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Train Your Mind for Running – 5 Motivational Tips

It is common to take up running as a form of exercise at some point in our lives. While some of us might give up on it as soon as the motivation runs out, this does not have to be the case for you! After all, do regular runners have a magic formula that keeps them going? The clear answer to that is, “No.” Rather, avid runners often employ a few mind training tricks that help them stay the course when the going gets tough.

Train Your Mind for Running
"Jogging at Princess Park" by will ockenden is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Tips to Keep Running and Stay Motivated

1. Run with your buddies:

There is a social aspect to most activities that attracts and motivates us. It’s easy to start (and keep) running when you have the support of your friends or because you enjoy the camaraderie of not completing the task alone. Gather some of your pals to run with and use that knowledge to keep yourself going even when you are tempted to cut some slack on a day when they’re not feeling up for the challenge.

2. Maintain a training log:

It’s easier to track your progress when you write it down. Keep a notebook handy or start a running blog where you can write up notes including the date, time and miles covered during each workout performance. Occasionally glancing through your previous entries will be a pleasant reminder of your progress from an inexperienced “newbie” to a more serious runner.

3. Set a goal:

Tie your workouts to a realistic goal such as a 5k or even a full marathon (if you feel up to it). Establish a training schedule and put it up in a prominent place as a constant reminder of your goal. Once you achieve your goal, celebrate it by surrounding yourself with reminders of your success so that you can retain some of that same enthusiasm about running.

4. Reward Yourself:

Running may be its own reward, but it’s a great idea to treat yourself to something special every once in a while. A relaxing massage, signing up for a running retreat or indulging in some delicious treat that you often deny yourself – take your pick from whatever motivates you to get through each workout without giving up halfway.

5. Have fun while you run:

Most of us subscribe to the ‘no pain, no gain,’ philosophy when it comes to exercise. But if you actually enjoy running you’re more likely to stick with it than if you’re doing it as a chore that ups your stress levels. Change your route or jogging playlist as often as possible to keep things interesting.

There’s a runner in you just waiting to be discovered. What are you letting get in your way?

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