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Getting back to running after winter

With winter beginning to fade away, it's time for those runners who have been hibernating during the colder months to dust off their shoes and get back to pounding the pavement. For most, the first few runs back can be the hardest, so to help, here are a few tips to get you back up to speed faster.

 

Incentives. Mind-games. Motivation. Whatever it takes to get you back out running after time off is worth it. With summer around the corner and warmer temperatures already now, it’s the time to forget the excuses and get out there running. Below are some of the most proven-to-work ways to want to get back out there and turn that first run back (the hardest run of them all) into a habit. Read them all, choose the ones you think will work for you and get going.

    

 

1. New goals.

Just like making a resolution on New Years, setting yourself a new challenge for a new running season can be the perfect start and reason to get running (if only for the first few months). Research has shown people who track their goals are more likely to stick with them, as are those who make their objectives public. An easy way to do it is look at your times or distances before you took winter off, and choose one to focus on, such as a new personal best for 10 km. Then, post your goal time on a runner’s platform like Strava (join our club here) to make it public. With that goal set, you have something to aim for and now every run you do will get you closer to achieving it.

  

If new times or distances aren’t really your thing, signing up for a race can be just as motivating. Or you can find an event online. Just ask a friend to sign up too and you'll have motivation plus accountability – a recipe for success we reckon.

             

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2. New gear. 

Another great place to start after winter has worn away is making sure your running gear is all up to scratch. If your shoes are looking a little worse for wear than when winter started, or if your gear looks too outdated, updating your look could be what you need for a fresh start. Studies have shown that performance can be improved simply if you feel you look the part, so use this to your advantage and create extra incentive to head back out there (after all, you want to see just what these new pairs of shoes can do). To see what’s new that you may have missed when it comes to running gear, head over to our shoe finder to see what might appeal to you.

      

 

3. Running partner. 

Having someone head out with you can be another great incentive to find your running feet after winter. With someone to support and hold you accountable to run when you say you will, you can quickly make running part of your schedule as well as a great chance to socialize and catch up. 

   

4. Music.

Your gear is on and you’re out the door, but transitioning from walking to running after your winter break is proving harder than you think. To help you find your run rhythm, listening to music can be the best way to speed up that walk and get your legs pumping, then pounding, that pavement. 

      

 

5. The first run. 

20 minutes is all you need for that first run to be done. Once it’s finished, experts say you should note down all the details from that first run back. Your time, your heart rate, distance and how you felt (many run apps let you write a note next to your run data). Doing this gives you a foundation to build upon, so that the next time you run, you can compare it to this first run’s data. You should see an improvement across the board when you head out next time and this should give you the motivation you need to continue to head out there and realize how quickly you can get back to the level you were at before your break, and run on towards your goals (and summer).

    

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The time (is now). 

It’s all on you from here. The reasons to run far outweigh any that could keep you on the sidelines, and now that the weather is right, “the run” should be calling to you.   

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