This winter season has been especially tough for runners. I feel like we’re all in a big slump. Don’t want to go outside in the freezing temperatures, don’t want to hit the treadmill again. Honestly, it can be hard to stay consistent with running any time of the year. Lest we all forget, it will be 90 degrees pretty soon and we’ll be having the same issues! So how do you keep a regular running habit going? Here are my top 5 Tips to Run Consistently!
1) Join a club
This one is easy! There are running clubs in virtually every city across the world! If you are motivated by others and like to be social, joining a running club is definitely for you. Google running clubs in your city, find out when they meet, and choose the ones that run at convenient times for your schedule. It always helps to keep you consistent when you know you’re meeting up with friends!
If you’re in St. Louis, make sure to check out Happy’s Running Club on Tuesday nights!
2) Find a running buddy
Start running with a friend or family member, maybe even your spouse or child. Often, setting up a date with a running buddy is the best way to keep you motivated! You tend to keep the dates because you’d be inconveniencing another person if you cancel, plus it’s just nice to have someone else to work out with sometimes. Running with a friend can provide a bit of encouragement or distraction in the moments that get tough, and many times can make the run go by faster than if you were doing it on your own. It’s fun to train with another person for a goal race too. And even better, choosing the right training companion can actually make you faster! That will keep you consistent for sure!
3) Consult a coach
There are a lot of free running plans out there on the interwebs. Plans for getting started, to your first 5k, all the way up to a marathon. And while there are indeed some decent ones out there, there is a lot of crap. So how do you weed through the crap and find a plan that might actually work for you, that you might actually stick to? Get in touch with a coach. Research a few coaches in your area, check out their credentials and experience, and send them a quick email with what you’re looking for. Chances are you’ll find that they can give you a custom plan for a very reasonable price. Trust me, the small investment will be worth it in the long run, and will save you a lot of frustration! A plan individualized for your schedule and ability will keep you on track much better than something generic.
4) Track your progress with a paper or online journal, or app
A training diary can be an incredibly useful tool when it comes to staying consistent with your running. It helps you see what you are doing, how you are progressing, and how you are feeling. And just as with writing down what we eat, seeing the progress in writing helps keep you on track. Personally, I love writing down all the little details so I can page through at the end of the year. It’s interesting, and useful, to look back at training cycles and highs and lows. With online tools and apps, this process is enhanced with the ability to join groups and track yourself among fellow runners. With some apps, you can even earn rewards for your progress, get on-the-run encouragement, and tons of other features!
5) Sign up for a race
Just about the best way to stay on track and stay consistent! You’re financially invested now, and you have a date set in stone. With a goal race on the books, you’re definitely more likely to stay on target with your training. It’s something really fun to look forward to, and definitely a reward for all your hard work and consistency!
What keeps you consistent with your running?