We all have our own individual meaning of success. When we relate this to running it could be one of the following:
- Win a race
- Be consistent with your training
- Have a training plan to follow
- Work towards goals
- Participate in an event
- Run your first (insert race distance here)
- ENJOY the sport
- Have a healthy balance within all aspects of life
- Be healthier and perhaps lose weight
It soon becomes clear that the above list could go on for much longer . It is subjective to the person reading and answering the question, ‘What defines your success in running?’.
Regardless of what you define as success, it will have to come with some hard work and a ‘can do attitude’.
I have come up with some tips to hopefully help you get on the road to achieving your running goal(s). Follow these tips and you could quite possibly find that you are much more successful than what you thought you could ever be.
Enjoy it: Quite possibly the most important one on the list. If you do not enjoy what you are doing, chances are success will not follow. Enjoyment can soon leads to passion and success comes from passion (this is my opinion).
Set a realistic goal: Just started running? perhaps winning the Northburn 100miler is not the most realistic goal in the near future (I could be wrong!) It’s easy to get excited and start being overly ambitious, trust me I know, I always do this and have to bring myself back down to earth. The reality may be that you set some smaller goals along the way to achieve your ultimate goal and put in some hard work.
Be patient: Chill out young grasshopper! You are not going to become the next Sage Canaday in a weeks worth of training. It takes TIME and you have to be patient! Do your time and keep chipping away at it. Professional runners have spent the vast majority of their life building up to their running status! It is not easy, otherwise everyone would be doing it!
Have balance: Spend some time with your loved ones, change up the conversation from running to something else once in awhile. Go watch a movie or engage in some other activities that are not running related! There is a another world out there. I am lucky that my wife has been so patient with me! It took me awhile to realise that there is more to life then analysing my pace and asking her what she thought of it!
Become disciplined: As mentioned in an earlier blog, having discipline is what achieves your goal – not motivation. Motivation merely starts the process (once again this is just my opinion). You need discipline to get yourself out of bed in the morning and into your running shoes. It may be cold outside, it may be raining, it may be to windy. Sometimes you just have to ‘Shut up and run’.
Consistency: You need to put in the time. Stick to the plan! Consistency aligns with discipline and how much you want to achieve your goal.
Learn for yourself: Sometimes the best lesson learnt is from your own personal experience. Each of us have our own ways and methods that work for us. Sometimes you need to give it ago and then analyse what worked for you and what did not.
Listen to your Coach: Sometimes certain training runs within the week are meant to be easy or at a certain target intensity. They are there for a reason. Remember in order to improve, you need to allow your body to adapt and recover!
Be open to new ideas: You may not have to conform but be open to other peoples ideas, training methodologies, tips and points of view. You may find that they work better for you than what you were doing before!
Rest: Have a break! This is physically and mentally so important for you! Avoid over training, injuries, illness and annoying your non running friends!
Be healthy: Eat good foods, hydrate and look after yourself.
Work on your weakness: The only way up is to work on the things dragging you down! If you really struggle with hill climbing then work on it! If your weakness is that you do not stick to a training plan then work on it! Be honest with yourself.
Shut Up And Run Coach, Leroy de Beer is an ultra marathon, marathon and half marathon coach specialising in beginner to semi competitive athletes.