How to Run things this Season

Source: active.com

Source: active.com

“I succeed on my own personal motivation, determination and commitment. My mindset is: if I’m not out there training, someone else is.” – Lynn Jennings

Thursday gone was not the typical running day; rather it was windy, cold and dank, with the promise of temperatures getting progressively colder within the next few weeks. This is not strange at all but merely the signs of Autumn falling behind and Winter fast approaching; which then begs the question, If this is what it looks and feels like now, what will we do when Winter gets here? Since this is no simple question, it follows that the answer is not simple at all but should be more of a determined, precise and focused response to a challenge faced by many runners who live in seasonal climates, particularly that of Winter. A double challenge exists for those of us who, not only dislike the cold, but have Spring races lined up and must thus spend our Winter months in training.

Between the holiday festivities and the cold weather, I’d wager that training for a marathon or any other endurance-type race in not high up there on anyone’s wish list, mine least of all. But I’ve figured for some time now that being a runner ┬ámeans one rarely gets vacation or even have off days. We are more likely to get a rest day in-between training, but really if one is in this thing competitively – even competing with oneself – then it’s pretty much open season on running. The truth is, after a while, it becomes a way of life and is no more scheduled than eating is; however, if you’re in that place where it’s still a bit of a chore then of course around this time it becomes the proverbial millstone. And ouch, that’s darn heavy. But, lucky you and me, we are not alone. Running, while often done solo, is at base a community sport and so wherever you may find yourself this holiday season, I urge you to link up with the local running community. This may take the form of a running meet up, running group, running club, a couple running buddies or a friend – those willing to share their run, experience or just company with you – will make all the difference to your cold, wet and even icy runs.

The more structure you add to your training is the more likelihood you have of it being a success. All this means is that you should add a training plan to your schedule, holidays included. This plan should be a guide to keep you focused and engaged taking into account the necessary rest days and dutifully rewarding you for your hard work. It helps if you either do this with a group or person for motivation and accountability and stick to a regular schedule as much as possible. For sure, we can’t always be certain how things will pan out especially with the weather; snowstorms, road blockages, black ice, loss of power, any number of things could and may go wrong. While we can’t control any of these, we are certainly resourceful and determined and so it’s useful to add a plan B to your training schedule as well as to ensure maximum leverage of this training period. The gym: cross training, spin or cycling or a conditioning or aerobic class and/or the treadmill or indoor track are good just-in-case options, at-home: You Tube workout video, jump rope, Pilates, yoga or even just hooking up with a friend for a jog around the block, park or a local school track if it’s crazy out.

You will find that, as it becomes more routine than novelty, those runs will inspire more challenge and greater effort. Aside from the bonus of staying fit and looking fabulous through Christmas and into the New Year, there will be no guilty pleasures, for everything you eat is well deserved and thus tastes twice as good. You may even find that you’re actually looking forward to getting out, nothing like the fresh, cold air and a training run to work up an appetite and leave you invigorated and ready to run the world.

Tools for the Skeptic Runner: Beginner Tips

One of your New Year goals may have been to start exercising or running; to lose weight, be fit or just because. Well, it’s been twenty-two days and counting already: Where’d the time go? I’m so not ready for this. I still haven’t found the time! I’ll start next month. These may be some excuses that’s been running around in your head while your feet have been going nowhere fast. Well I’m here to remind you. I’m a big believer in a person keeping their word. The way I see it, when it’s all’s said and done, that’s all you have left and it defines you.

So I found this video on YouTube and it’s really great for those starting out, wanting to start or even if you’re still in the debating-which-form-of-exercise zone. The key is really just starting, putting aside all reservations, making time in your busy schedule-just as you would make time to do any of the other very important things on there – cause really, you have to want it badly enough, and putting one foot in front of the other and stepping up and out. You look at others who are fit and you admire that, you want what they have, then you have to be willing to do the work.

First off, you have to commit to it, do whatever is necessary to get what you want; go to bed early to be well rested so you feel good. Get out there – if you can’t make running to start, then walk. You walk until you can run, never mind others and what they’re doing. This is about you and your don’t-give-up mentality because you want to look better and feel better. Like I always say, running is no easy feat sure but it’s not just for talented runners, who by the way, have the same natural ability you have, they’ve just cultivated it more and so it’s only natural and fair that they reap the benefits..they did the work. No BS excuses. They had a goal and saw it through. Now how about you?

Video

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