you do want to be comfortable, and you want to choose clothing that breathes. Restrictive clothing is going to become very uncomfortable very quickly, so make sure that you choose clothes that are appropriate for the weather conditions, that fit comfortably and that aren’t likely to ride up or become uncomfortable during your run.
If you are running a half or full marathon, don’t head out in brand new gear, as you may discover something about them that is irritating or uncomfortable half way through your run. Opt for clothes that you know will remain comfortable.
Having the right shoes is incredibly important. Not only do you want to run in shoes you have already broken in, but you need to make sure they are providing your joints with the support you need. Shoes also help motivate you, if your shoes feel comfortable and light, you are going to feel light and energised, and if your shoes are heavy or uncomfortable then this is going to impact on your motivation.
Start With A Warm Up
The type of run you are about to embark upon will determine the level of warm up that you require. For normal everyday runs, it’s good to do some basic dynamic stretching, and then start off with a walking pace. After you have walked for about 5 minutes, then slowly ease into your run. Remember the longer you intend to run, the longer you need to focus on your warm up. If you are planning a half or full marathon, then incorporate part of your warm up into the first part of the marathon, by walking or jogging the first mile.
If you follow these basic steps, you will find yourself pumped and ready to tackle any distance head on!