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6 Ways to Stick to Your Running Resolution!

New Year’s Day is almost here and I know running resolutions are on your mind! Check out my tips below for setting the running resolution that’s right for you!

1.  Be Committed– Go ahead and sign up for that Spring race!  I’ve learned throughout the years a goal is more attainable when there is a due date.  Some great races in 2014 are (of course) the Race 13.1 series (Greensboro- May 18, Midtown Raleigh- June 7, Fayetteville- September 7, Raleigh- September 20, Winston Salem- October 12).

2.  Be Realistic-  A good half marathon training program is 12 weeks long.  Unless you have been running since the fall and continue through the winter a Spring race is doable.  Otherwise, you may want to consider a Fall race (to avoid injuries).  You want to increase your mileage by 10% each week if you’re starting out at 3 miles.  Make your resolution challenging but realistic so you’re not discouraged three months into the new year.

3.  Be Accountable-  Schedule your weekly runs in advance. You want to try to get at least three runs in per week (two short runs and one long run).  Pencil these in on your weekly calendar!  Run with a friend or join a weekly running group to help keep you on track!  Once you set your running resolution, tell your friends and family about it! That way you’re accountable to the decisions you’re making throughout the year. If you’re tempted to skip a run or give up altogether, they can encourage to keep on going.  I have also found iPhone Apps to be helpful such as “Map My Run” or “My Fitness Pal”.

4.  Be Strong- You can do it!!  Keep your goals closer then your temptations!  No matter what your running resolution is, chances are it will require some level of sacrifice. You’ll have to wake up early, skip your lunch break, get home from work later, or even miss out on the occasional social event to have the time to get that run in.  No one said it would be easy, but it’ll be worth it!

5.  Be Safe-  Try to prevent injuries from occurring in the first place. Use the right gear, warm up your muscles before you start, and take precautions to deal with weather conditions — like staying well hydrated and keeping muscles warm in the cold.

6.  Hire a Coach-  I had to add this one.  As a running coach & personal trainer I will help you with all of the above and more!

Remember, a resolution is supposed to be something that inspires, pushes, and betters you.  I hope these tips help make 2014 an awesome running year for you!

Paula Smith ACE, CPT