Are you ready to be scolded, molded and shaped in to a better runner?
Sorry, far too many infomercials swimming around in my brain telling me how to lose weight, feel great and be extra fabulous in 2019 by following their program. It starts to turn every great idea in to just another sales pitch and eventually makes me want to sit on the couch in a revolt.
Luckily, I love running too much to stop, no matter their hard core press for a brand new fancy 5 minute workout to boost my bum.
BUT it did make me think of some things that we can take off our ever growing to do lists to make running simpler, more enjoyable and pump you up. Sorry, again, it’s like an ear worm.Running for beginners is often filled with a massive to do list and it gets overwhelming quickly. I get that because I like adding little things to your warm up each week or ways to check your running form.
And of course the longer you’ve been running, the more things you know and suddenly it all just feels like TOO MUCH.
Today we’re going to look at things we can all stop doing. Some of them are going to save you time and some are going to save you some mental anguish.
10 Things Runners Can Stop Doing
Are you ready to slim down your daily to do’s? I don’t promise that these are all easy and that some aren’t cliche, but darn it they all need to be said once again!
1. Apologizing for Being Slow
Pace is the easiest thing to compare with our fellow runners and it’s the main thing that keeps so many of us from running with others. We worry about holding them back or being left behind by a running group. I’m guilty of this one myself! I’m squarely in the middle of the pack, but I know many of my friends are faster so I beg out of runs, even though it’s such a great mood boost to hang with them.
Stop apologizing for your pace!!!!
Now when I run with faster folks, I happily offer them a choice – “let’s meet on your recovery day” or “if you’re feeling good, run ahead and we’ll meet up at the end”. It takes the pressure off both sides and everything is more fun.
2. Getting Too Wrapped up in New Gear
Listen, you know I LOVE all things running, which means I love trying out gear. But at the end of the day, the most expensive gear isn’t going to make you a better runner.
You’ve got to show up day after day, putting in the miles, doing the hip strength, doing speed drills and yes once again I”m going to say doing your warm up!
For at least 5 months, I’d been salivating over the Garmin Fenix because it was just such a dreamy piece of tech and I’d almost convinced myself to lay down $700 when I took a moment to really think it through.
- My very expensive smart phone did a lot of the features it offered
- I now carry that phone for safety
- I don’t show photos of my watch and pace everyday
- That watch isn’t going to make me faster
- I don’t wear a watch 24/7
It didn’t make sense, but I’d let myself get caught up in the social media prestige of having it.
3. Overdoing it with Gels During Training
You’re tackling longer and longer distances, fueling consistently with gels, sports beans, and other little sugar bombs. The package says every 45 minutes, so like a good runner you follow the plan!
But for some reason, you’re gaining weight, your stomach hurts or you’re still not really improving. That’s because you’re over fueling with stuff our body doesn’t always love.
- Runs under an hour don’t need on the run food for fuel. In fact, a lot of runners don’t start thinking about taking in fuel until runs start exceeding two hours (just hydrate well and eat before!).
- If you’re always pushing way above your easy pace, then your body is looking for quick carbs, instead of using your body fat for fuel, which makes you more efficient.
- The sugars found in many gels lead to digestive distress, consider testing some whole food options.
4. Checking the Weather Obsessively Before a Race
Admit it, you’ve spent at least one race fretting for a solid 10 day forecast about what race morning would bring. That’s a massive waste of the mental energy you should be putting towards visualizing a successful race day.
- Train in a variety of conditions, so that you know you can handle it
- Check the weather and plan for a variety of conditions in what you pack (rain gear, cold gear)
- Embrace whatever the weather turns out to be, you can’t control it, you can just be the bad ass who put one foot in front of the other to finish
5. Measuring Success by the Clock Only
Did you have a great run? A great race? Or were they horrific because the pace you saw wasn’t what you wanted?
Despite the fact that we’re making progress, getting stronger, not out of breathe or simply feeling more confident in our bodies, too many runners get caught up in a singular pace goal. The result is when they miss out on that, they feel defeated instead of empowered by everything they’ve achieved.
It’s ok to have speed goals, but remember that’s just a tiny piece of what makes you a runner and one of the few things to determine if it was a good or bad run.Tired of adding things to your to do list?! Here are 10 things runners can stop doing for better results and more fun #running Click To Tweet
6. Relying on Instagrammers to Get you Abs, Speed or Nutrition
Sigh…we used to simply be bombarded with magazine covers telling us how to lose 10lbs in 10 days, now everyone with an Internet connection is an expert. Here’s the problem, just because someone has 6 pack abs or is a really fast runner, doesn’t mean they know how to get you there.
They may have great genetics. They may have 0 certifications. They might get you injured. Just be aware of who you’re putting your trust in.
7. Following a Training Plan that doesn’t feel good for you.
Your friends are crushing it on the Hanson plan, but every time you up the speed work you get injured and spend 2 months on the sidelines. Or maybe you just hate speed workouts, but feel like you must spend time on the track… ya don’t.
There is no one training plan that works for everyone. There are different ways of getting results, so stop trying to force yourself to do what you dislike, running is hard enough already!
Checkout the variety of marathon training programs and my guide to beginner half marathon training, specifically.
8. Hating on Other Workouts
We love to run. We love getting outside. We may not understand the desire to spend an hour inside hefting heavy weights, but there’s no need to be bashing anyone else. There could come a day where you decide you might enjoy hitting the pool or riding a bike and you don’t want to feel like a hypocrite. Plus the more active people we have the better.
This might seem like a silly one to post, but I watch CrossFitters say that running is bad for you and runners say that those heavy weights are bad and yogi’s say that only yoga is good for all sports. It’s all silly.No matter how much we may prefer to run, we all intuitively know there’s a benefit to cross training. I like finding ways to weave it in with short workouts, rather than feeling like I need an hour in the gym.
9. Running Every Single Day
Again, we love to run and it’s good for us. So if 5 runs was working, why not 6, suddenly 7 and we’re doing nothing else. This does work for a few runners, but the vast majority of runners end up injured or completely burn out. Read all about the running streak,I won’t bore you by recapping it all here.
10. Embracing the Busy Life
One of the best things I did for my running and my health was to stop participating in the “I’m so busy” conversations happening everywhere. Suddenly it became a badge of honor to be exhausted and running from event, to workout, to work, to blah, blah, blah.
The conversations don’t make anyone feel better, they make us feel tired and less motivated. It’s not to say that we aren’t busy, but maybe we’re blowing it up a bit and making it harder for us to do things because we’ve mentally exhausted ourselves.
Embrace saying no.
Enjoy making time for your runs.
Don’t glorify busy.
What’s something you should STOP doing for better results?
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