Winter is upon us, the days are shorter and the weather is definitely colder! Whether you train in the morning before work or in the afternoon/evening after work, this will impact your motivation to get out there and run. Here are some tips to stay focused and consistent:
1. Check your plan and know what workout you are going to do. Know what the purpose of the run is so you can focus on why it is important to run. Is it an easy shakeout run to recover from a previous session/prepare you for the next quality session? Is it short, sharp repeats to boost your VO2, or longer sustained efforts to build your Lactate Threshold? Knowing what you are doing and why will help you get out the door.
2. Remind yourself what your goal is. Do you have a big race/FKT attempt/running adventure planned that you are training for? You need to be ready for this and the only way to be so is to engage in consistent, focused training.
3. Lay out your running clothes the night before (or in the morning for the evening). I lay my running clothes on the floor next to my side of the bed so when I wake up to run, they are right there. No avoiding them!!
4. Go to bed early! Sleep is important to your recovery so be sure to get at least 8 hours per night. Set up a bedtime reminder on your phone that turns off notifications at an early hour. Get off screens early and read instead.
5. If you drink coffee, have the coffee machine ready to go, or the coffee pre-prepared.
6. Have your shoes ready by the front door, with your headtorch, gloves, headphones, rain jacket and anything else you need.
7. If it is raining, remind yourself that it may be raining come race/event day and that this is good training. Physically it will help you to know what your clothes/shoes are like in the rain and mentally it toughens you up going out in unpleasant conditions. You can look back on this come race day and know you've done it all before!
8. Wear the correct clothes. We've all heard the saying that there is no such thing as bad weather, only the wrong clothes. And when you are running in the winter this is very true! Wear layers so that is easy to remove those layers when you warm up. Have pockets so you can stash gloves, beanies, caps, etc. Check out the video to see how to tie a rain jacket properly around your waist. All these small things make a difference to your comfort levels!
9. Organise to run with a friend! You are less likely to bail on a friend than yourself!
10. If you don't have a friend to run with due to distance or time, have an accountability buddy you can text. Let each other know your weekly running plans and organise to text each other when starting and finishing your runs so that you keep each other accountable.
11. Training in the dark is excellent training for ultras. Many ultras start and finish in the dark so it is important to know how your headtorch works, what your depth perception is like with artifical light, and how it feels to run with a headtorch. Remember, nothing new race day, and that includes running in the dark!
12. Focus on fun!! Running in the dark can be fun! It gives a new perspective to your runs! Enjoy!!
This blog is where I will share interesting and informative articles related to all aspects of training. If you have any topics you would like covered, email me and I will work on it!