Runners, when does running become enjoyable?



  • wolfchild59
    wolfchild59 Posts: 2,608 Member
    Personally, it never has.

    I've been running for about two years now. I've run a number of races, including two half marathons and I've coached three people through the couch to 5K program.

    I hate running. I dread it every time I have to head out there. I've only kept running this long because I like races. I like the atmosphere and fun of the environment of races. If I could do races without ever running, the world would be a perfect place.

    But I am currently counting down the days to my last scheduled race. I have three more runs and the race and then I'm finally free. I'll have four entire months of not having to run and I can do whatever cardio or strength workouts I want because I won't be in training for anything.

    So if you hate it now, and you've been hating it, it's possible that you will continue to hate it. But I'd bet even money that there is some form of cardio out there that would help your lungs that you would end up loving. So don't be afraid to go find it!
  • bubblygoldfish
    bubblygoldfish Posts: 213 Member
    I started to enjoy it when I got rid of those stupid running shoes with inch-thick outsoles and huge heels (virtually guaranteeing that I heel-strike and end up like everyone else with shin splints and wasted knees) and started running in minimalist running shoes. That day I said goodbye to recurring tendonitis and collapsed arches.

    I started cycling between my Nikes and a pair of five-fingers and have since moved on to Merrell Barefoots and VivoBarefoot Achilles. Now I'm running 10Ks and half-maras completely pain free.

    I agree 100%. yes I know they are not for everyone, but my Barefoot Merrell have made such a difference. Love them!!

    How weird, I am different! I had developed pain in my knee running in "barefoot" shoes. I treated it as "runner's knee", and the pain got better until i started increasing my miles again. I finally switched to more supportive shoes, and I love running now! Plus, i seem to be trail runniing a lot, and the stability shoes prevent me from rolling my ankles in gravel...

    Good luck! Definatley check out a LOCAL running shoe store where they fit you and watch your stride when you test jog. :drinker:
  • sunnybear39
    sunnybear39 Posts: 60 Member
    What isn't clicking with Chi Running? I feel like after I read the book a couple of times and watched some YouTube videos, my running really improved when I tried to incorporate the form he recommends and using a metronome to get my turnover quicker and my pace steadier. When I first started out, my knees were hurting every time. But I never have knee pain anymore and I'm up to around 3-4 miles three times a week.

    I have also started with Chi Running. I have had knee pain, shin splints, calf pain, just plain TIRED legs. I got new shoes fitted at a running store, tried shin exercises, got an x-ray for stress fracture that was negative-
    Then Chi Running was recommended to me by a friend. I'm not saying it is the be- all end all, but now that I am concentrating on my running form and using my core and thinking of running as a "practice" just concentrating on it and the freedom it is giving me while also making sure my whole body- breathing, focus, relaxation, is in place, running became 100 percent more enjoyable. I run further, don't breathe as hard, and am less tired at the end.

    So in my humble opinion here is my two-cents' worth!

    1. Go to a running store that does a pace analysis and make sure you aren't under or over pronating and get good shoes
    2. Explore some running literature that will help you get your whole body working for you so you can relax and enjoy your run.
    3. Walk when you need to- you need to give your body a break and listen to what it is telling you it needs.
    4. Know that running IS hard work for all of us- and that the best part of the run will be at that 5K finish line!

    Good luck to you- I just signed up today for my first 10K so will be training right along with you :)
  • jojojo909090
    jojojo909090 Posts: 205 Member
    I started to enjoy it when I got rid of those stupid running shoes with inch-thick outsoles and huge heels (virtually guaranteeing that I heel-strike and end up like everyone else with shin splints and wasted knees) and started running in minimalist running shoes. That day I said goodbye to recurring tendonitis and collapsed arches.

    I started cycling between my Nikes and a pair of five-fingers and have since moved on to Merrell Barefoots and VivoBarefoot Achilles. Now I'm running 10Ks and half-maras completely pain free.

