People have asked how I keep going. So here is a list of some of the secrets.
36 Tips For Keeping a Running Streak Alive
Defeat Lack of Motivation
One of the most challenging aspects of keeping a juggling and running streak alive is keeping your motivation high. There have been lots of weekend mornings where we stayed out late, drank a bit too much, and didn’t feel like strapping on the Brooks. Here are some motivators that work.
1. Follow a schedule. When it’s on paper, it keeps you inspired. You can find a training program for any race at Runner’s World.
2. Sign-up for races. There’s nothing like an impending race to keep your working out on trac.
3. Set goals. Give yourself some targets for the number of miles you’re going to log for the week, month and year. This year my mileage target is 1800.
4. Track your progress. Cool Running provides a great system for tracking your runs and it’s what I use. But you can also make a spreadsheet which can work just as well.
5. Put on your running gear. When you have your clothes for running on, it’s just much easier to get out there and do it.
6. Run with a partner or running club. Make running a social event by doing it with a friend. It doesn’t always have to be about how fast you can run. Follow these running tips if you do it with someone at a different skill level than you.
7. Talk about your running. Tell people about your running. You spend time doing it, so let people know. They may even start asking you about it. Don’t be too chatty. Some people might find the whole thing boring.
8. Write a blog. Each run can potentially provide new material and your readers will help keep you inspired.
9. Listen to running / juggling podcasts. To keep inspired to run or juggle, you can listen to people talk about it. You’ll hear great tips and inspiring stories that’ll keep you motivated to get running. Try The Final Sprint or Luke Burrage’s Juggling Podcast.
10. Read running / juggling blogs. When you don’t feel like running you might find inspiration in the running progress of other runners. Check out some of the great running blogs on the right column of this blog or look to Complete Running who has a list of 1300 running blogs.
11. Read running / juggling magazines. Just immersing yourself in the topics can keep you thinking about it. And when you think about joggling, you’ll get out and do it. I subscribe to Runner’s World but I also get free copies of Windy City Sports and Chicago Athlete.
Beat Your Busy-ness
You hear it all the time. People say they missed their workouts because they are too “busy”. It’s true, people are just busy. But to keep a joggling streak alive you’ve got to make working out part of what makes you busy. Here are some ways to do that.
12. Workout in the morning. Do you really need to sleep until 7am? Get up and go for a run.
13. Workout in the evening. Ok, you’re not a morning person. So, do your runs right a dusk or at night. It’s usually a lot cooler.
14. Workout at lunchtime. We’ve got a fitness center at work and you can easily run 4-6 miles done over your lunch hour.
15. Plan when you’ll work out. If you’ve got a busy schedule think about when you will do your run. For me it’s meant waking up early, working out after a long trip or going for a run late at night. But when you know when you’re going to run it makes it easier to do.
16. Carry joggling gear with you. You never know when you’ll have a chance to run. If you have your gear you’ll be able to run when you get any chance.
17. Run to your errands. Can’t do a regular run, then put on your running gear and run to the store or bank. There’s no reason to drive everywhere.
18. Make your commute a running one. If you live close enough to work, you can just joggle your way there or back. I work 10 miles from home which makes for a great mid-distance training run.
19. Run home. Where ever you are you might consider running home. It’s the best choice because when you get there you can take a shower.
Torpedo Your Pre and Post Run Tiredness
Running everyday is tiring. You will also occasionally feel incredibly sore. Sometimes you’ll start running and you just won’t feel like moving anymore. Fret not, you can work through these problems.
20. Stretch to reduce soreness. It takes extra time but you really will feel less sore the next day. We’ve written about stretches for joggling before.
21. Soak your legs in cold water. This works after a long or intense run. 10 minutes of cold water today and your legs will thank you tomorrow.
22. Take some Tylenol. It’s a painkiller and it works. Don’t be afraid to use it on occasion.
23. Take a nap. You’re tired after a long run, well give yourself permission to take a nap. It’ll work wonders.
24. Take a shower. This feels invigorating after a long run. It can even help soothe those sore muscles.
25. Drink tea. The caffeine will wake your right up and can provide you just the extra energy you’ll need. And here are 5 more reasons you should drink tea.
26. Eat food right after a run. To combat that tired feeling get yourself something to snack on. It’s ok, you’ve run enough to deserve that candy bar. Here’s a list of the best candy bars for runners.
27. It’s ok if you walk a little. If you get tired during a run, it’s ok if you walk a little. In fact, some running coaches like Jeff Galloway recommend it.
28. Keep the chafing away with Body Glide. Chafing will be a problem for most people. You can keep it away and reduce your pain by using body glide. And check out these tips about how to handle chafing.
There are a bunch of other things that can make running everyday a bit easier.
29. Just get out there. If you’re outside and you’re wearing your running/joggling clothes chances are great that you’ll do that run. It’s only when you’re inside and watching tv that you put your streak in jeopardy.
30. Keep various emergency running shoes. How do you defeat the excuse that you don’t have your workout clothes with you? The only thing you really need are running shoes. Everything else is workable. So, put extra pairs of running shoes everywhere you might need them, in the car, in the office, in your backpack, etc. If you have your shoes, you have no excuses.
31. Carry credit cards or money. You never know when you might feel like going to 7-Eleven or a gas station to pick up a Gatorade or Diet Vanilla Cherry Dr. Pepper.
32. Read while you run. Don’t waste your time just running. Listen to audio books and get a college education while you strengthen your endurance.
33. Wear an identification tag on your shoe. You don’t want to pass out without anyone knowing who you are.
Defeating Mother Nature
The weather is a common excuse for not running. And who could blame you? Running in the cold, the rain, or the heat is not fun. But you can do it.
Have any tips you want to add? Let the rest of the joggling community know about it.