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Staying Motivated With Your Running And Training

Books to Improve your Running

Staying motivated to run is one of the problems which faces many runners. Whether you are a novice runner or a runner who has been running for years, it can be difficult to stay motivated to run on a regular basis. There are a number of factors which may contribute to a loss of motivation. Some of these factors may include boredom, muscle soreness or even a lack of time. If you are like most runners, you have likely faced a lack of motivation at least once in your running career. It may start out slowly with you skipping one or two runs here and there but it may gradually progress to the point where you are rarely running, if you do not find ways to stay motivated. This article will provide a number of different tips for keeping a runner motivated to stick with a running program.

Setting realistic goals is one of the easiest ways for a runner to stay motivated to continue running. One of the common goals runners like to use to stay motivated is a goal of completing a race. Selecting a race and training for and competing in this event can provide a great source of motivation which can prevent a runner from abandoning a running program. You may select a long distance event such as a marathon or shorter events such as a 10K race, a 5K race or even shorter events. The distance of the event you select should depend on your personal goals. If you simply want to stay motivated to run on a regular basis, competing in short races periodically is an excellent way to stay on track. Setting a goal such as completing a race is motivating because the runner is capable of focusing on the training which will motivate him to continue with the running program.

Another type of goal a runner may wish to set in an effort to stay motivated is to improve on race times on a regular basis. For example a runner who recently completed a 5K race in 35 minutes may set a goal of completing a subsequent 5K race in a faster time of approximately 33 minutes. With this goal in mind the runner will likely stay motivated to continue running so they can achieve their goal when they enter the next race. Runners can then continue to set progressively faster goals or may branch out and set goals of running longer races once they reach a point where they feel as though they cannot improve on their speed anymore.

Runners can also stay motivated to keep up a running program by incorporating variety into the running program. Many runners make the mistake of believing running laps on a track or following the same course through their neighborhood is the only way to stay dedicated to a running program. However, this couldnít be further from the truth. This type of mentality can lead to both mental and physical burnout. Additionally, the runner will not likely improve under this type of program because the body will become more efficient at completing the course and as a result will require fewer calories and tax the muscles less to complete the running course. A better approach to running is to vary the courses you are running in terms of distance, speed, intensity and terrain regularly to keep both the mind and the body challenged.

These types of variations in a workout are relatively easy to incorporate but can be very effective for keeping the workouts interesting. The terrain can be varied by running on trails which have a series of hills. This change of pace will likely make the surroundings more interesting and the varied terrain will challenge the runnerís body in new ways. Runners can vary the intensity of a workout by incorporating sprint intervals into the running. A runner who regularly runs four miles on a track can modify his workout a few days a week by sprinting on the straight sections of the track and jogging on the curved portions of the track for a portion of the workout. These sprint intervals make the workout seem to go faster and also challenge the muscles in a different way.

Running with a friend is another way for a runner to stay motivated to stick with a running program. Running does not have to be a solitary activity. Having a friend along can not only help to keep you motivated but can also make the runs more enjoyable. You can chat with your friend about a number of different subjects to pass the time which will make the running seem less monotonous. You can also challenge each other to improve by having friendly competitions. Another reason, running with a partner helps a runner to stay motivated is most people are likely to fulfill their obligations when someone else is counting on them. Sometimes just knowing someone is waiting to run with you can motivate you to complete your workout. Conversely, if you were working out alone, it is much easier to decide to take the day off.

Finally, it is important for runners to take some time off from running occasionally, in an effort to stay motivated. This may sound counterintuitive but it is actually quite effective. Cross training can help a runner to stay in shape but can also give him a well deserved break from running. One way to incorporate cross training into your running program is to participate in another type of activity in place of your running 1-2 days per week. For example you may wish to ride a bike on these days instead of running. Another day to incorporate cross training into your workout routine is to take one week every couple of months where you donít run at all but you engage in other physical activities. After your brief hiatus from running you will likely find yourself recharged and less likely to give up your running program all together.


The video clip above is from my DVD about running stetches and other running related information. Click on the DVD case below to find out more.

Running Stretches and Running Tips

Click Here to view the DVD.

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