Having a great endeavor of caring for their body, runners design for themselves a quotidian routine to maintain their determination and motivation. Such routine establishes some habits that are second nature to runners and assist them in setting and achieving their goals.
The habits listed below are the mutual behaviors of the most motivated runners. They don’t have to be the fastest ones, which are practiced on a daily basis. Follow those habits strictly to become an athlete full of motivation, happiness, and fitness.
20 Habits of Highly Motivated Runners
1. Set various types of goals.
It goes without saying how important goal setting for runners is. But, to take full advantage of it, I truly believe that you should set different goal types for you to stay motivated and avoid distraction. Here are some major types of targets that need setting:
- Life (long term) performance goals
You may call it a “lifer” because it is the ultimate, running, and life-long goal you should set, as significant as your running for crown and jewel. The exemplary goals of this type may include finishing a marathon, taking part in the Boston marathon or even winning an exceptionally long trail race.
- Annual performance goals
These are some medium goals that help you lay the groundwork for a lifer achievement. For example, you can aim at clocking a 15-minute in a 5K race in July or finishing a marathon in your locality in 3 hours and a half at most.
- Short terms goals
Such goals should be set specifically to a daily or weekly task that must be fulfilled to achieve your longer term goals above. As a rule of thumb, you can set short-range goals in a period of 1-4 weeks in accordance with your practice cycle, such as running every weekend or taking 2 speeding sessions weekly.
2. Become a Morning Runner
Everything happens for a reason, so does the love of early-morning running. People prefer running in the early morning to enjoy the various benefits that it brings about. Such a cool start for your day not only makes you fresh (happy and relaxed, too) as a daisy but also sends you into a sense of accomplishment.
More importantly, doing a morning exercise gives you time and space for contemplating, thinking and planning instead of just rushing into things. This additional preparation also boosts your effectiveness in achieving goals.
3. Eat your veggies.
Being a low-calorie and greatly nutritious food, vegetables are no doubt the backbone of every diet for runners. Veggies’ fertile source of carbs helps maintain your stamina during your running while their antioxidants help you recover after running.
Veggies not only benefit your running but do wonders for your entire health as well. Thus, make sure to have enough vegetables in your every meal.
4. Warm up, stretch, and use a foam roll.
To loosen your muscles and keep the risk of injuries at the lowest level, remember to do a warm-up and a stretch before you start running. When you stretch your body energetically, it will be prepared for excessive activities such as running, especially after your all-day stationary position. Because your muscle groups are already stretched by the repeating movements while running, you definitely want to return them to normal by doing some still stretches.
Last but not least, when you finish running, use a foam cloth to loosen the tissue and relieve pains of muscles, which a single stretch cannot do for you.
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5. Rely on home cooking
Foods served in restaurants or fast foods are normally high in sodium, fat and added sugars, so they are not good for your health. Such foods are not at all your option, especially when you are an intense runner and you want a meal to power your body, enhance your speed and build.
However, as you make your home-cooked meals, you will be able to create tasty, healthy and also suitable dishes for your body. What's more, home cooking will save your budget over time. And one thing, you have to agree with me is that it is very hygienic.
6. Wear your sunscreen.
It's quintessential that you put on sunscreen every time you do a distant and outdoor run. Scientifically proved, outdoor athletes are put at risk more often than other runner types. So, make sure you wear a sunscreen which has good sun protection factor and is also able to resist sweat and water.
Well, one more thing to remember if you are a frequent outdoor runner is to check regularly whether moles or spots appear on your skin.
7. They track their progress with fitness trackers
Wearing a gadget to keep track of your fitness during the running time is also a very useful habit of motivated athletes. The fitness tracker helps you oversee your ongoing progress so that you can establish and achieve bigger goals. As shown by the up-to-date fitness trackers ratings, some gadgets also watch over your blood pressure as well as your sleep and a number of burnt calories during your running session. I am sure with you that such equipment is definitely useful.
8. Eat breakfast.
While our body can store glycogen (a substance that generates energy) for 6-7 hours only, the last meal we had yesterday was more than 8 hours ago, thus it is a common sight you wake up with energy depleted.
To fill up the energy levels, you should eat breakfast. Additionally, according to recent studies, people who have morning meal everyday tend to weigh less. At the beginning, your breakfast may include some fruits and Greek yogurt. Then, when your stomach permits, you should have a meal containing 1/2 produce, 1/4 of whole grains and another 1/4 of legumes or fleshy meat.
