Struggling with Keeping Running

(17 Posts)
PracticalTacticalBrilliance Mon 07-Jun-21 10:51:28

I started running last year by doing the couch to 5K. I really enjoyed it and so kept it up and have been running 3x a week since then.
I have asthma so mainly running to help with that and improve my general fitness levels.

When I did C25K I was doing it alongside my DH and it was nice to have the company - he's very fit but was just doing it so I wasn't running by myself.

I have been doing out by myself since the end of last year as our schedules don't really match up anymore, but I've been finding it very hard to keep running by myself - I have more bad days than good & have to keep stopping a lot.

I thought it was the lack of a plan, so I started doing couch to 10K and got along alright until the last couple of weeks when I just can't keep going. This morning I ran for about 2 minutes, had a couple of fits and starts and then gave up and walked home.

Is this normal? I can't even seem to run 5K anymore, but could do it in 35mins previously. I don't have any injuries and generally really enjoy the running, but just don't seem to have the willpower at the moment, which is making me really frustrated.

OP’s posts: |
Purplewithred Mon 07-Jun-21 10:55:26

"could" or don't want to?

I dont particularly enjoy running but I do know how I feel when I don't run and I hate other exercise even more. So I psych myself up by
- putting running stuff on as soon as I get up, so I know I'm going running and have to run before I can go out etc
- listening to podcasts that help the time go by
- thinking about how I will feel after the run rather than how I'll feel about running
- thinking about how my non-running friends admire me for running (shallow but whatever gets you through)

I can still procrastinate for ages but I know it makes sense.

PracticalTacticalBrilliance Mon 07-Jun-21 11:37:42

I'm sure it's partly a mental thing, because I get up early and get ready and go all very easily.
I'm a morning person so go out early, also helps to avoid lots of people out and about so I'm not in anyone's way and vice versa.

I do really enjoy it and feel so much better in general for doing it, so finding my lack of persistence or inability at the moment really frustrating.

I don't listen to anything while I'm running, which I generally prefer, although may try some music this week to see if it makes a difference if I can get to a park. I don't like not being able to hear people/cars etc as I'm mainly running on the pavement and like to be aware.

OP’s posts: |
Lellochip Mon 07-Jun-21 11:45:01

I hate running and if I'm not with someone else I need to listen to something to drown out the voice inside my head begging me to stop grin Normally listen to music but actually found podcasts quite good for distracting - maybe head to the park and try listening to something. The combination of new scenery and music etc might make a big difference.

GravityFalls Mon 07-Jun-21 11:46:00

I struggle a bit with this, I used to be a good confident runner and having to stop frustrated me.

The trick is to stop comparing yourself - not necessarily to others but to your ideal in your mind! Who cares about your speed, how often you stop, how far you go? Only you. Non-runners are just impressed you went out and runners only care about their own running. So you run one minute and walk the rest - that's one minute more than you would have done sitting at home. You don't need to be a great runner, you don't need to train, you don't even need to keep getting better. All of that is self-imposed. If getting out by itself makes you feel better then that is fine. If you want to walk, walk. You won't get a medal for not stopping.

Monkeytapper Mon 07-Jun-21 11:50:28

I started same as you, C25k then continued running on my own, it was hard to keep motivated but now I have joined a running club and I absolutely love it!

I run once a week with the club and I’ve met 2 ladies who are similar pace to me and we meet up (Buddy up) and do another 2 runs a week. It’s great as we motivate each other and it’s so much fun running with others. I’m getting fitter and I’ve made 2 new friends.

BogRollBOGOF Mon 07-Jun-21 15:54:46

Hopefully parkrun should be back in the next month or so depending on how restrictions ease in the coming weeks. It's a great, low-pressure, social way to run. Turn up, do it at your own pace, and just having peoppe together is very motivating.

My mojo is totally AWOL in the absence of road races and parkrun. I've been running on fumes for a while and it's empty now..The few trail races I've done haven't hit the spot.

My motivation ebbs and flows around races and normally hits a mid-summer lull about now after a long race at the start of June. I find the warmth and humidity hard going. Sometimes accepting a break helps find the fun again.


