Friday, May 16, 2014

Friday Five - reasons running works for me

It's time for the Friday Five link up with Mar, Courtney, and Cynthia.

Today's theme is Five Reasons to ....  I've decided to write about five reasons that running works for me.  I've tried to get fit in the past and get involved with being more active but I've always had a hard time keeping the motivation going and it never lasted more than a couple months.  In the past it's mostly been just various things at the gym like the cardio machines and various cardio classes.  It's been different since I started running though.  I'm hopeful that I've found something that will be sustainable for me!

1. Goal oriented motivation. I feel the primary thing that's keeping me motivated with running is the ability to sign up for various races throughout the year and knowing that I have to train to be able to accomplish finishing those races.  I know that the training is not optional  and the fact that I've already paid money for these events makes me determined to do everything in my power to be well trained in order to finish.

2. Easily measured progress.  There was no progress to measure with just using the elliptical or taking step classes at the gym. I love being able to run longer distances, have quicker times, and see all the data from runkeeper.

3. Community! I love that I can run with a group and also have an online community to talk to about running. I love that I have friends that took up running around the same time that I did and that we have another way to socialize now.

Catching up with a friend during the Capital for a Day 5k.

4. Me time.  But I can also go out and run on my own and get some me time out in nature.  I love these solo runs too for the peace they can bring to me.

5. Cost and convenience. I have to say that I used to do yoga at a wonderful studio and I found most of the above there as well. It was easy to measure progress, find both community and me time, and motivate myself through the desire to do more advanced classes.  But I stopped going to the studio because we moved and it was no longer a convenient location. There were also budget concerns with the cost of the classes.  Running can get expensive with the cost of big races, but it doesn't have to be.  There are plenty of local races in this area and most of the races I participate in are very reasonably priced with just 2 big races this year. And even the cost of the big races is comparable to a month of the yoga classes at the studio.

I never thought I would have so many positive things to say about running, but it really does seem to have a great combination of factors that makes it seem like something I can sustain interest in for a long time.  This is even more true because cross training is important to help with the running so I can add in yoga and weight training.  I hope everyone has a great weekend ahead of them!