Make Running A Habit?
Everyone has time to make running a habit.
The problem is getting into that habit is tough, can be painful, will test and humble you.
Don’t be alarmed or scared by that.
Consider embarking on something so many don’t hold true long enough as a challenge.
There is no person on this planet without ample capability or potential to be a consistent and successful runner.
There is a quote I keep in mind regularly as a reminder to myself when I know I am not giving it my all,
When you want to succeed as badly as you want to breathe, then you will be successful. Some of you love sleep more then you love success. You don’t want it bad, you just kinda want it. I’m telling to today if you want to be successful you are going to have to be willing to give up sleep – Eric Thomas
That quote among others especially from the Holy Scriptures inspire me.
I don’t know where you are in your running career but I hope this post will help inspire you to live up to what you are capable of.
There is a lot of power in knowing someone understands your frustrations and concerns and has had to overcome the same issues.
You could be a veteran like me with over 23 years in the sport or a complete beginner, you have the capability to make running a habit.
I want to leave you with a few key points and they aren’t meant to make you feel good.
They may be a bit blunt but are well intentioned.
Running Can Become Habit
Here are a few tips to keep you motivated
Trained and Untrained
Far too many individuals, veterans and newbies alike, are selling themselves short.
They don’t get the results they are seeking fast enough so either quit or lose interest.
Don’t fall victim to that group.
You are better then that.
We are all on this earth for far too short amount of time not to thoroughly give this our all.
Making running a habit creates momentum and it is never easy in the beginning stages.
It sucks, hurts and will most definitely test you early on in your training but you have to have that momentum to get through those tough days because the majority let go of what they truly are capable of because they do not persist long enough.
I have been training for the past 6 and half years trying to better my 2.19.35 marathon best.
It takes persistence and not losing enthusiasm when you fail to keep at it.
Focus on clean, healthy products to consume and use at home.
There is a big difference between trained and untrained but those individuals who are asking the question,
How can I make running a habit?
How can I become more competitive?
How can I run longer at faster paces and not lose steam?
What makes the Kenyans so good at what they do?
..are the dangerous athletes.
I say that because if you are asking questions in the first place then you are seeking knowledge.
You are not on the side-lines ‘wanting’ to be good at the sport, ‘wanting’ to show interest.
You are a doer, someone who initiates action and seeks out painful environments to better yourself.
The trained have made running look effortless because they have made it an automatic process in their life.
They make it look easy because it has become routine.
It takes approximately 21 days or 3 weeks for a physiological adaptation to occur within the body.
Not a morning person?
Try being forced to get up at 5am every morning for a year.
You will become one.
why are trying so hard to fit in, when you’re born to stand out – Oliver James
The problem is, to put it bluntly, we are all too soft in this country.
We have just about everything we need to be a success yet we still can fall into the trap of Someday.
Someday I will run that time.
Someday I will start a business and escape from cubicle nation
Someday I will buy that red ferrari I saw in the store room
Someday is for people who do not believe in process but have their hearts set on the event (the goal) when it needs to be first placed on the process.
Process is what makes running a habit.
It is what separates wanting from doing.
It is why there are some people in this world who are making far more money then you and I and impacting far more people to create change.
The thinking is different.
It is the opposite of normal.
Process questions authority.
It asks questions people aren’t asking or care to ask.
Why is it I spend the majority of my life at work away from those I love when there are people who go where they want to go, do what they wish to do?
The event is what everybody salivates over yet have zero interest in the process it takes to achieve the same result.
Why are the Kenyans so good?
Is t because they came out of the womb running?
Could it be they are training before the sun comes up while you and I are still sleeping?
Could it be because they train two, sometimes three days a week?
Or could it be they spent an enormous amount of their mileage running at faster paces then we are.
I tell you what I smell…process.
Get away from soft mindset society
We are spoiled rotten in this country. Our worst day is a celebration for someone else who is poor, without health, lonely.
If you have the support of a friend or family member, have a place you can go for motivation, someone to talk to, there is no excuse for you not to be a success in this sport.
You every reason to make running a habit and become more in control of your fitness.
You can still run and feel sexy.
If you feel overwhelmed and don’t feel like you have any momentum then break your training into smaller chunks.
If all you can do is run for 5 minutes a day, do so.
Start somewhere. You are already making moves not enough people choose to make.
We live in an entertainment society. There are more people that know more about reality television then they do about how to live.
I find a lot of times, people don’t feel like they can make running a habit because they don’t have time.
Everybody has time, stop watching f***ing LOST – Gary Vaynerchuk
Why is it so many people don’t have the time they want?
Is it because they have bought into the mainstream idea that the only way to create wealth is to be an employee and work for someone else?
Could it be perhaps someone else has control of how they spend their time?
Why not ask the tough questions?
Anything worth doing is going to take you out of your comfort zone.
