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When you think about going for a run, does that prospect excite you or fill you with dread? Even if your reaction falls somewhere in between, the more positive a mind-set you can cultivate, the better. Find joy in your runs and you’ll feel motivated to get out next time. Even the most reluctant runner can begin to appreciate the sport more with these four small adjustments.
Get the right gear
If you’re hot, cold, chafed, or blistered, you won’t look forward to your next outing. Invest in tops, shorts or tights, and socks made of sweat-wicking fabric, and add gloves, a hat and a jacket if you live in a cold climate. If your shoes cause problems, head to a running store to get fitted.
Stay under control
Aside from being unpleasant, running too hard can cause late-in-the-run fatigue, delayed recover, and injury. To avoid these issues, take walk breaks early and often. Run 15 to 60 seconds, then walk 15 to 30 seconds. When you feel in control, you bring more confidence to your runs.
Switch it up
Mix up your routes, your running surfaces, and your company (or lack thereof). Listen to music, to podcasts, or (gasp!) to nothing. (You might enjoy the peace and quiet). Take note of which variables make for the best runs, and plan future runs accordingly.
By thinking I have to run later, your run becomes just another chore. But running is a privilege. Not everyone can do it, and there may come a day when you won’t be able to anymore. If today isn’t that day, celebrate it. Think I get to run instead of I have to run to help remember what a gift you’ve been given.
Running Jargon Translated
A midrun sensation of feeling relaxed and positive, likely caused by the endorphins that are released when you exercise. It’s not scientifically proven or guaranteed – some runners claim to get this feeling often, while others say that they’ve never experienced it.