With my marathon only FOUR days away, I’m looking forward to making running “fun” again post-race. Since I’ve been really focused on a strict training plan for the past few months, I’m excited to get back to some of the things that always renew my love for running!
No matter if you’re a marathoner or a first-time 5K’er, running can (and should!) be fun!
- Find a new route. Sometimes, all you need to do is try a different route. I have a great, safe park by my house, but when you run it four times a week, it gets old. Be sure to switch it up!
- Sign up for a “fun” race. Whether it’s a color run 5K or a costume run, doing something different will make running seem even more fun! I’m really looking forward to the Rock n Roll half marathon that I just signed up for…bands at every mile in an awesome city? Count me in!
- Run with a friend. I always thought I liked running alone until I tried running with a friend. When running with someone else, I’m not focused on pace or time; I’m just focused on having fun and enjoying time together.
- Remember a mile is a mile. If I end up running slower than I typically do or slow my pace down for a friend, I’ll get frustrated. But, just remember — a mile is a mile, no matter how fast or slow you might go.
- Try a different type of run. The Farlek, tempo, Yasso 800s, hill intervals –challenge yourself to try something new!
- Treat yourself. You know how I get through long runs sometimes? Oatmeal. Sometimes, I’ll focus my last ten miles on the idea that when I finish, I get to eat a big, hot steaming bowl of oatmeal and peanut butter that’ll taste amazing. No matter what your treat, motivate yourself to the finish!
- Do a trail run. I never did trail running before last summer, but I absolutely love it! You definitely won’t be as fast, but it’s challenging and always fun to try a new terrain.
- Join a running group (or start your own!). Running with others is a great time to connect while being active.
- Try a new distance. Have you done a 5K, 10K, 15K, 10-miler, half marathon, full marathon, and ultra? Even if it’s not a race, tackling a new distance is a great way to keep running fun. (Remember, you’ll always get a PR in a new distance!)
- Smile. Yes, I’m serious. It sounds silly, but sometimes when I’m in the middle of a long run or a run I don’t really want to do, I’ll smile. When you think about it, it’s such a gift that you have the ability to run — to be outside, moving, just enjoying the environment. This simple thing can change the whole course of your run!