If you are fearful of doing something that challenges you like making running a habit, not just a part-time, half-hearted activity, it most often is the the action you should seek out the most.
Free Yourself From Distractions.
You can make running a habit but you also have to free yourself from the distractions that surround us all.
The average American spends over 20 hours a week glued to the tube.
Take that out of the equation altogether, think how much more productive we all could be?
We are taught since middle to school to obey authority and our education system as a whole teaches us to be consumers and to work for someone else.
We are very rarely taught to be producers, to work for ourselves.
Take Ownership For Success
If you are having problems making a habit of running it doesn’t mean you are not capable.
It is tough sometimes, especially for those of us working full-time jobs and those who have other family responsibilities to make it a habit.
If you eat today, you run today. You don’t miss – Dr. Joe Vigil, Exercise Physiologist, Olympic Coach
Keep in mind, one of the best distance runners in the world, Yuki Kawauchi of Japan, works a full-time job (by choice) and owns one of the all-time fastest marathon times ever run, 2.08.14.
Do you think he has super powers, a mental gift that you don’t have?
True, his personal best is superb but he has mastered his work ethic and time management to such an extent that it becomes automatic.
Stop thinking And Work
Make it automatic.
It may not feel automatic early on in your training but the more you persist, the longer you endure the more the more running becomes a habit.
I am sure if you are new to the sport, are overweight or older, it may seem daunting but none of that is an excuse to not see success.
Ed Whitlock of Canada, broke the 3.30 marathon at age 72.
These are not immortal people. They are regular human beings like we all are.
It took me 18 years to break the 2.20.00 marathon barrier.
It has taken me another 6 years of trying to better my 2.19.35 marathon best.
You can’t think too long. If you fail, feel bad for a split second but don’t let it ruin you.
Your memory has to be short-term when it comes to a failed attempt.
What I have learned from other top runners who have made running a habit is that they don’t lose enthusiasm when setbacks get in the way.
What we all must do is constantly think of what we want, envision it in our mind and take action to make it a reality. Our minds are powerful. I certainly learned that well when I ran my best time for the marathon distance.
It was extremely difficult to get into that form of shape but even I had a starting point.
If you would have asked me to hold 5.19 pace for 26.2 miles straight the first week into that training block I would have looked at you like you were crazy.
One mile in 5.19 at that time would have been a task.
If you are running 7.30 pace for your easy runs in the first initial weeks of a training block even one mile at our goal race pace can feel overwhelming at first.
The power comes from weeks, months and years of persistence.
Running becomes a habit when you think long-term and don’t get caught in short-term success.
You have to run one mile at goal pace before you can get to 5K, 10K or 26.2 miles at goal pace.
Here I am out running 5 miles at 7.30 pace sucking wind and 10-months down the line I hold 5.19 pace for 26.2 miles.
To make running a habit you have to…
5. Believe in delayed gratification
There are well-meaning people in this world who have the motivation but it is too short-lived.
Life has its distractions, whether that be in the way of work, television programming that does little to anything for your overall health and financial status, or simply not being that interested.
You have to have the interest and it cannot be short lived.
You can make running a habit but you have to find the purpose for why you are doing it in the first place.
Someone that is overweight may easily become discouraged.
They see someone thinner than they are running effortlessly yet they are out jogging for 20 seconds and having to stop.
What the overweight individual is doing is even more commendable.
The light athlete doesn’t have being overweight in their path but the heavier athlete does.
Our life habits contribute to weight problems but many times this is genetic issues that have been passed on to men and women.
If you are overweight or having issues finding ways to make running a habit, don’t give up.
Break your fitness into segments
I will run 10 minutes total for one week, 2 minutes per day each day for 5 days.
For the experienced athlete this would be nothing but to someone who feels overwhelmed or are out of shape this is a great starting point.
We as athletes sometimes can get revolved around ourselves and tend to forget that there are many people who are struggling.
What is a failure to us may be a complete success to someone else.
Take initial steps to get yourself into the frame of mind where running becomes habit.
You no longer have to question if you will run or not today, you just will.
There is no thought, only action.
It may seem overwhelming now but I promise you, it becomes easier and the fitter you get the more motivated you will become.
There is a lot of power in momentum but you also have to have the courage to keep going.
Far too many athletes and non-athletes alike who are selling themselves short.
I think many of us sell ourselves short on a lot of areas in our lives.
Make Running A Habit
We’ll spend 5 hours a day watching television filled with negative images and stories, exactly what the industry wants, yet won’t spend the same amount of time during the week learning how to break free of the rat race.
Misery loves company and unfortunately, the masses are focusing so much of their time and attention to what the media tells them.
A great piece of advice to share with you is to do your best to focus on the positives.
You are healthy.
You are loved.
Failure is not a dead end but one more way you now know to help you get closer to your goal.
