S for Success. Five Strategies For an Achievable Weekend Long Run.

February 20, 2016 in Exercise, Outdoor Activity, Running

DSC_0014-JBGetting out for a long run on the weekend can sometimes be a challenge. I sometimes find myself dilly-dallying around it, perpetually coming up with other things to do, or just putting it off until ‘later’. To get over these self-imposed stumbling blocks, I have put into place strategies that have helped me achieve successful long runs on the weekends. These strategies have worked for me and maybe they’ll work for you too.

1. Schedule it. I’ve found that if I’m planning to go for a long run on the weekend, I am more likely to follow through on it if I schedule it into my day as opposed to just saying that I’ll go for a run at some point during the day. Prioritizing and scheduling it at a specific time tends to make me stick to it as if it was a regularly scheduled commitment.

2. Set expectations and set a course. I will typically determine how long I want to run or what distance I want to cover in advance of my run. I set realistic expectations based on how much time I have and my current ability. Whether you have a distance goal (5km,10km, 20km, etc.) or a time goal (1.5hrs, 3 hrs, etc.), it’s vitally important to map a route that will cover the distance and/or time you want to achieve. Mapping a route provides direction and helps ensure that you meet your goals for the run. I like to use tools like mapmyrun or gmap-pedometer to plan a route for my runs.

3. Support. I am thankful that I get support from Dawn when it comes to running. I communicate my plans to her in advance (#1 and #2 above) and it helps her schedule and plan her day (and the kids too!) around it. She can also provide support by waking me up and nudging me out of bed if I’m falling behind schedule or simply just encouraging me to get out the door and live up to my commitment. Get support from those around you and let them know about your goals/plans. This helps hold you accountable to them and to yourself to follow through.

4. Sleep. If I’ve scheduled myself for an early morning long run on the weekend, I usually try to go to bed early the night before. Getting a good night’s sleep puts me in a good mood on the following day and gives me the energy I need for my run.

5. Set your alarm. This may sound cruel on a Saturday or Sunday but for me it works, particularly if I’ve gotten enough sleep the night before (#4 above). I like to get my run in early so that it doesn’t cut into family time. It’s important that I get up and not risk sleeping past my scheduled run time. By doing this, I can take solace in the fact that I will get my long run in and still have the rest of the day to spend with the family. That is the best feeling.

There you have it – my five simple strategies that help me get out of the door for my weekend long runs. The only thing left to do is to see it through.

Happy running.

J.

 

 

 

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