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Variety Is The Spice Of Running
Sometimes runners get hooked on the same running routine. Motivation and joy can languish. Perhaps even more important, you can miss the opportunity to make fitness gains since working out at the same intensity, frequency and duration week after week will preserve, but not improve, your current level of fitness.
Stepping out of your rut will banish the blahs and can give you the added benefit of improvements in strength, stamina and speed. Try these suggestions to spice it up.
Find a new route. If you've been running the roads, find a trail or neighborhood. Drive to a nearby scenic area and plot a course, park and run.
Get a running partner. Check out a local running publication for listings of runners in search of running buddies. Running stores often have bulletin boards to match up runners of similar ability.
Join a running club. If you've had trouble finding the motivation to complete a weekly long run, a running club can keep you moving.
Set a new goal. If you have been running the same pace for years, challenge yourself to shave a little time off over the next few months. Set a new goal when the first is achieved.
Sign up for a race. Try a 10K if you've been running 5K's or vice versa. Half marathons are gaining in popularity and can be a great next step for a 10K runner.
Add some cross training such as cycling, swimming, elliptical trainers, yoga or strength training. Each can challenge muscles in a different way and increase overall fitness without increasing the risk of running injury.
Keep a journal, but don't stop at recording just the specifics of your workout. Jot down notes on mood, ideas that occurred to you on your run, observations and enlightenment. You might discover poetry you didn't know you had.
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