5 Ways To Keep Running When Life Gets In The Way
As women runners, we’re constantly juggling busy schedules, and regular runs are part of life. But how can we keep to our training goals when life gets hectic?
No matter how busy life gets, we fall into the groove of juggling work, children, partners, families, parents, friends and everything else. And, as female runners, we even manage to get regular training runs, solo runs and club runs into the schedule, too.
We’re pretty good at spinning several plates at once! But what happens when life throws a curveball? Do we need to back off running, come back to it later when life has settled down? Or is it possible to carry on running even when life gets hectic?
Here are 5 ideas to keep your running schedule intact. After all, a healthier, happier you is likely to cope better, recover quicker, and remain resilient!
Recognise any of these life-challenges?
– You have to work late (or you’re self-employed and work overruns)
– Illness in the family (children, partner, parents)
– Emergency pow-wow called by a girlfriend in need
– Let down by childcare
– Travel or transport issues
Here are some ideas to help you cope, and keep on running if possible.
Reduce Your Mileage
If you can keep running during this challenging time, take heart from the knowledge that every little counts. Research shows that – once you’ve hit a certain amount of mileage in your regular training – volume can be reduced by as much as 50% without too much of a detrimental affect in the short term. You can certainly maintain speed and base fitness on a reduced mileage. So, prioritise your key runs, and focus on those.
Make The Intensity Count
Of course, if you have to reduce your running mileage, frequency or volume, you’ll need to make those sessions count. If you can suddenly only run twice or three times a week when you’re used to six runs a week, focus on quality work: the speed work, tempo runs and intervals. Ditch the one-pace pony runs, the recovery runs and even the long runs. Shorter, more intense training will do more for your speed and base fitness in a squeeze.
Run As Your Commute
If time is the issue, can you run as part of your commute? Running home from work can be an effective way to get the miles in, and is often an enjoyable way to wind down and regain some of your lost “me-time”. Running to work is fantastic but of course depends on showering facilities!
Become A Morning Person
We know – you’re already burning the candle at both ends right now. But if your schedule allows, getting up just 45 minutes earlier in the mornings would enable you to get your training run done and dusted before the rest of the day piles in. It may take some getting used to, but starting the morning with something you love, something which is just for you, and something you really want to do, is great for the mind and soul, not just the body.
Maintain What You’ve Got
If time really is against you, just focus on maintaining what you can. This could be a certain pace for a short distance, base fitness, or simply your love for running. It doesn’t matter. They’re your goals, so you hang on to them! During this tough, pressured time, use running as a way to treat yourself – to health, emotional wellbeing, and me-time escape.
And don’t forget, the Running4Women community is here to support you! Running never goes away… it’s always waiting for you!