    Yes to the minimalist shoes - have been injury and pain free since changing to them (although they don't suit everyone). I have Mizuno minimalist shoes and love them - and they changed my enjoyment of running too.

    I've just run my 3rd 10km (was only running 5kms as of 6 weeks ago and have just gone ahead distance-wise in leaps and bounds since then), and it's just such a great feeling and sense of achievement - it's still not 'easy' - but I CAN do it, and with lots of shorter runs in between it's getting easier and easier. Running in my first 10km "event" next weekend :)
  • Cowenlaw1
    Cowenlaw1 Posts: 106 Member
    1. Get a gait analysis done and buy the proper shoes for your gait. It doesn't cost much more, and it really helps. I used to have problems with shin splits, and have had no injuries since I started wearing the right shoes.

    2. In my experience, the first mile always sucks. After that, the pains start to go away and it gets enjoyable. It does start to such again after mile 20.

    Good luck
  • michellekicks
    michellekicks Posts: 3,624 Member
    I've been running regularly for about 10 years. Sometimes it still sucks. A lot of the time, after I warm up for a mile or so, then I'm good to go. And then there are times, especially when I'm trail running, that it's so much fun I don't ever want to stop.

    But even the worst run - when I'm done - feels better than not having run at all.


    I feel like a machine usually about 45 minutes+ into a good run. I love the way I'm pounding along with music in my ears, rhythmic breathing, sweat pouring... I love it. When you get in that aerobic groove pace that you feel like you could keep up forever. That's the spot right there.
  • cms721
    cms721 Posts: 179 Member
    Running is like a bad marriage. You end up getting hurt, you drink a lot, and you keep coming back for more.
  • MelsAuntie
    MelsAuntie Posts: 2,834 Member
    On reaching the barn water faucet that I forgot to turn off. That's the only time I run.
  • pwnderosa
    pwnderosa Posts: 280 Member
    I'm a really slow, bad asthmatic runner who started about 9 months ago, about 3 months after quitting smoking. I NEVER dreamed I could run even 5 minutes and I still find it grueling, painful, and grossly sweaty most of the time.

    But there is something about the way I progress (extremely slowly in my case) that keeps me going--there's nothing more thrilling than looking back over my logs and seeing starting out with being able to run only 1/2 a block to getting to the point where I ran my first mile straight through. It gives me a crazy sense of accomplishment that feels great, and it also lets me enjoy a chocolate biscotti or a beer guilt-free afterwards.

    The rhythm of the moment and the fresh air/time outdoors have done wonders for my mood and my outlook, and I do enjoy the scenery even if it's just seeing what's going on in my neighborhood that day.

    So...I would say it's both enjoyable and torture at the same time!
  • janinab75
    janinab75 Posts: 147 Member
    I posed this same question about a week ago. I got lots of good answers. I'm with you, I'm still struggling, still slow, and can only last about 20 - 22 minutes at a stretch right now. But I'll keep at it. I'm 3 weeks in.
  • ElsaVonMarmalade
    ElsaVonMarmalade Posts: 154 Member
    When I realized that the only way for me to enjoy running was to run slow, slow, slow. When I ran slow and didn't worry about my pace (even if it was basically the same speed as a quick walk), I started to realize how freeing it was - how your mind wanders, how you stop thinking about whether your legs hurt, how powerful you start to feel. Over time I went from a 15-min mile to an 11-min mile. I'm still "slow." But I'm burning calories and feeling great, so who cares?

    Everyone who hates running but WANTS to like it, I say - run slower.
    Everyone who hates running and doesn't want to like it, I say - life's too short, find something else to do.

    I wanted to like it, so I found a way, and now I love it. I've done a couple half-marathons and a marathon (slowly!), and the run is my favorite part of triathlon.
  • jenilla1
    jenilla1 Posts: 11,118 Member
    I'm not the fastest runner, but I've always loved it. Some people just instantly love running, some take time to find their groove, and some never learn to like it. Take it easy and don't push too hard at first. Don't see it as a grueling punishment and you'll be more likely to enjoy it. I find it's the best, most relaxing stress reliever.

