Thursday, December 17, 2009

Ways to stay motivated

I found a list of the top 10 questions asked by new runners , one of them had to do with staying motivated.

You can find the whole question list here

I do some of the things on the list

Question: I’m afraid I won’t be able to stick with the plan – how do I stay motivated?
  1. Sign up for a race. Do it now! Having a race goal (and race fees!) on the line will be a powerful source of motivation. I guarantee it. Done! :-D
  2. Run with a partner. And promise to get each other through the rough patches. Neither of you will want to let the other down. I don't run with a partner but Aubrey and I are doing a good job making sure the other one is running.
  3. Focus strongly on getting through the first three weeks. It takes roughly three weeks to establish a habit. If you can get past the first three weeks, your mind and body will find it much easier after that.This is very true - now running is less of a chore and more something that I want to get done - I get pretty bummed when I can't get a run in.
  4. Don’t overdo it. Running too fast, too far or too often in the beginning can burn you out, make you sore or get you injured and none of those things are very motivating.
  5. If you are taking up running to lose pounds, try not to focus solely on weight loss. This is because especially in the beginning of your running career you will likely gain some weight due to muscle growth – a very good thing because muscles burn fat. To get your attention away from the scale, take tape measurements and photos of your body every few weeks. You’ll be happy to see the inches dropping even if the pounds don’t initially follow suit.  I only weigh myself 1 time a week - but I try to always make it at the same time everyday - typically first thing. I also take  pictures every couple weeks. It feels awkward but I do it.
  6. Journal your experiences in a running blog or on a forum and connect with other runners for support. You’ll be amazed at just how much support you’ll get!
  7. Remind yourself often that at the end of the program you’ll be fitter, thinner and will be able to run for non-stop for an hour!

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