Runners, when does running become enjoyable?



  • jenn26point2
    jenn26point2 Posts: 429 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?

    If your hip and knee hurts, chances are your shoes are wrong. I had similar issues. I didn't find relief in my hip and knee pain until I ventured into the realm of barefoot running (I wear vibram toe shoes). That being said, it took 6 years to finally enjoy running. Now it's easy and pain free and I love it.
  • bcattoes
    bcattoes Posts: 17,301 Member
    OP, I don't want to burst your bubble, but it doesn't get enjoyable for everyone. I ran regularly for a couple of years and always found it grueling. Everything I liked about it had to do with it being over. :laugh:

    I liked the sense of accomplishment, as I'd never been able to run any distance whatsoever before. I loved the calorie burn because I didn't really worry about calories when I was running. But the actual running? I never liked it. It was a means to and end, but that was enough to keep me going.
  • running_free_1984
    running_free_1984 Posts: 115 Member
    I'm not sure when it happened. I was training just to reach distance goals and to lose weight. I had an operation just as i was really starting to pick up speed and distance. The depression that ensued while having to recover from 4 holes in my abdomen was awful. I was desperate to 'feel' running again, even just to go on a walk. It made me realise how vital it was to me as a person and not just for fitness or any superficial reason. And i NEVER take for granted my ability to go out, try my best and enjoy it for what it is and how it makes me feel...
  • running_free_1984
    running_free_1984 Posts: 115 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.

  • SoDamnHungry
    SoDamnHungry Posts: 6,999 Member
    Some people never enjoy running. I have enjoyed it precisely once. During my first and only 5k. Not at all during the training for it.
  • JennetteMac
    JennetteMac Posts: 763 Member
    Same time as sticking needles in your eyeballs.

    I made myself train and run for Race for Life twice, after a relative and a friend died from cancer.
    Only that made me do it.
    I hated it, but hated cancer more.

    Never got back in to it.
    Given my motivations, hope I never have to either.
  • Greywalk
    Greywalk Posts: 193 Member
    After every workout about 30 minutes when I finished and the endrophins kicked in major. Seriously I tried running off and on for a number of years but always got shin splits and hip pains. The last time I took the trouble to go to a running store and have them recommend a shoe. I used a running store that really analyzed my gait and the sales man came highly recommended by a running friend. It worked my shoes were like running on clouds and I could run without the shin splints or the pain. I normally run about 10 to 20 miles a week depending on what I am doing and then play soccer for an additional 5 to 12 miles. I am still not skinny but I am alive and enjoy my sport at age 56. I run in the morning. A few times I have run and got to thinking about things completely forgetting about the time. I urge everyone correct the extra coin to get the right ones...then work your way up to it. I am a runner and know this because I run rain or shine cold or hot...and sometimes when I hate it but often when I don't feel one way or another.
  • running isn't for everyone. personally, I HATED to run when I was younger, and now have started to really appreciate it. It makes me sweat the most, and when I am really stressed out -- I crave sweat!

    try running in different areas, running on the treadmill while watching a movie or listening to an audio book, or run outside around a beautiful wooded park -- find what keeps you motivated. do you give up when you know how far you have gone? when your lungs start to hurt? when you get tired? when you are done?

    frankly, if you don't like to run -- then don't! do something else that you enjoy so that you continue to do it. that is the point, right? to stay active? if your distain for running is causing you not to want to do it, then take my advice and find something else. especially something that is easier on your knees/hips like the elliptical or swimming!
  • melmckay99
    melmckay99 Posts: 358
    I'm not sure I understand why people want to do things they don't enjoy? I have this feeling that most of you who say you HATE running secretly enjoy it, but complaining about it gives you oppurtunity to talk about it and brag in front of your friends about your secret awesomeness without sounding like an egotistical fitness freak. Running is not always easy though, I agree with that much. Some days running is better than others, but I never regret a run. They are a Sunday ritual for me now. I get up bright and early and put in about 10K every Sunday morning while the rest of the world is sleeping in. Best. Feeling. Ever. :)
  • spoiledpuppies
    spoiledpuppies Posts: 675 Member
    I do absolutely love running! When I started, I could barely go a block or two without stopping to walk. I'm not sure how long it took to love it, but I can tell you that I literally cried in the doctor's office when I was told I have plantar fasciitis and shouldn't run for awhile (which has turned into five years!). I love it so much, that I've decided to run with the pain because I've found that if I take it easy and only do it every week or so, it doesn't actually make the pain any worse than it would be anyway.

    I think my favorite thing is that, though it can be hard--especially at the beginning, it really feels like the easiest way to get a good workout. I can get my heart rate up doing other things, but I actually feel like I'm really working hard to do so. With running, I just go and the heart rate's up before I know it!

