It's Friday! Friday! Gotta get down on Friday! Didn't you miss that song?
Today we're heading off to visit some of my grandmother's family in northern Italy.
Lauren from Running Slowly With Kids has written up a fabulous post for you guys about Spring running! Lauren has hit the nail on the head. I'm currently feeling the spring blues, and plan on jumping into one of her suggestions once I return to the states!
All over Twitter and Facebook, runners are welcoming Spring. I live in Georgia. We've had Spring-like weather since February. Between the pollen and the post-marathon blues, I've been finding it difficult to get out of bed to go for a run. I need some motivation. Some different options to mix things up to get me through the lull before training begins for the Fall.
Perhaps, you ran an early Spring half or full marathon and are pooped. Maybe you've just started running or maybe you just want to work on speed. No matter where you are or where you want to go; this lovely list will get you well on your way.
1. A spring training program
I love training plans. I love knowing how many miles I have to run each week. I get a thrill from completing a run and crossing it off my schedule. I am like a rebel without a cause.
2. Speed training
Fartleks, tempo runs, track workouts. The more you sweat and the harder it is to breathe the better. Personally, I'm a big fan of fartleks and tempo runs. I haven't stepped on a track since high school (bad runner, bad runner!). Get out there and have fun! Listen to upbeat music. Push yourself and you will get faster.
3. Change of Scenery
Have you ever ventured into the woods for that 3 mile run? If not, you should. Trail running is a horse of a different color. It demands your full attention and will thrill the pants right off of you.
If trail running isn't in the cards, why not find a new route? Drive around your town or city and find a new path. Be adventurous, but always safe.
4. Join a running group or find a partner
This is a hard one for me. I am a lone wolf. I enjoy running by myself and using the time to process, pray, and dream. However, I know how supportive and encouraging the running community can be and this might be a good time to embrace it. By the time the Fall race season rolls around, you might have some extra cheerleaders screaming your name on the sidelines.
5. Ditch your watch
Runners can get a little crazy about numbers. Pace, time, heartrate. It might do you some good to just run. Listen to your body. Let it dictate how fast or slow you go.
6. Strength Training
Don't worry; it's not as intimidating as it sounds. When I first started going to the gym (which by the way is on a college campus - nothing like toned 18 year olds to make a girl feel self conscious), I would start on the elliptical and do what I refer to as "non aggressively gym stalking". Basically, I would watch and see what other people were doing before I attempted any of the machines. It took me two weeks and a few weird looks to finally figure it all out. Now, I try to get there 2x a week and I think these little weakling arms are actually getting a little stronger.
7. Fun runs - 5k, 10k
Run a race for fun. Have a friend join you or run with your kids. Dress up. Just enjoy the experience.
8. Volunteer at a local race
This is one of the best ways to get motivated to run. You know what they're going through, what they're feeling, and then suddenly BAM! you want to do it too!
9. Pick up a Book
Similar to volunteering, reading about running makes me want to run. Some good ones are Eat&Run by Scott Jurek and Born to Run by Christopher McDougall. I've also heard good things about Running with the Kenyans by Adharanand Finn.
10. Cross training
I'm terrible about cross training. Absolutely terrible. Don't be like me. Practice yoga, swim, or bike. Do something that makes you happy. Your body will thank you.
Happy Spring Running!