A runner taking place in a event

5 motivational running tips for when you’re flagging!

No two runners are the same. Some of us like to hit the pavements early in the morning, some of us like the hubbub of the gym – pounding the treadmill after work- and some of us hit the trails at the weekend, preferring the fresh air and varied scenery.

Just as our running preferences aren’t the same, neither is the way we stay motivated. Keeping motivated to carry on running (especially when you’re hitting a wall) is completely unique to each individual runner. The tactics that work for you, might not work for your running buddy and vice versa.

This is why we’ve put together some helpful tips – to get you thinking about they best way to help motive yourself when you’re stuck in a running rut!

#1 Add some variety in your training

When your training becomes boring or stale, you’ll quickly lose interest or your running motivation. To make sure this doesn’t happen, try adding variety into your training.

You could try:

  • Finding a new running route.
  • Experiment with new running workouts. If you’re used to tackling a daily 5k, why not mix it up and try taking the first half at a slow pace, building to a moderate pace and then pushing really hard for the last part. There’s loads of great ideas you can try – check out some more training plans.
  • Set up a different playlist – you might find some interesting ideas in this Time Out article.

Make sure you find something that works for you, and keep on trying new things.

#2 Forget about pace and distance

When training for a race like a 10k or half marathon, your enjoyment of running can quickly be overtaken because you’re worried about your pace or weekly mileage.

Take a moment before your run to remind yourself how much you love it! You get up and get those running shoes on because it’s something you enjoy – not just because you’re striving to excel in a training plan.

Think about the opportunity running provides: the chance to get outdoors in the fresh air, among nature; the chance to challenge yourself on your own terms and a chance to spend some time for yourself!

Why not leave your running watch at home and go for a mindful run. You might find you feel much better for it.

#3 Run with a friend

If you’re struggling to stick to your running plan then finding a running pal might just help. By having someone to run with they’ll help to keep you accountable to show up regularly.

Don’t be afraid to run with someone who’s faster or slower than you are. By running with someone who has a difference pace than you, you might find different challenges present themselves. Maybe you have to speed up to keep the pace. Or maybe they’re a bit slower than you are – maybe going that bit slower might help with your longevity and you’ll find yourself getting further?

And – of course – running with a friend is fun! When your run doubles up as a nice time with your friend, catching up and having a laugh you’re much more likely to feel excited for your regular workout.

#4 Join a running group

A running group could be just what you need to reignite your running mojo.

Depending on the type of group you join, you could receive some helpful hints and tips on how to improve your running performance.

Why not try looking up your local Park Run, join the Couch to 5k movement Or join our Facebook group and connect with others taking on runs for St Barnabas House!

Running groups are also great for the social side of running, as many groups nowadays organising group runs that end up in the local pub or café where you can get to know people and share your love of running!

#5 Think of the post-run reward

To boost your motivation you could try treating yourself with small rewards after each run. This could be something simple and instantly gratifying like a hot shower, a tasty smoothie, a sweet treat or your favourite meal.

Or maybe set yourself some bigger goals and once you’ve reached them treat yourself to a bigger reward, like a  massage or a flashy new pair of trainers.

Not all rewards need to be physical items, what about the satisfaction and mental reward of a full training plan ticked off?