Running for beginners part 3 - running motivation

Maintaining your running motivation

This guide will help you maintain your motivation for running. We'' show you why goals are important and give you helpful tips on ways you can boost your running motivation:

If you are still finding running tough after a few weeks of training, remember it's worth sticking with. Running is something you’re hopefully going to do for life, so take your time. Allow plenty of time for recovery and rest between sessions, and set realistic goals — that way you won't get disappointed or worse, injured.

In the early days, a good way of monitoring your progress is to look at other factors other than mileage. For example, your running technique may have improved, you’re able to touch your toes when you stretch, you’re able to make it to that lampost without stopping etc. Remember, don't compare your progress to anyone else — no one else has the same physiological make-up as you!

For your running motivation, it can really help to have a running partner. If you have days when you don't feel up to it, your partner might just be able to prompt you into getting those trainers on.

Schedule your running to boost your running motivation

Another key factor is being organised, so sit down and make a schedule of when you are going to do your runs. Studies show that people who exercise in the morning tend to be more successful at sticking to their fitness routine than those who leave it until later in the day. Choose whatever works for you.

woman running beach

Get some new running gear to boost your running motivation

Buying new kit will boost your running motivation. All you really need in the way of gear is a decent pair of running shoes and, for the ladies, a sports bra is a must.

Ideally, buy your running shoes from a specialist shop, where staff can assess your running gait (the way in which you run), and advise on the best running shoes for you. Expect to pay a decent sum for the kind of support, cushioning and stability that are integral in a running shoe. You will often require running shoes around half a size larger than you normally wear for your everday footwear.

For sports bras, comfort and fit are the two essentials. The bra should be snug and level all the way round, but don't get one that is so tight that it is likely to restrict your breathing. Flat seams help to avoid chafing while wider straps are less likely to dig in to your skin. Don’t be tempted to wear a tight fitting top or everyday bra, even if you’re small busted, as this will result in irreversible damage to to the Cooper’s ligaments that support the breasts.

Here are a few other bits that you may need:

  • A reflective bib for running in the dark.
  • Any sports or gym kit will do for your first few outings. Technical fabrics are better at wicking sweat away from your body.
  • A water bottle is useful to ensure you maintain well hydrated.
  • A stopwatch or sports watch can help you get your timing right when you’re mixing walking and running.

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