Friday, August 23, 2013

6 Tips to prevent running boerdom

So often I hear from "non-runners" that they don't like to run because it's boring! I honestly have never understood this ad I've found running to be cathartic but as I was out today I got to thinking about boredom and how I keep it at bay during my runs.  Here are my tips:

1. Enjoy the quiet time: For me, having 3 small children at home means being surrounded by noise and chaos.  The time I get alone to run is an a mini vacation for me.  I relish the quiet time and enjoy hearing the sound of my own thoughts and breath again.

2. Get lost in your mind: I like to let my thoughts wander a bit sometimes and reflect on recent interactions I've had, books I've read or even tv programs I've watched and then re-write parts of them or predict what's coming. I've also been known to lose mile to my thoughts just redesigning my house!

3. Solve a problem: It there is a conflict in my life I find that running, like nothing else, can help shed clarity on a solution.  Simply reviewing the situation and then visioning myself with the results I want lets my mind start working as I legs keep pumping.

4. Absorb your surroundings:  This one seems obvious but can pick me up like nothing else.  Since we are normally traveling at 60 mph on 4 wheels, settling down to a 8mph pace really lets you see whats around.  I like watching the deer frolic early in the morning if I'm outside or watching families from the window while they are maneuvering themselves through the parking lot when I'm on a treadmill.

5. Play a game: If I need a little more focus and am struggling I set a point at which to stop running or slow down.  It may be a lamppost or bush somewhere ahead or the end of a particular song in my playlist.  This helps me motor through the doldrums and I often find I can go beyond the arbitrary point that I've picked.  It's also a good way to do speed work.

6. Self visualization: Whether your running in a race, training for a competition or just running for your fitness it can be very helpful to see yourself at the end of this run with the results that you desire.  It may be blazing across the finish line, or in a cute bikini or it may just be visualization of the cool shower and big cup of coffee that you get to enjoy when the run is finished!  Athletes use this all the time to help accomplish their goals, I use it to start my salivary glands!

So the next time someone asks you how you keep from getting bored while running share this list with them.


  1. Great tips. Once I get the ok to start running again, I wil definitely start using these tips. Thanks Nikki

  2. I have actually done all six of these! These six things I think are also great reasons why running is so good for the mind. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Love this! I do just about all of these! I love runs where you look at your garmin and you're a mile in, and then next thing you know you look down to see six miles logged!!

  4. Running has definitely brought me closer to nature. It really does give you the time to just enjoy the moment, which doesn't seem to happen a lot otherwise!

    Miss Adventures in Running

  5. Love this! Running is my "me" time so I get lost in thought, work through some problem I'm facing, or just plain day-dream! Actually I've done every single thing you've listed haha

  6. Great advice! When I first started running, I really struggled with feeling like the miles dragged on and on. But the more that I run, I've learned to really enjoy the miles. I try to remember that I am lucky to be able to run, so instead of wishing the miles away I choose to enjoy them. Your tips definitely help with that!

  7. All of these are great and have used all of them on one run or another.

    For me the biggest thing is probably “being in the moment” and running allows me to do that (especially in a tough and/or long run).. actually my toughest and longest runs (especially ultras) take me to a place inside that is hard to get to otherwise. The exertion sort of strips down the interior barriers and pretense and gets me closer in touch with myself.

    I totally agree with you on the “peace” that running can allow… it is the main reason why I almost never run with music. I always say that I have enough “chatter” at work and I like the peace of quiet!

    I have to admit though.. I think I do understand why many non runners (or those that tried to become a runner but gave up before they got comfortable) think that running is boring. I think when you are just starting out (and can’t run a mile without having to walk), it is so much of a struggle just to “run” that you are concentrating on trying to do it (and how much fun you “aren’t” having) that you aren’t in that place where you can relax, get into the zone and allow running to be the release that it can be (and not boring).

    I have often said that the hardest part of running is getting to the point where you can run 3 miles straight.. because it can be such a struggle and frustrating up to that point.

    I found you on Friday Linkup and so glad that I did!

    Great Post!