Couch to 5K
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Enjoying Running

This question appeared on 'The Guardian Running Blog'- Any suggestions from the NHSC25 group?


Going the distance: breaking through the boredom barrier

An appeal from a beginner runner: how did you move from gritted teeth and trudging through a painful three miles to upping the distance – and even enjoying it? Your tips please!

4 Replies

I have a great app called zombies run which is a narrated story whilst you're running. I listen to it and am distracted. I then go just a little further each week. (Literally, I'm running beside a rail track and have run to a signal point then a tunnel.)

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I wouldn't think up upping the distance if I wasn't enjoying it! I would try going slower, listening to good music (or a story... haven't tried that but sounds good). Otherwise, I think I would try to run somewhere I wanted to get to!


Not sure what is really being asked here - is the person suffering from boredom or pain or finding it all an effort?

Running outside and a route that you like helps. I never run the same route consecutively, and don't really plan a route, and go to lots of different places to do it. Not everyone has that luxury though.

Going slower maybe just letting the running happen rather than pushing yourself.

I think listening to something helps (hence NHS C25K podcasts - you don't even have to like the music) - at the moment I am catching up with loads of BBC radio 4 podcasts so I am really thinking about those rather than how far I am going, less aware of time passing than with music tracks.

Best of all is listening to BBC Ouch podcasts (there are 100 now) - funny, informative and a definite disincentive to whining about boredom etc whilst running (although *it* is never 'think yourself lucky'). Running because you can as Oldgirl said here recently.

Oh and accepting that sometimes it isn't that much fun, just something you do. Actually come to think of it, telling yourself you don't have to do this running thing and can do something else can help!


I agree! It mostly isn't much fun but I'm addicted to going out and doing it. The first 5 minutes of every run I'm mentally telling myself I don't want to do this , I want to stop now and go home. I almost believe it most days but by the time I'm finishing the argument 5 mins is up and I'm telling myself it would be daft to stop now I,ve done 5 mins and anyway I don't feel so bad.


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