When it’s cold outside with snow and ice on the ground, the thought of going out for a run might not excite you all that much. While it’s OK to miss a run every now and then, it’s important to stick to your training schedule, and you can’t let your reluctance to go outside stop you from running. Most of the time, the hardest part of any winter run is convincing yourself to go, and once you’re outside and moving, you’re usually happy with your decision. If you struggle to find motivation to train, here are seven tips to help talk yourself out the door this winter.
Lay your clothes out the night before
This tip is mainly for morning runners. It’s hard enough to convince yourself to wake up and leave your warm bed to head out into the cold, but adding the extra step of collecting the various parts of your running outfit will make getting up even more difficult. It doesn’t sound like much, but this can be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. Do yourself a favour and lay your clothes out the night before. This way, you can get up, change and be on your way before your brain has the chance to talk you out of going for the run.
Have a plan
Even if it’s an easy day, make sure you have a plan for your run. Know where you’re going and for how long. This will help you feel fully prepared for the run, which can make it easier to convince yourself to lace up and head outside.
Get a good listening lineup
Whether you like listening to music or podcasts while you run, make sure you have a good lineup of either ready for your next workout. Prepare a playlist to help get you amped up and excited to work or download a podcast to distract your brain. It’s even better if you start listening as you get ready to go out. This will help get you in the right mindset for the run, and you’ll be in the zone before you even head out the door.
Promise yourself a post-run cup of coffee, Netflix session or anything else before you leave. Giving yourself something to look forward to will make it easier to not just start the run but see it through to the finish line. Then, once you’re done, you get the reward you’ve been waiting for.
Make it a group effort
Right now you can’t run with other people, but you can still hold each other accountable. Have a plan to run on the same day as your running buddies and check in with one another after your sessions. Keeping a tally of who has run the most and the farthest will make even your easy days a fun competition.
Put your alarm across the room
Again for you morning runners, set your alarm and then place it somewhere out of reach from your bed. If you do this, when your alarm rings, you’ll have to get up to shut it off. Once you’re up and moving, it’ll be way easier to stay up, and at that point, you might as well get dressed and go for your workout.
As runners, we love personal challenges. With that in mind, challenge yourself to not miss a run all month (or longer). This change from “I have a run on my schedule today” to “I have a streak to keep alive” can work wonders and fuel your competitive side. You won’t want to let yourself down, and even if you aren’t excited to run, it’ll be pretty tough to skip your session.