Happy Wednesday! It’s getting real —> today is my last full day here in Austin. My bestie lands at noon today, and we are headed to do some last fun stuff here in Texas before we hit the road early in the morning tomorrow! If you want to follow along on our adventures (I hope she doesn’t mind stopping at all the fun roadside attractions and I really want to see the biggest ball of twine), follow me on Instagram!
On to the important topic of the day… getting off the summer running struggle bus — the latest for Running Coaches’ Corner with yours truly, Debbie, Susie and Rachel, where we talk about anything and everything about running. More details at the bottom (and if you blog, information on how you can join us!).
Today I’m talking about that summer running struggle bus. For some of the country, fall temperatures have started to settle in but for others (ahem, Texas), we’re still dealing with the heat and humidity. And when I run in the heat and humidity, I feel like this:
It is the WORST. My pace slows down, I feel so hot and sweaty and I just don’t want to do it. My 20 miler from this weekend is such a good example. I woke up late (7 a.m.) so I knew it was going to be brutal. By time I finished, the temperature was 99*. One degree from 100*. I felt pretty solid the first 10 miles but then the shade started to disappear… and it just got awful. It was more of a mental battle than anything, but it definitely doesn’t make me feel confident for my upcoming marathon (which is why I run so many 20 milers before a race).
Welcome to the summer running struggle bus. It’s far from a joy ride, but it’s one that can be so defeating – making it feel impossible to hit our goal paces or even finish the workouts that we have on our calendar.
Years ago, when I lived in Florida, I would run after work (I KNOW) and die out around mile 2. Most days, I’d be so frustrated that I’d end up in tears and walk the rest of the way home. It was so defeating and discouraging.
Until… I moved to NYC and ran the 2010 NYC Marathon a handful of weeks later and knocked about 10 minutes off my previous marathon time.
It DOES pay off, after a bit of time. But having the vision for that when you’re in the moment – sweaty, feeling like death and legs feeling like lead – can be really tough.
But with fall just around the corner, there’s hope! Good running weather is ALMOST here.
But I get it, after being defeated by the summer heat and humidity, it can be tough to find your motivation.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Go early in the morning.
No, you don’t have to get up at 5 a.m. if you usually don’t. But try getting up a little earlier to squeeze a short run in and get a taste of that fall weather. I find that it always feels the best in the AM (especially down here in Texas when it still warms up to 80s or 90s in the afternoon). Sometimes just getting a chance to experience that awesome brisk weather can make me so excited to get back to running.
2. Sign up for a race!
Yesterday I talked about my upcoming races this fall… and that is one thing that gets me off the summer running struggle bus! I love seeing what races are coming up and figuring out what I can set some goals for. Nothing helps me get my motivation back better than having a few races on the calendar.
3. Hit the trails
When the leaves are changing, there’s a coolness in the air and you can enjoy nature just like you should… nothing is a better! If you can, seek out a local running trail and go for a run in a new area to find your motivation once again. I love being deep in the woods — there’s something about it that helps me reinvigorate my passion for running.
Well, maybe more than just thumbholes. The changing seasons means a changing wardrobe and as silly as it may sound, sometimes having a new piece of clothing to try out on a run is enough to give me my motivation back. Honestly, this is part of the reason I am so excited for Minneapolis running — I have a whole bunch of running clothes that I haven’t been able to run in for a long time, and now I get to every single day for the next few months through fall and winter!
5. Go watchless
This is one of my favorite ways to find running motivation at any point when I’m feeling “meh” about lacing up my shoes. Without the pressure of hitting a particular pace or going a certain distance, and solely running by feel, it brings back the joy of the sport… which I think can easily lost due to the training doldrums or even the weather. Yes, even if you don’t have it on record on your GPS, it still counts as a run!
Are you on the summer running struggle bus? Any other tips that help you get motivated again?
What’s the weather by you? Are you ready for fall/winter?
Follow me on Instagram
Follow me on Twitter
Follow me on Pinterest
Follow me on Facebook