TheBobJog Mon 07-Jun-21 16:00:42

I'm terrible on my own, I don't do half as well as when I run with the club, or with friends.

Is there a local running club you could join? The group runs might not always fit with your timings, but once you're in you would no doubt find others to run with unofficially

PacifyLulu Mon 07-Jun-21 16:05:21

Change of scene, something to listen to and mix up the running. Try some shorter and faster runs vs longer and slower vs some sprints. Doing the same thing all the time is very hard. Maybe buy a new piece of kit if you can (a new, good pair of running socks motivated for me to get back into it).
And accept that like most things you will have ups and downs with it but the next up will come a lot faster if you just don’t give up.

SingingSands Mon 07-Jun-21 16:19:28

I don't like running on my own, it feels like a chore. I end up listening to my own boring thoughts and doing more walking than running. But team me up with a running buddy or a group and I love it!

I also find listening to novels or podcasts helps massively. Something about listening to voices talking makes it easier to stop my intrusive thoughts from taking over my brain, which happens with music.

PracticalTacticalBrilliance Mon 07-Jun-21 16:30:07

Thanks all! I was looking into Parkrun earlier and thinking it would be fun to do once they're back on, so hopefully there will be one near me. I will also check about the running clubs.

I've got some music ready for my Wednesday run and will head to the park. When I tried to go there last week they were setting up a funfair so not great to run around, but they should be gone now.

I'd definitely like a running buddy, so will see if I can sort something out. Another reason I go early is that I found I can't eat before I run even with a good break between, otherwise I get terrible heartburn and feel very sick, but know that probably doesn't suit everyone.

I do also think it's been quite hot recently, my asthma is very triggered by weather, so when it's too humid it's not great, but I think the main thing is me struggling with the motivation.
Maybe I am just being too hard on myself, last April I couldn't run for 5 seconds without nearly having an asthma attack, so I'm pretty proud of being able to run for longer now.

@PacifyLulu I do have some new trainers waiting, but my current ones aren't done yet, so can't wear them for a bit!

OP’s posts: |
PacifyLulu Mon 07-Jun-21 16:45:24

New trainers are fab - love the bouncy feeling. 😁 how many km do you have left in your old ones? Can you use that to motivate you to get through the old ones as fast as you can?

Make sure you do celebrate the achievements. They won’t all be personal bests.

Sometimesonly Mon 07-Jun-21 16:49:36

Are you always running the same route? I thought I didn't really care but actually if I run the same route I don't find it satisfying! I use Strava to record my runs and find it pathetically motivating when I get a personal best medal!

Biking0077 Mon 07-Jun-21 16:58:02

My running ebs and flows. I hardly run May-Sept as don’t like getting too hot so I cycle instead and just tick over the running with 5-10k once a week. Then I sign up for something over the winter and enjoy running 3x a week. I like listening to RunPod podcast lots of different people some more engaging than others (the early episodes were more run focused v latest celebrity selling something PR). Vary your route, try trail running too as your pace goes all over with walking up muddy hills but I enjoy variety more than PBs these days. Plus it always takes me to the 3k mark to find my rhythm I always feel like stopping between the 1-2k Mark grin so I slow to a trot get over the hump feeling then carry on.

GravityFalls Mon 07-Jun-21 18:50:57

It seems like you’re quite ruled by “shoulds” - like not wearing your new trainers yet - I mean why on earth wouldn’t you just wear something you’ve already bought because you “should” wait for your old ones to fall apart?

Sammysquiz Tue 08-Jun-21 06:45:17

My motivation wavers often too. Have you tried Podcasts or an audio book? Tend to be more absorbing than music (for me anyway) so takes your mind off the running!

Uxori0us Sat 12-Jun-21 04:15:49

Shock the body a little and do something different. get a backpack, stick a little bit of weight in it, pad it out with a pillow/cushion and go for a run.

Nice steady pace, when your heart rate gets high, break into a quick walk until you feel you can run again.

The weight should be away from the body so it doesn't rub or bounce. higher is better smile

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