Sunday, September 15, 2013

101 Kicks in the Butt (From Runner's World)

I printed out this entire list last night and am going to post myself notes strategically around my house. Here are my favorites (YES! There are LOTS!) ::

1. CREATE A BLOG where you post your daily mileage, then give out the address to your friends and family. Do you really want Aunt Ellen to ask why you skipped your four-miler on Wednesday?

2. MAMA, GET A NEW PAIR OF SHOES There's nothing like those first few runs in a new pair of your favorite training shoes. Buy a pair now, then keep them in the box until you really need help getting out the door.

7. SIGN UP NOW for a winter marathon in a warm state. Every training mile you log takes you closer to that winter getaway in toasty Phoenix, Florida, or Las Vegas.

10. BLAZE A NEW PATH "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds," wrote Ralph Waldo Emerson, who was no doubt referring to some runners' habit of doing the same few loops over and over again. There's a whole world out there. Explore it.

12. EVERY MILE YOU RUN burns roughly 100 calories. Think of that next six-miler as two slices of pizza.

17. PLAY IN THE STREET Skip a dreaded track workout for a fartlek (Swedish for "speed play") session. After 10 minutes of easy jogging, run hard between two telephone poles, then slow down until you pass three. Then see if you can get to the traffic light before it changes, followed by a jog to the next mailbox. There are no set rules, so make it up as you go along.

18. THE PILE OF DISHES in the sink can wait till the sun goes down. Your tempo run can't.

21. THAT NEW RUNNING WATCH you want? Buy it--after timing 10 more speed sessions with your old one.

23. WEAR A PEDOMETER on your run. Distance sounds more impressive in steps. Some tricked-out sports watches also record steps.

24. BUDDY UP There's probably a fellow runner living closer than you think. Introduce yourself to other runners you regularly see, and you might just find yourself a training partner from two streets away.

26. HAVE A DAILY GOAL Scott Jurek, seven-time champion of The Western States 100-Miler, sets goals not just for big races but also for workouts. "Maybe it is a technique goal, maybe a pace goal, maybe a goal of running faster at the end," he says.

27. MAKE A MASSAGE APPOINTMENT for the day after your long run.

31. RUN THROUGH THE RAIN With rain hitting you sideways and the wind whipping your face, you'll feel alive. Just make sure you have a dry pair of shoes for tomorrow.

37. YOU'LL BE WEARING A BATHING SUIT soon, won't you?

39. EXERCISE IMPROVES SEXUAL PERFORMANCE, according to research. Nuff said.

40. IT'S NEVER TOO LATE to salvage your New Year's resolutions.

42. GO EARLY Rather than putting off a run, head out even earlier than usual when you're not in the mood to work out. Waiting for the perfect time to run usually just means more unhelpful mulling.

46. PAY YOURSELF Set a price for attaining a certain weekly mileage goal. When you hit it, pay up. Keep your mileage money in a jar, and once it accumulates, buy yourself that new running jacket you've been ogling.

47. ASK A FRIEND TO BIKE alongside you when your running partner isn't available.


50. TURN THINGS AROUND Poor performances are motivators for most elite runners. Rather than ruminate on an off day, look forward to proving to yourself that you're a better runner than your last showing.

53. FEELING TIRED? Instead of taking the day off, throw some walk breaks into your run. Use the breaks to refuel, stretch out sore muscles, or get inspired by the scenery.

54. HEAD FOR THE HILLS When you need a boost, attack a hill workout. You can't do hills halfhearted.

56. RUN FOR A REASON Do a race for charity. Helping kids with diabetes or women with breast cancer makes it much easier to get out the door.

59. REMEMBER that you almost always feel better after a run than before it.

62. KEEP A LOG A record of your training can help keep you honest. Do you really want to have to put in a "0" on what was supposed to be a running day?

63. MAKE A CONNECTION Instead of bars, go to road races to find potential dates. You already know you have at least one common interest.

64. BRING HOME SOME HARDWARE Okay, so you're not going to win the Chicago Marathon, but that doesn't mean you can't score a trophy. Find a few small local races where you might be able to compete for the top spots in your age group.

65. DON'T EXPECT EVERY DAY TO BE BETTER than the last. Some days will be slower than others, and some days might even hurt a bit. But as long as you're on the road, it's a good day.

66. IF YOU DON'T RUN ROAD RACES, where will you get all your T-shirts?

67. JUST START If the thought of running your full workout is too much to bear, just suit up to run around the block. Chances are, once you're outside, you'll start to feel better and put in at least a few miles.

71. YOU'RE NEVER TOO OLD FOR A GOLD STAR, says Sacramento-area running coach Shauna Schultz. Plan your workouts a week in advance, then place a star sticker on the calendar for each day you meet your goal. "Visualizing your progress in this manner is very encouraging," Schultz says.

72. THINK YOU DON'T HAVE TIME TO RUN? You can probably make a list longer than this one of things you're wasting time on today. Cut one of them out and get the run in.

73. FOCUS ON THE COMPETITION Think about that runner who seems always to finish right in front of you. If you get out the door today, your next race could be the one where you finish first.

86. BUY A FULL-LENGTH MIRROR and make sure you look in it every day.

90. BUY GARISH RACING SHOES With those on your feet, you'd better be fast.

92. FORGET ABOUT THE BIG PICTURE every now and then. Put away your training manual and your race calendar. Quit overthinking it. Run for today.

96. A HEALTHY RUNNER IS A HAPPY RUNNER As soon as you feel like you might be coming down with something, pamper yourself: Eat more healthfully (think lots of fruits and veggies) and get extra rest. A little prevention today means you won't be debating next week whether you're too sick to run.

97. LISTENING TO YOUR FEET crunch gravel for an hour can erase a day's worth of stress.

98. INVEST IN GOOD GEAR For beginners, this may mean a good pair of running shoes to avoid injuries and technical clothes made of fabric that wicks away moisture and prevents chafing. For others, experimenting with the latest GPS unit or shoe pod can be a fun way to track training progress and stay motivated.

99. BE CREATIVE If the idea of going on your regular four-miler just sinks you further into your recliner, remember that there are other ways to put in some miles--like a pickup game of soccer, flag football, or ultimate Frisbee. A soccer midfielder runs up to six miles in a regulation 90-minute game.

100. DON'T WASTE GOOD TIME Remember the last time you were injured and couldn't run? Remember how more than anything in the world you wanted to go for a run and feel good? Never take for granted the gift of being able to go for a run today.

Courtesy of Runner's World's 101 Kicks in the Butt

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