– CANADIAN RUNNING MAGAZINE
On a prolonged break from running? Give this seven-day guide a try to get back on track.
Most of us experience a running break at some point. Motivation dwindles, a few days go by and then all of a sudden, you’re in a not-running rut. It could last for a couple weeks, months, even years but the good thing is that most of us are itching to get back to it. Don’t put it off any longer. If you need a little help easing your way in, that’s fine. We’ve got you covered with this guide for what to do the first week you’re starting to run after a break, to get you adjusted.
Day 1: Read motivation quotes or articles
Just to get you started. There are many lists of motivational running quotes available. Find the thing that’s going to encourage you and have you excited to start running again. It won’t feel like something that you HAVE to do.
Day 2: Go for a baby jog
Just get a feel for running again. Don’t set a distance or pace yet. Just get out to get the hang of things.
Day 3: Buy a new pair of shoes
Getting new gear and especially buying new running shoes is a great source of motivation for most of us. How many times have you bought new athletic apparel and found yourself that much more excited to go for a run? Running is always more exciting when you feel good about yourself.
Day 4: Do a fartlek on one of your favourite routes
Remember that park that you used to run through at least a couple times a week? Swing by it again. Since you might not have the fitness level that you did before, do a walk-run or jog-run depending on how you feel. By doing this, you can decrease the time spent walking or slow jogging until you can comfortably run at your old pace.
Day 5: Go for an easy run that’s a little longer than Day 1
Tack on some distance to the run you did a few days ago. Increasing gradually is crucial to getting back in the swing of things. Don’t get excited and push it on this run or you’re likely to end up with an injury and you’ll be on Running Break #2 way too fast.
Day 6: Do your favourite strengthening moves
Strength is important with running. Runners need a strong core, hips, ankles, etc. Since you’re getting used to running again. Try just a mini strength workoutfor now. It will give you something to build on.
Day 7: Run for a half hour or longer and pick up the pace
Use this as a guide. How long you run for is dependent on your fitness and distances you’ve been doing. If your fitness hasn’t dropped much and you’re able to take on a longer run, do so. But if you’re getting out for just 15-minute runs, don’t increase too much. The idea with this one is to go for a solid run and pick it up a little.