Finding Motivation to Run
As a runner, finding motivation to get out the door can be a daily struggle. I remember vividly the first runs I did when I was 19 and just getting started. I knew how many blocks I needed to run in order to do a mile, and every morning, I would drag myself out of bed in my tiny bedroom in the punk house that I shared with nine dudes, often stepping over punks who were camped out in the living room after playing a show in our basement, and in my Sofee gym shorts with the waistband folded over three times and my thrifted tshirts, I would put in one painful mile. I’d walk a chunk of it, I’d run as much as I could, I’d listen to Andrew WK on my iPod Nano. I hated every step, but those are the runs I remember the most fondly, and the most proudly.
That first year of getting those runs in, eventually going a little bit farther, a little bit faster—that was the time when it would have been so easy for my motivation to lapse. To this day, I couldn’t tell you why I did those runs, or exactly what kept me going. Maybe it’s because I’m a sucker for a Rocky-style montage and I wanted that transformation. Maybe I knew that the punk lifestyle was fleeting and I’d have to figure out a next ‘thing’ to find a community in. Maybe somewhere deep down in my DNA, my body knew it wanted to run.
But whatever the reason, it wasn’t ever easy to get out the door.
The actual interaction between my younger sister and I that sparked this:
Now, I’m not saying that my particular video choices will work for everyone. If you don’t love Riverdale, for instance, this one will not work:
But I highly recommend everyone find that 30 second clip that will kick your ass into highly motivated gear. I have zero shame in the fact that mine is cheesy as hell, and I’m not kidding when I say that I’ve watched this clip at the trailhead more than once and at the start of two races this season.
Ultimately, though, the motivation to run comes in the consistency of just getting out there and doing the damn thing. There’s no magic bullet, but the more often you run, the easier it gets. Or, maybe it’s more accurate to say that the more often you run, the harder it is to bail on yourself.
How do you motivate to run? Share your go-to video/song/mantra/whatever in the comments!