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How to get motivated after a day off

I don’t know about my fellow jogglers and marathon runners, but there are days when I just don’t get a chance to run. The reason is never that I don’t feel like running, it’s just that I don’t always arrange my schedule to ensure that I run. It’s always tough to get back in the swing of things, especially after a couple of days off. This week I did run on Monday (too tired) and on Tuesday (no time). Had a pretty decent 6 mile run yesterday but according to my schedule I’m already 18 miles behind for the week! Yikes.

So here are some tips for re-motivating yourself to run after a few days (or months) off.

1. Warm up with something other than running. When your legs don’t feel like moving, start off with with a non-running activity. For a joggler, juggling is a great warm-up. You can spend 20 minutes of pure juggling fun learning new tricks, trying new challenges and entertaining the people in your fitness center. After getting your heart going and stretching your legs, you’ll find that you’re attitude about running has changed completely. For non-runners you might try some weight lifting, basketball, volleyball, or even table tennis.

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2. Change into your workout clothes. To be a runner, you should look like a runner. You’ll never get out and do your workout if you don’t change into your workout clothes. Even if you don’t feel like working out, put on those shorts & Cool Max t-shirt. Pickup those juggling bean bags . Walk around in your outfit for a few minutes. You’ll start to feel like a joggler and be off on your run in no time.

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3. Schedule your work-out session. Nothing motivates like a schedule. I’ve put together a spreadsheet listing all the workouts that I plan to do. If you’ve missed a day, just cross it off and do your training for the current day. Trying to go back is de-motivating.

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4. Eat something. Research has shown that eating a little can raise your blood sugar, increase your energy and thus your motivation. Eating something 15 to 30 minutes before you workout will give you the motivating energy you need. You might consider one of the great candy bars reviewed the other day.

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5. Load up your IPod with new audio. Bored with all the same songs? Refresh your IPod (or other MP3 player) with all new songs. And if music isn’t working for you, try out some of the great, free podcasts that are available. Listening to talk shows is an excellent way to spend a really long run. Great news, Skepticality just came back!

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6. Engage in positive self-talk. Tell yourself you want to run. Imagine yourself joggling down the road. In your mind’s eye, see the crowd’s cheering for the joggler as you go by. Now get out there and go. For more see this previous entry on positive thinking

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7. Be who you are. Runners run, jugglers juggle, and jogglers joggle. You’ve put in the time. You’ve done the work. Keep it up. You are a joggler. Now get out there and joggle! (Or run if that’s what you do). If you need some more inspiration, check out what Dean Karnazes is up to.

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Hopefully, by following these tips you’ll be back on your training schedule ready to break a joggling world record.

This Post Has 7 Comments
  1. The Tiberias marathon is a regular marathon. But all the marathons that I do are “regular” marathons. I just do them joggling while everyone else is running. To be considerate I run off to the side. Nothing would be worse than dropping a bean bag and having a fellow runner twist an ankle. Some have suggested that you contact the race administrators to tell them that you are joggling, but generally I don’t do this. My motto is “It’s easier to ask forgiveness than permission.” If you’d like to get some press about the topic however, you should talk to the race organizers. They can be quite helpful.

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