Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Enjoy Your Run

We've all been there. Out on a run that makes you question why the hell you do this.

A run that hurts physically or mentally.
A run when your body or mind just isn't feeling it.
A run that's a struggle to put one foot in front of the other.
A run that just doesn't go as planned or as you hoped.

"Find a way to enjoy parts of every run. Most of your runs should be mostly enjoyable."
~Jeff Galloway

I love this quotation so much! But it got me thinking, How can I make most of my runs mostly enjoyable?


It's such a simple thing, but it can make such a huge difference. Just ask Karen, who experienced first hand the power of smiling during her first marathon. Smiling can help to change your perspective and attitude. It just makes you feel better.

Be friendly.

Smile and wave to the other runners on your route. Shout out some encouragement.

Open your eyes.

Whether you're hitting a trail or pounding the pavement, there is beauty all around you. Find friends in the clouds, the trees, the buildings. Marvel at the things you see as you run.

Listen to your body.

Some days your body wants to be pushed. Some days it's going to want to take it easy. Learn to recognize the difference and listen to what it's telling you - even if it goes against your training plan.

Make a kick-ass playlist.

I don't always listen to music when I run, but every now and again, I grab my headphones and rock out to some music. The right music can encourage you and push you through a tough run (just remember, safety first). It can help you smile and shift your focus away from the things that might not be going your way.

Take a break.

Feeling down mid-run? Pause and push the rest button. Change your pace. Run like Phoebe!


Skip like a kid. Take a breather. Switch to intervals. Shake off the bad and just have fun with the run.

Mix it up.

Change your route. Throw in some Fartleks, or vary your distances, pace, types of runs (tempo, easy, etc). Run with a friend. Join a running group.

I think that we runners can get too focused on the next race or the next goal. Sometimes, we just have to let it all go. Forget all the pressure and just have fun!

I don't mean to suggest not having goals. Goals are so important and can provide the motivation we need to get out there, but we shouldn't beat ourselves up when a run doesn't feel quite right, or when we fail to meet a particular goal we had in mind.

What makes your run the most enjoyable?

I'm linking up with Marcia for Tuesdays on the Run. This week's topic was Best running book (or cookbook) you read this year, but since I didn't really read anything this year, I opted for my own running topic. Be sure to pop over to the link-up for some reading inspiration!

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  1. Skipping is so underrated! I was doing a long trail run and it was just taking its toll on all of us... so we turned around and ran backwards. It was so much fun to just mess around a bit!

    1. Exactly! Though, I think that running backwards on a trail sounds pretty scary. LOL. Running should be fun and sometimes we just need to "mess around a bit."

  2. Really great tips. I am big on using music to motivate me on a run but more than anything I love being able to take in my surroundings.

    1. Right?! Sometimes I can just get lost in the scenery - even when I'm running the same old street with the same old buildings.

  3. I agree that it's so easy to get so caught up in chasing PRs, that sometimes we turn something we love into something we dread.

    That's why I like an off season -- a time to just run and remember why I started running in the first place!

    These are all great tips. It's amazing how much a smile can change your mood!

    1. Smiling is amazing! I've been playing around with it on my past few runs and it just makes me laugh, which is probably something I should have included on this list as well.

  4. I love this topic! There were plenty of runs this year that I was just not that into. These are great tips.

    1. Thanks, Marcia! Sometimes we need to remind ourselves that at least parts of every run should be enjoyable.

  5. These are great tips. I have to remember the take a break and do something when half way through a run I hate every part of it. Thanks!

    1. Absolutely! I forget this sometimes, but it's a great little trick.

  6. I find mixing things up really important. I can get bored so sometimes I run the route one way, then loop back. sometimes I make up stories about people I see. I also like to read tshirts to see which races people have run.

    1. Making up stories about people is a great idea! I like to check out people's shirts, too. Lol.

  7. Love this :)
    Smiling definitely helps me on my tough runs 😃👍🏻

  8. Ha ha. I like -- run like phoebe --- I forgot about that! Lol