If you’ve been away from running for a while, now is the always the best time to start getting back into it. Whether you’re looking to take up running again as part of a fitness routine or just wanting to reconnect with that feeling of accomplishment, here are seven tips to help get your running journey back on track.
Start Slow and Steady
When you first start running again, it’s important not to overdo it. Instead of pushing yourself too hard right away, begin with shorter distances and slower paces. This will give your body time to adjust and build endurance without risking injury or burnout. Once you feel comfortable with your current distance and pace, then gradually increase both until you reach your desired level. Too much too soon can make you feel discouraged, and starting slow and giving yourself grace is the best way to reignite your love of running.
Set Realistic Goals
Setting goals is an essential part of any successful running plan. Before setting any goals however, be sure that they are realistic and attainable given your current fitness level. For example, if you haven’t run in over a year consider creating short-term goals such as increasing your mileage each week before aiming for longer distances or races. Goals can also be non-running related such as creating a playlist for motivation or incorporating strength training into your fitness routine for extra support when running.
Plan for Success
Plan out your mileage, your outfits, your breakfasts. Set yourself up for success by making it easy to achieve. On days you don't feel motivated, this will take the guess work out of your runs and you won't feel the pressure of deciding what to do next. Planning out everything will make it easy to get up and get out there.
Mix Up Your Workouts
Adding variety to your workouts can help keep things interesting and prevent boredom from settling in. Incorporate different terrain types such as trails, hills, or tracks into your runs as well as different forms of cross-training like cycling or swimming which can provide additional physical benefits while giving the body a break from the repetitive motions associated with running.
Take Breaks When Needed
Rest days are just as important as active days when it comes to staying healthy and avoiding injury so make sure that you give yourself time off when needed; even if that means taking two days off after every workout instead of one day off every other day – what matters most is listening to your body’s needs so do what feels best for you!
This will be different for everyone, but find what makes you look forward to your runs. Is it a new outfit to run in, a great new playlist, a race to train for, or a reward you set for yourself once you achieve a goal? Find the thing that keeps you looking forward to your runs and it will go from a task to a reward, and think of it like that, something you get to do, not something you have to do.
Finding ways to stay motivated when returning to running can be challenging but there are plenty of easy ways to do this such as joining a group run or signing up for a race down the line – having someone (or something) counting on us has been proven time and time again to help us achieve our goals no matter how big or small they may be!
Find A Community
Last but not least, joining a local running group can be an effective way to stay motivated and get back into shape after taking a break from running for an extended period of time! Running groups typically offer support from fellow runners who are eager to help each other reach their goals through encouragement and friendly competition!
Running is not only great exercise but it also provides mental clarity and stress relief – all things we could use more of in today’s world! Taking these five steps will help set yourself up for success when returning back into the habit of running no matter how long it's been since you last laced up those sneakers! So don't wait - start today!