So, what makes running enjoyable for me? I’m glad you asked! Let me see if I can convince you…
- Running is likely not boring for me because I enjoy its’ simplicity. Running, for me, is a time to let go of all issues/problems I’m having – release the stress and just not think. It’s a time to sweat, boost my cardio and have a complete mental break.
- Although I don’t always run with someone, it’s common (more now than ever) that I am running with my other half. Of course, this could never be boring. We push each other, chat and just have an all around good time.
- While I now typically have my running buddy, I didn’t used to. Originally I would run alone. I enjoyed this too! Typically, I would have my headphones in – listening to upbeat, happy, “move-it” music! (Need a playlist? Check out some of my favorite moves here!) Sometimes (back in college) I would have my audio books read to me during my runs.
- Speed Variation. As important as maintaining a semi-consistent pace is to avoid burning out early in a run, variation in speed helps to avoid boredom. In fact, the new popular HIIT workout (high-intensity-interval-training) is just this. An example might be running for 2 minutes at your highest pace, then having 30 seconds of brisk walking.
- Avoid running the same route all the time. Turn down a different street or head in an entirely different direction. Get lost! Changing routes is not only helpful to avoid boredom, it’s also a good way to challenge yourself to varying running terrain.
- Counting footsteps or people or birds or anything. When you’re pushing yourself to the max and you can hardly breathe and you just really want to quit – start counting. Tell yourself that as soon as you can count ten birds or 50 footsteps or anything, then you can have a 20 second walking break. This will help you to push yourself and avoid boredom at the same time!
- Just listen and observe. If you’re not wearing headphones and just running along, you likely will see and hear some pretty interesting things. I know if I run in the evening, I love watching the sky change from sky blue to have shades of pink and purple. People watching (and squirrel watching) is another perk!
I would encourage you to get out there and go for a run or a walk if you are able. It’s such a refreshing activity and it’s SO good for both the mental and physical aspects of you! 🙂