Running is a habit that has been proven to have long-term health benefits, especially for those that are able to create a routine and stick with it on a daily basis. However, there are many hurdles that keep people from sticking to the habit, or from starting it at all. The good news is that there are a lot of ways to overcome these common challenges and ultimately become a successful runner.
Make Yourself Comfortable
If you are in pain during your runs, you are not very likely to continue with the habit. You may be able to endure it for a few days, but eventually the pain will catch up to you and you will skip a run, thus breaking the habit you have worked hard to build up. You do not have to put yourself through this frustrating cycle, but should do everything you can to make your runs easier in the beginning. For one, make sure that you have the proper clothing and equipment. A good pair of running shoes, such as New Balance from The Athlete’s Foot, will make your runs infinitely easier. Of course, it is important that you get a shoe that fits your feet properly, and that provides the kind of support that you need for your runs. If you live in a cooler climate, you should also make sure that you are able to stay warm enough on your runs. The cold weather is a hurdle for many people, but being prepared to deal with it can make a huge difference.
Make a Schedule
You are destined to fail at maintaining this habit if you do not have a predetermined space of time set aside for your run. Things will inevitably get in the way if you do not block out time for this important habit. Many find that the best time to run is in the early morning because they are too tired after work, but this too can be difficult to keep up. If you have trouble getting up early, you should do a couple of things the night before to prepare. First, make sure that you set multiple alarms, and that you have to get out of bed to turn them off. Before you go to sleep the night before, take time to mentally prepare for the fact that you want to get up early. Next, place a full glass of water next to your bed, and drink the entire glass immediately after you wake up. Many have found that this helps to prevent them from falling back to sleep.
Make Yourself Accountable
You may not want to tell everyone that you know that you plan to start running, but it is good to have a core group of friends or family members to hold you accountable. Many people find that telling others about their plans helps because they do not want others to see them fail. This will likely work for you too, but be careful not to share this information with too many people. Studies have shown that people actually get satisfaction just from telling people what they plan to do, and that this actually prevents people from making progress since they can just talk about their plans and feel satisfied.