Whether you are new to running or returning to running after a break, there are several running barriers which will have to be smashed as you strive to progress. From aching muscles to a consistent schedule, we have come up with ways that can help you get past these running barriers that often stop people from ever forming a strong running routine.
First Run Was Great, But Now It All Hurts
Right after the first run, most feel pretty great. The run can act as an instant mood-booster and muscles probably feel pleasantly stretched. Then comes the next day and all those good feelings disappear in the face of DOMS.
Delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is exactly what it sounds like—muscle soreness that affects you later. However, it can be discouraging to go from feeling fine to the sensation that all your muscles are aching blocks of lead. While there is no surefire way to prevent DOMS, there are several ways you can work through the soreness:
- Hydrate – Dehydration can increase the severity of DOMS, so make sure you are taking in the recommended amount of water—2.7 liters for women and 3.7 liters for men each day.
- Stretch – It may not be incredibly comfortable, but stretching can help alleviate some of the leaden feelings in your muscles. Utilize dynamic stretching pre-run and static stretching post-run.
- Sleep – You body needs rest time to recover properly, so try to set a regular sleep schedule where you can hit the sack for a full 8 hours each night.
Finding Time To Run
It can be difficult to find time to run, especially if you can’t rely on having a consistent schedule. Whether it’s due to work, weather, children or more, we have a couple ways you can overcome this particular running hurdle:
- Get access to a treadmill – A treadmill is a convenient tool when it comes to fitting in your running. With a treadmill in the home, the weather can’t stop you from going on the run, you won’t have to run outside in the dark, and you won’t need a babysitter to look after your kids while you go to the gym to workout. At the very least, having a treadmill in your home can make a running schedule more doable.
- Decide on running frequency – When looking for ways to fit in time to run, you need to decide how often you want to/can run. It seems obvious, but many people jump into running with the idea that they will run every single day. For most people, that isn’t a realistic goal, and this may just be setting them up for disappointment. If you know you have a packed schedule, then budget for three runs a week. You can adjust your schedule later to include more running days.
What To Do When The Run Is Hard
All runners find running difficult at times. Sometimes you’ll struggle to breathe, other times you’ll succumb to boredom. If you find yourself in a joyless running rut, remember:
- Breathing is hard – There are a lot of ways that your breathing can affect the enjoyment of your run. If you find it hard to catch your breath during your runs, slow down. However, if you are experiencing a tightness in your throat and chest even after adjusting your pace, you may need to talk to a doctor to see if you are dealing with exercise-induced asthma or other medical issues.
- Running is boring – No matter the length of your run, there are times when the run itself is just kind of boring. You can spice it up with listening to audiobooks, podcasts, or a rotating list of running playlists. When it comes to NordicTrack treadmills, there is iFit Coach to help pump up your workouts. The excellent personal trainers who have crafted specific workouts for iFit can make every run as engaging as any in-person training session.
- Mix up your routine – Cut back on your long runs and take time to focus on speed training. Incorporating HIIT and different activities into your running routine will increase your cardiovascular abilities, muscle and joint strength, and stamina.
We understand that there are many running barriers you will encounter as you build up your running routine. So, read through our advice carefully to make sure you smash all running barriers you encounter!