5 Tips to Overcoming Common Running Obstacles
Running is a very effective way to exercise, but the motivation to do so can change in an instance. There are 5 common obstacles that make people want to change their minds about going for a run. The answers may not work for everybody but I’m sure most of you can benefit. Continue reading for the ways to overcome those obstacles.
Obstacle 1: “It’s morning and I’m too sleepy!”
This the time of day that your body temperature is lowest, your heart rate is lowest, and your body is very relaxed and probably not wanting to get out of bed. Also, if during dinner time you eat carbohydrates that digest quickly, like bread, rice, and desserts full of sugar, you will lack the energy to get out of bed due to low blood sugar levels.
OVERCOME IT! Nightly preparation will make it easier to get out of bed the next morning. Eat a meal consisting of carbohydrates that digest slowly (broccoli, lentils, beans, etc.) Also, make sure to get plenty of sleep.
Obstacle 2: “I’m too busy!” or “I’m too hungry!”
This obstacle comes up midday. This is when your melatonin levels are lowest which makes you more energetic. This part of the day typically finds most people at work, so this is the time of day when you try to get as much work done as possible. This also causes a decrease in blood sugar which increases your need to eat something.
OVERCOME IT! Make running a part of your work day. Schedule it on your calendar just as you would a work meeting or a doctor’s appointment. When hunger is a factor, shorten your eating time during your lunch break to 30 minutes leaving you time to get in a quick run.
Obstacle 3: “It’s getting late and I’m tired!”
At the end of a work day, your dopamine levels are low and you become mentally tired which can incorrectly translate into physically tired. You have no energy to do anything, much less go running.
OVERCOME IT! You mustn’t confuse mental tiredness with physical tiredness. Your mind is in need of relaxation, and running is just what you need for that to happen. Don’t allow yourself to physically relax. Re-energize with a snack. As soon as you get home, put on your running gear and head out of the door.
Obstacle 4: “I want to stop running!”
On a run that is longer than usual, the drive to keep going slowly fades. Carbohydrates are no longer being burned for energy, and using fat for energy makes you feel too sluggish to carry on. Or, you could think you have already run far enough.
OVERCOME IT! For longer runs, eat 100 to 200 calories every hour to keep energy stored in your body.
Obstacle 5: “I’ve run, so I’m done!”
After running, blood pressure decreases and blood rushes to your legs. You could start to feel weak making you want to be done with your workout. This means that you skip your cool down which is essential to helping your body to cope after a hard work out.
OVERCOME IT! Slow down during the last couple strides of your run until you end up in a slow walk. After you’ve crossed the finish line, stretch your legs and reenergize with a small snack.
Photo by David Baird