    ETA: I wholeheartedly agree with the poster above me.
  • Its a love hate relationship. Its all about the WANT! Either you want to run or you don't. Running is not for everyone it takes a STRONG MIND-more mental than physical. "STRONG MIND, STRONG BODY"
  • hannamarie88
    hannamarie88 Posts: 231 Member
    I'm working on a C25K program, and I've just started week 4. I have compromised lung function, but the intense aerobic exercise is making it better-my lung function was up to 83% from 74% at the last office visit! And the extra cardio is definitely making it easier for me to lose weight. So, this has done good things for me. But here's the thing. At present, I really don't like running. It feels grueling. It also hurts my hip and my knee right now, though as my weight goes down that may change. At what point in your training, if ever, did you start to actually enjoy running?

    I started to enjoy it when I finished that 20 minute run in week 5. I wanted to pass out, but I felt like a frickin' bad-*kitten*, because I never thought I could ever be a runner.

    Same here! I'm in the middle of week 6 and I just want to get out there and do it. As a kid I could not run, at all. I have sports asthma and I was like the worst soccer player. So, I proved the little kid wrong that thought they never could run. And now I am really beginning to actually enjoy it.
  • prattylessfatty
    prattylessfatty Posts: 31 Member
    There are three times running is enjoyable for me

    1. When I am finished
    2. When I am so into the run that I forget I am running
    3. When I wake up the next morning and feel my body tighter, firmer and lighter

    Regarding shoes...go to your local running shoe store and they will put you on a treadmill, rate your stride, see if you are a pronator, etc and tell you the best shoe to buy. You may be tempted to go cheaper online...but don't! Buy local and ask if they have a running group. That is how I started. Now I love running and you know the rest of my story...
  • zanyzana
    zanyzana Posts: 248 Member
    Never. Never never never never... I tried it for 2 years, did 2 Sydney City to Surfs, a couple of "fun runs" and still hated it. Get on a mountain bike. It's fun from the start!
  • brandiuntz
    brandiuntz Posts: 2,717 Member
    I took up running in January. Running is a love/hate sport for me. Besides the physical benefits I've gained, the mental challenge of pushing myself each and every time I run has sealed it for me. I feel accomplished each time I've hit a new goal. There's a mental toughness I've developed with running that I haven't found in the other sports/exercises I do.

    There's also this great moment when I run when I get in a rhythm and feel like I could run forever. Never lasts long, but worth it every time.

    I love trail running. Tracks and around the neighborhood get boring, but running on a trail is so much fun.
  • clepant
    clepant Posts: 3,060 Member
    If you have pain, your body is telling you that something is wrong. Try Jeff Galloway's Run Walk Run. He trains lots of beginner runners and they never experience pain. After running my first sprint very first race the end of July, I started to re-examine my running being a person like you that didn't and some days still do not like it. I am actually improving my time, going further distances and I am not running through a painful hip or knee. (IT band issues}. You can check it out on his website. His book is an easy read.
  • soldiergrl_101
    soldiergrl_101 Posts: 2,206 Member
    I was able to enjoy running after the pain lessened and the victory was greater. After c25k I hated running still. It wasnt until I could complete a 5 k with ease and then strived to get my time down or complete a 10k that I really started to enjoy running. Because at that point I didnt feel the pain and i felt like i was trying to accomplish something for me because i wanted to not because i wanted to break down this wall between running and myself
  • skashi1
    skashi1 Posts: 8 Member
    I started running a couple months I'm running at 5 miles an hour for 30 minutes straight. First 15 is the anticipation to make it to the half way point, the second half of the run I literally do anything to distract myself to make it through. I'm hoping to love it one day too, but it hasn't happened yet. But I do feel a sense of accomplishment when I finish and with the diet, I'm dropping weight rapidly. My body is leaner and my heart is so much healthier. I have much more energy. Get so much more done in an day. So I just do it like medicine you don't want to take but have to.