Disregard The Comfort Zone
People gladly accept where they are because it is comfortable.
Anything that challenges that comfort is foreign and should be attacked
For example, I am an associate with a company called Max International.
People will gladly accept being totally miserable at a job they are not passionate about, will willingly spend valuable, priceless time away from loved ones, not truly having leverage of their time but will not even consider an alternative.
We are living as if we are immortal, like we are going to live forever.
We’ll gladly accept a 5 days of work, for 2 days of freedom because it is normal, is comfortable.
It is what everybody else is doing.
Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect. – Mark Twain
Bottom line is this.
You have to make the decision to make running a habit a priority in your life.
You don’t have to be a world-class athlete.
You don’t have to have winning every age group award in every race you compete in as your goal.
Running becomes habit when you have a vision and are willing to make the commitment to see it through.
I had every excuse in the book to say I would not be capable of breaking a goal I had years ago of breaking the 2008 USA Olympic Trials Marathon standard time of 2.22.00.
I failed several times before I achieved it.
I was a 2.43.36 marathoner and had not run remotely close to the time.
What I did own was a hunger to remain consistent, to not follow the short-term mindset I had seen from far too many runners over the years.
There were athletes far more talented than me, but also athletes that got distracted and got caught up with life’s pleasures.
This is normal but just because there are distractions present in our lives doesn’t mean we have to relinquish control, to lose focus.
I am not saying you can’t enjoy life and be a consistent runner because you can but you have to get over the hump the initial stages of fitness can throw at you.
Everyone loves to be comfortable.
Everyone love success
Not so many people like to be challenged
Fewer people like to fail
Less like to be told the truth
Make running a habit. It is a choice you have 100 percent control of.
Those that have made a habit of running have had to deal with the same thoughts, frustrations and concerns you have.
We are no better then you.
Inaction brings excuses, we fall in line with what everyone else is doing.
Action brings you closer to living a lifestyle that is unique, fulfilling and special and it creates an urgency so great that running or any other task you have in mind becomes, indeed, a habit.
There is no more hesitation, only action that the majority have deemed far too painful, uncomfortable.
You are beginning to gain the type of fitness and mindset that you knew you had in you.
The only way to find out is to truly take small steps daily and think long-term, never concede to losing enthusiasm because it doesn’t come fast enough.
I write only when inspiration strikes. Fortunately it strikes every morning at nine o’clock sharp. – W. Somerset Maugham
I know what it feels like to be 20 pounds over race weight.
I, too, have a starting point in my own training build up so please don’t think I am someone with different genetic gifts.
Make Running A Habit
People read or hear that I am a 2.19 marathoner and think I am talented.
What they don’t see is over 23 years of setbacks, small successes, failures and endless amounts of mileage, workouts and attempts to run those types of times.
It has never been easy and I never wanted it that way.
I started rundreamachieve nearly three years ago and I have put the same amount of energy and time into as I have my own training.
To make running a habit you cannot have a part-time mindset.
It has to be full-time and what I mean by that is you are constantly making small steps along the way in order to make running automatic.
You break free of the matrix of following what everyone else is doing where it is safe and secure by challenging yourself to do something different, unique and difficult.
The world loves easy.
World-class results can be achieved by anyone.
If you are working to your full potential meaning you are not allowing any distracted thoughts to enter your mind, putting all of your attention and energy toward this then you will be successful and running a life-long habit.
Th alternative is to live less then what you are capable of.
The brainwashed masses have succumbed to what society tells them they are to be.
Show up for work on time, follow the rule book, never question.
It takes bravery to follow your heart, to not lose enthusiasm for wanting to be fit when you are not currently, to get sidetracked like so many well-meaning, motivated people do at times.
Your job is to live up to your expectations, not what someone else wants for you.
If you are getting the same ho-hum type advice, if you are not happy with your work environment, or pleased with your level of fitness then do exactly what the masses won’t.
Seek alternatives means of earning an income, don’t accept that things are just the way they are and that you have no power to change it.
Believe in delayed gratification.
How long do I want to work to obtain this goal?
Take hold of your time.
If you can honestly say you have control of it and someone else doesn’t then more power to you but most people cannot answer that with a resounding yes and most accept it.
There are champions everywhere, you just have to train them right – Arthur Lydiard, Legendary New Zealand Distance Coach
We were not born to be normal.
The Holy Bible states we were created in God’s image.
You may or may not be a believer but to me, that is a very powerful statement.
Make running a habit, the alternative to not doing so will always be there waiting for you.
Do not cuddle and cherish safety and security.
Get out of your comfort zone.
Attempt harder efforts.
If it is only for a few seconds, so be it.
A few seconds will become a few minutes.
A few minutes will become a half-hour
A half hour will become 20 miles at goal race pace.
Progress forward and live life to the max.