Finding it difficult to maintain your running routine throughout winter? You are certainly not alone! Heading out for a run in the morning or evening when its dark, cold and gloomy takes a lot of mental strength and motivation, especially when it approaches the festive period! Here’s how you can stay motivated when selection boxes and Quality Streets are calling your name:
1. Run with friends/colleagues
One of the difficult things about being a runner is making the first steps out of the front door. What helps to do that is knowing you’ve got a friend waiting for you. I’ve started to run with colleagues after work two-three days a week which is keeping us all motivated. Log runs on weekends are also great for this. No one wants to run alone in 2 degrees on a Sunday morning, so call up your running friends and see who is up for a long run! Maybe even promise then a hot chocolate at the end of it, I know I would run with you if that was promised!
2. Set a winter goal
Goal setting is very important to keep us on track. It doesn’t matter if you are training for your first marathon/ultra, building up your fitness, running to boost your mental health or just for the love of it. Set some challenge goals for this winter. Why don’t you choose a distance that you would like to beat your PB or 2019 time for? Don’t forget that Summer goals are achieved because of the hard work you put in during winter!
3. It’s tough and so are you!
Whether you are an early riser getting your run in before the day starts, hitting the pavement during your lunch break or heading out in the evening for a run, winter running is tough. Throw into the mix a bit of snow and rain to make a cocktail of a tough running session ahead. However, don’t forget that you are out there still! Running in tough conditions will improve your mental strength and drive. On the days when you don’t feel like running, you will be able to remind yourself ‘actually I’ve run in a lot worse’. And come summertime, you will not struggle to ‘get back into running’. You’ll be well on your way to achieving some amazing running goals!
4. Sunrise running
One of the most gorgeous things in winter is watching the sunrise through the trees. A close second is knowing that this won’t happen until around 7-7:30 am so you get a cheeky sleep in! Get your kit ready the night before so you can simply wake up and hit the pavement. It’s usually rather peaceful at this time of the morning and provides a wonderful setting for some you time. It’s these moments that certainly will help me get through the winter months of running!
By Andrew Vandenberg