Saturday, August 14, 2010

Getting the Motivation

Well it's 9:30 a.m. on a Saturday morning and I've already done this today...
We averaged 8:40 min/mile for all 12 miles which we were all happy about. (Side note: I run every Saturday morning on the C&O Canal towpath with a running group that formed about three months ago. It consists of me, one other woman who is also running the Western Maryland Half Marathon and two men, one of which is training for an October marathon and the other who still can't understand the notion of paying someone else to run a race when he can run every Saturday for FREE!! He definitely has a point...I seem to wonder the same thing at the starting line of every race that I run. Of course running with so many other people and seeing that finish line at the end seems to make it all worth it!)

As much as I detest waking up at the crack of dawn to run, it is nice to finish early and still have the whole rest of the day to enjoy doing whatever I want (of course after running 12 miles that usually consists of lots of eating and a nap if I get my way!)

I was asked this last week by a friend on ways to stay motivated when starting and maintaining an exercise routine. I listed some of my main motivators in yesterday's blog entry, but here were some of the other ideas that I gave her...

1. Set a goal. I know that I am less apt to skip a workout if I am training for something specific. Make a goal to walk/run a 5K, swim a mile, complete a triathlon or even do 25 push-ups. All of these things will help you to stay on track.

2. Give yourself a reward. I told her to create a chart, much like you would do for a young child, and when you complete 10 planned workouts, give yourself a treat (manicure, new workout shirt, new pair of shoes, etc.) Make it something you really want so it makes you want to get it that much faster!

3. Create a fun play list. Sometimes knowing I have a new play list to listen to on my MP3 player helps to get me out the door on those mornings that I would rather stay in bed. Music can be a great motivator!

4. Find a workout buddy. Knowing that you are responsible to someone else besides yourself always makes you more likely to keep your fitness appointments rather than blow them off. Find someone who is around your same fitness level and try new things together.

Talking Point: How do you keep yourself motivated to workout?

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