You’re 45 days into your training and you’ve hit a wall. No matter how much you love Pacific Northwest running, walking, hiking, or peddling – it’s normal to get burned out. Slumps commonly occur when you lose your motivation and excitement. Fortunately, there are some easy fixes that can help you get your Pacific Northwest mojo back!
CHANGE THE ROUTE OR ROUTINE – When I hit a recent running slump, I took a long look at what was holding me back from improving. I was literally showing up for my runs and working through the motions – it felt like, “work.” What I realized – I had spent January and half of February running on the treadmill due to a very wet Pacific Northwest winter and lack of light (my workouts start at 5am in the morning). I decided to break the same old same old routine and run outside on my weekends as well as one day a week I choose a different style of cardio activity (elliptical, bike, rowing machine).
DON’T BEAT YOURSELF UP – Highs and lows can be brutal at times, especially when 90% of your Pacific Northwest training days are absolutely difficult. If you’re doing things correctly, all that work will be the payoff for the other 10% of the time on race days. Whatever you do, don’t stop! A slump can be demoralizing, you don’t feel like doing any activity and when you do train, you feel lethargic and tired. The key is to show up – if you can’t give it a 110%, then give it 75%, like Nike says, “Just Do It.”
FIND A RUNNING PARTNER OR CLUB – Nothing can get you through a training slump better than a buddy, or even better, a group of buddies. There is something empowering about having a partner to lean on, and there’s a psychological shift that comes along with joining a club. Along with receiving support from your buddies, there is an opportunity to get coaching advice, as well as gaining a competitive edge. When we train with a buddy that is more skilled, often times it pushes us to compete and work harder.
SIGN UP FOR A NEW RACE OR EVENT – If you keep doing things the same way, you can’t expect a new result. A training slump seems to correlate with complacency. If you want a change, try something outside of your comfort zone. I hear you, “what does that mean, I’m already training?” It means we get used to things, if you run a mile or a 5K or two, and continue to do what you’re comfortable doing, your body already knows what to expect and how it feels. Look at signing up for a Beer Miler or a 10K, or if you’re an avid runner, consider a triathlon – whatever you choose, just pick something new! This creates excitement and a goal to pursue while keeping you accountable for your training. For a list of our 2020 Pacific Northwest events, please visit hoodcanalevents.com/events and we’ll see you on the other side of the slump!