I’ve lived in Utah since 2005. I grew up in a mountain state with lots of snow. I have never experienced a more relentless winter than this year. If it isn’t snowing, it’s 5 degrees out. If the air is clean, the roads aren’t safe to run on. I joined a gym that’s open 24-hours, and there have been a couple times where I have wanted to go run there because of weather, but then I couldn’t get my car out of the drive-way to go to the gym! It’s quite frustrating to feel trapped and stuck. The worst part is, when the weather does clear up and becomes what we wished so hard for just the week before, we are suddenly so demotivated we don’t care.
For me, the weather effects my consistency, and in-turn effects my fitness. Then when the weather cleans up, I get out there and I feel like I’ve never run before. It’s awful! Tell me I’m not the only one.
It’s hard to stay motivated, but it is still hard even when all your excuses are gone. Here are 8 thing you can do to get your behind out the door.
1. Have a pep talk with yourself. Pull out the goals you wrote down not just 4 weeks ago and re-read them. Do they still excite you? Visualize what it looks like to complete them. If your goals need re-writing, that’s fine, but make sure you aren’t being a laze. Hold yourself to the highest standard. Some of you reading this have probably accomplished amazing things in your life. You aren’t going to let a few training runs stop you from being awesome are you?
2. Make sure you have the gear you need. If not having warm clothes is keeping you from getting out the door, now is a great time to buy apparel. We have almost all of our winter apparel on sale by 30-50%. It’s not every year that you can wait to purchase and still actually get to use the stuff, but that doesn’t look like a problem this year. If you need Yak Trax or Ice Trekkers, mention this blog post and get %20 a set until they are gone.
3. Change up the routine. If you run the same routes, the same times of the day, the same distances, change it up. Whatever that means to you, do it. It helped me to join a Crossfit gym and a regular gym. I thought I would hate running inside, but it turns out that running while watching the Biggest Loser is the most motivating thing ever! And Crossfit is just awesome… that’s a different post.
4. Sign up for a race that is going to make you push yourself. There are the races that we do EVERY YEAR. We plan on them, we register for them, we run them, just like clock-work. How about signing up for a race in the next month or two that you wouldn’t normally do? There are great races in warm places all year long. The Canyonlands Half Marathon is coming up March 16th. It’s a great race!
5. Get a running buddy, or 10. When I know someone is waiting for me, I am almost ALWAYS there. Running with other people is great because it makes you faster, makes it go by faster, and helps you remember why you love running so much. It doesn’t have to be a weekly thing, just call up a friend and make plans to go for a run together, and then go grab a cup of tea.
6. Stop sabotaging yourself. If you know that you need to get up early to run or else you won’t have time, then don’t stay up until 1 am watching The Bachelor, checking Instagram, updating your facebook status, stalking old boyfriends on facebook, watching ESPN, QVC, etc. Go to bed. It’s simple, yet so hard. But, it will make the morning so much easier.
7. Bring your mantra to life! Do you have a running mantra? Mine is ”Wake up and be a WARRIOR!” (when you say warrior, you have to yell it, and raise a fist into the air). It’s written on my road-id bracelet. I look at it every day. I have a mantra for the year as well, and it is “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” I brought it to life by painting it on my wall in my room where I will read it every day. It reminds me what I want for myself this year and what I need to do to accomplish my goals. You can write your mantra on your mirror, make it the background on your phone, etc.
8. When the going gets tough, the tough get going! “Normal” people don’t run outside in a snow storm. They sit in their homes and watch the snow fall in the street light. Runner’s aren’t normal. Runners are hard core, tough, and lean mean fighting machines. We don’t take no for an answer! We don’t back down from an epic trail run when the conditions are rough. We unite in awesomeness! YOU ARE A RUNNER! Whether you are a first time 5k runner, or a 20x ultra runner, if you run, you are a runner. You are made of awesome. Now get out there and show everyone what “normal” is missing out on.