9. Get enough sleep
You need to sleep at least 7 hours per night at least. This means that you have to go to bed at around 10 p.m. The sleepy or tired condition is not good for your health in the long-term. And absolutely you can realize that you feel better as you have a sound sleep.
10. Sit less
One person usually spends an average of 10 hours a day on sitting. This is not good for your body, but most people do not realize. Sitting too much makes it easy for you to have injuries while you are running.
When you sit, your posture lowers; there is a tightening of the flexors and the hamstrings. These things will cause an injury for you.
If you have a job which requires you to sit too much, remember to have a short break. During this time, you should stand up, walk, as well as practice some slight exercises. If you want something to remind you, the activity monitor is a good choice.
11. Enjoy the process
The highly motivated runners tend to enjoy the training, together with the competing process. Although the races seem to be a weekly or monthly culmination, in fact, this process never comes to an end.
Like the expression of breaking your limits during your training or race, it is not difficult to enjoy your process. Let’s enjoy the time you are together with the training partners or someone who give you the motivation to improve. Do not feel so bad if you have a bad workout or race. Remember that the process of training is ongoing and you need to find the enjoyment when you are running. Today is the toughest day for you, but tomorrow must be better.
12. Value consistency
Doing something consistently is one of the best ways which improve yourself in any fields. It seems to be easy, right? Yes, but it is not easy for you to conduct this thing. You have to train every day.
Doing consistently does not mean you practice on the regular basis (although this is valued very much). Consistency means that you have to create habits for your process. Regardless of being fit or out of shape, with the help of the consistency, you can eliminate the excuses to improve the fitness, enhance your enjoyment and run much more effectively.
Create the weekly routine and follow it. Remember to spend time on some injury prevention exercises which help you limit the injuries. Success will absolutely come to you if you practice hard day after day.
13. Run at a few different speeds
Maybe you do not take part in a race and want to be the fastest one, do not maintain one speed. Sometimes of a week, let’s get out of the comfortable feeling. Practice various workouts which are at different speeds, as well as the intensities.
As a result, running through different terrains with different intensities and speeds, you can feel the new enjoyment and can get out of the monotony of daily practice. This also helps you avoid the injuries and you will become a more effective runner.
14. Take their recovery seriously
Runners do not like talking about the downtime training which is quite boring and frankly. Most effective runners recover so seriously like they are training or in the race.
In addition to hard training days, you also have to need the days off to reduce the mileage and keep sleeping enough. Some super athletes who you can find everywhere always have the adequate recoveries. They rest or do anything which helps them to be ready for the next hard session of training.
15. Focus on quality over quantity
Practice a lot is not bad, but it is not sure you will be improved.
First, you need to see the history of your own training process and determine the right quantity and quality. The amount will be different among the different runners. Let’s remember that: do not focus on miles, let’s your miles count.
16. Recognize and celebrate your achievements – no matter how small
Most effective runners are able to recognize and celebrate every mile they run in a day, although some practice is very small. They often smile satisfactorily after the long run in the bad weather. They do not undervalue the accomplishments they have reached. Each time you reach the running line, whether you are the best or you do not do well as you hope, express the grateful feeling to your performance.
17. Reduce sedentary behaviors
Minimizing the time of sitting too long is also important for you. You should have a rest after a long time of sitting by small breaks.
Stand up and go somewhere after sitting in front of computers too long. You should spend around 30 minutes on this.
18. Have a support system
You will find it difficult to create the habits alone. They also require the nurture, accountability, and support from something or someone.
There are always many people behind the highly motivated runners. Their friends, their family give them the support before the major training process. In addition, they also often meet their partners during the training. This also enhances their inspiration.
There is no need to be shameful if you need to lean on others.
19. Believe in themselves
Most effective runners are not complacent. They always practice hard to improve the ability and tend to their goals. Maybe sometimes they will fall into the halfheartedly training and they do not practice at all. This will bring them to the started point. And the effective runners are not happy to stay.
20. Quit letting effective runners pass you by
Sometimes when there is someone who passes you in the race, you immediately want to practice much harder. That is called inspiration, the pride or the motivation. But this initial feeling will fade, along with this motivation.
Let’s find the weaknesses of your own ability, and practice on them. Let’s make the effective habits stronger.