Having to fight my gremlins every time I run

Does anyone else have this problem? Recently I've been finding it a struggle to get out the door. When I was doing C25K, I would get out of bed, put my running clothes on and go for a run - no problem. Since graduation, I've really found it a struggle. I'm still running at least twice a week and have increased my distance to 6.5 - 7.5k but it feels hard. I have to persuade myself to go out and then I have to persuade myself to keep running - every time! And as I'm running, all I can think about is that I need to keep running. Any tips appreciated on how I can make this whole process just feel easier.

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  • The humid weather hasn't helped as it's very draining but many graduates struggle after graduation because the C25K programme was so structured so you're not alone.

    Why don't you cut yourself a bit of slack and run for pleasure and joy rather than for a reason? Mix it up, a few hills, a different route, no music/different music. Just run with no plan and no pre-conceived idea of distance or speed. Run naked (no technology) and just listen to your body. It'll tell you what to do.

    I ran for pure joy for nearly a year after graduation with no plans to run further or faster and had an absolute blast! Try it and it might work for you 🤗

  • What run just for fun?! That's such a crazy idea it might just work 😁

  • That's what I thought to do...just run aimlessly kind of thing thing and enjoy it. Skip and do bursts rather than with a goal.. There's no pressure. It will all improve at its own pace. But, I thought three times a week is minimum to see improvement. Otherwise, for me, it was painful mentally, like Joolez rescribed it.

  • As her Majesty says above😀 Plus do remember you do not have to do a long run every run. I often set of for a ' oh i shall see how I go' and may cover 8k. But equally i pop out for a 'quick 3k' and am happy that I have run even this shorter distance.

  • C25K is motivating because you can see your progress. Post-graduation can seem a little flat.

    You have a number of options to help your motivation:

    1. As IP says, just go out and run and enjoy it.

    2. Vary your runs - one longer, one 30 mins, one "Speed" podcast in a week if you have 3 runs. If just 2 then alternate the longer one and the speed.

    3. Do a Parkrun and set yourself a benchmark, then go back now and then and see if you can repeat or better it.

    4. Sign up for a race so you have something to prepare for.

    5. Follow a bridge to 10K programme or make your own up or create a MyAsics plan for a 5 mile or 10k distance to make up a running schedule. Following a plan and ticking something off when you've done it might work if trying number (1) doesn't.

  • Thanks for the great advice - I should do another park run. I did one right after I graduated and was very slow. I'm much faster now. It would be good to get it measured properly.

  • Don't be afraid of these feelings. You've just emerged from an intense training period, the next challenge is to consolidate. Don't feel under pressure to keep increasing distance/speed. It's okay to run 3k, 4k, to walk-run, to go slow or fast. I find loud music keeps a lot of gremlins away. If all else fails they're notorious for hating crowded places such as parkrun, running clubs or events booked for the near future :)

  • I agree with the others... a few runs for pure joy..just because you can. I loved that after Graduation...:)

    Shake it up a bit, with distances, routes and include some.. "...oh let's see what happens.." runs...or as the lovely Rignold put in a reply... let the run , "...evolve organically".

    I love that expression :)

    So much to try and experiment with after that too... like her majesty, I had a really good time..and I still am :)

  • Well, you don't have to run 6.5- 7.5k, maybe just run to 30mins or to 5k on some days. As said, mix it up!😊

  • After I graduated I put together my own (timed) playlist, but I didn't feel as motivated somehow. With C25K over I felt at a bit of a loose end. I guess I am still not a strong self-motivator!

    So I am now following the Sami Murphy bridge to 10K podcasts - she's not quite as encouraging as Laura, but it's working. I'm on week 3 at the moment and it's amazing how focused I am on running for 17 mins just to earn a 1 minute walk in-between runs!!!!

    Another motivator I have found is to get up and run as early as possible (5:15 yesterday). I lay my running clothes out the night before, don't stop to think about it and just get out there before I can change my mind. I get this tremendous sense of well-being jogging round the countryside (saw a rabbit and a deer yesterday) while most people around me are sleeping.

    Finally, and this one may sound odd, I have found that by focusing on the sound my feet make on the ground, I get into a kind of hypnotic sense of rhythm. It's just me and the road. Brings its own sense of calm even towards the end of the session when I am on the final stretch.

    I'm now up to 8km and overhead my three teenage sons the other day expressing surprise at this (I have never been known for my sportiness!) It was a real boost! Just look back and tell yourself how far you've come; that in itself should spur you on.

    Good luck!

  • Thank you - I will check out the podcast. 8k is fantastic in 3 weeks! Well done you.

  • I find that spoken word podcasts, or a digital audiobook (I borrow from the library) are good when things are going a bit wobbly - you're much less aware of time passing than a series of tracks a few minutes long.

  • Good tip - I'll try that. Thanks

  • My personal recommendation would be one of the + podcasts with Laura, they always buck me up. Speed is particularly good, 25 mins start to finish, but a damn good work out nevertheless. Otherwise, pick you favourite route, and stop and take some pics...

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