    Good luck! (I'm jealous!)
  • crista_b
    crista_b Posts: 1,193 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?
    Sorry, I didn't read through the whole thread (only read the first page), but I wanted to say, for A LOT of people week 4 is kind of the hump. It feels the hardest for some reason, but once you can get past it and finish week 5, you start to feel unstoppable.

    Personally, week 5 is when I started to love running, and in the past I never would have thought that was possible. I'm now finishing the Zen Labs c210k program and doing a full 60-minute run on Thursday (if I can get out of bed at 4:15am :grumble: ). I'm planning to continue and sign up for the Feb 2015 Disney Princess half-marathon in June and hope to do a full-marathon before I turn 30. I definitely caught the running bug! :laugh:

    With that said, you may not ever enjoy it, and that's okay. You don't have to run. If you like to dance, try Zumba; if you like to ride your bike, do that; etc. I think the key is finding something active that you enjoy and doing that, but from personal experience and a lot of discussions in the c25k group ( ), try to get through week 5 before deciding you don't want to do it.
  • PauliePCC
    PauliePCC Posts: 32 Member
    up to 2 years ago, I hated running. I only lifted weights, but barely ran. I decided to start running and at first, I would have to stop for air multiple times during a 3 mile run. I just keep on going because I was using the tracking app Endomondo which is awesome and always ran with my favorite music. Now I can 5k's and 10k's non-stop with pretty good speed because my lung capacity has increased dramatically. So to answer your question, it become fun to me when I saw the incremental progress I was making despite the grind. It won't be that fun at first because you are doing something that can be very challenging to the inexperienced body, but chip away and you will be awarded with progress and you'll def start to enjoy it much more. Btw, listen to your body. When you are sore and achy, take a rest day or two. Just don't extent the rest days into weeks or months like so many tend to do. Good luck.
  • gobonas99
    gobonas99 Posts: 1,048 Member
    Huh. Ok, now looking up minimalist running shoes. Didn't even know they were used for running. I thought minimalist shoes were more for weightlifting! Hey, does anyone have any recommendations for places to look for pain-free or low injury running tips? I've read Chi Running, but it's not entirely clicking.

    Be cautioned, transitioning from a normal shoe to a minimalist shoe can cause a lot of calf pain as your stride and foot placement changes. Go slow in those. I would recommend going to a real running store (not a chain store) and getting fitted. They should watch you run and help you get what is right for you. Try on all sorts, and go with what feels best. A good shoe shouldn't need breaking in (the exception being your first pair of minimalist shoes if you are used to traditional heel-toe drops). A good store will let you return them if they don't work out.

    I completely agree with this. most standard sneakers have a 12MM drop (the drop is the difference between the ball of your foot and your heel when standing on a flat surface - ie the sole of the sneaker is flat, but your heel is 12MM higher than the ball of your foot). When I last got fitted in July, I got a sneaker with an 8MM drop. It seriously took me about 4 weeks before it felt somewhat normal, and my calves were CRAZY sore after my runs. There are still days now (after almost two months and more than 80 miles using them), that the drop feels a bit weird and my calves still get sore - especially on my long run days. The guy at my running store who fitted me recommended sticking with the 8MM for at least 6 months before trying a sneaker with the next drop (4MM)....and even then, he said you should alternate between the 8MM drop and the 4MM drop for at least a month, because that is even more difficult to adjust to than going from 12MM to 8MM. Then stick with the 4MM for at least 6 months (he said many people wind up staying at 4MM for a year or more) before moving down to a "true" barefoot running shoe like Vibram that has no drop....but he also said that a lot of people end up sticking with a 4MM drop and not going further.

    as far as when it becomes enjoyable, I'm hoping soon LOL :) I restarted running in May to train for a triathlon. I HATED it. WIth a fiery hot passion. I couldn't even run for 2 minutes without having to stop and walk. But I stuck with it. I've gone from a 15 minute mile to a fairly consistent 11:30 minute mile in about 12 weeks. I've gone from barely making it through 2 miles in a half hour to running 5 miles (with only about 2 minutes of walking) in under an hour. Now, I am working on my speed, because I want to get to a sub-30 minute 5k time. Are there still days when I have to walk a bit? Definitely. But there are also days where I run the entire time. Do I love running now? Not even close. But I don't hate it any more. I am starting to kinda like it a little bit. Of course, that may change once it gets too cold and snowy to run outside, and I have to run on the dreadmill...but hopefully I will survive winter and come spring, be consistently running sub-10 minute miles for 10k's :)
  • contingencyplan
    contingencyplan Posts: 3,639 Member
    It's a sensory thing for me. I find that the only way I can run for extended periods is on smooth, level surfaces and while wearing densely padded shoes. Even then I need some sort of mental distraction. It never really became "enjoyable" for me. But that's because the motion produced doesn't appeal to me on a sensory level. Up and down pogo jumping, on the other hand, does. Running isn't for everybody and you shouldn't force it on yourself if you don't want to. The only reason I'm even so much as attempting it is for my dog's sake.
  • barrpc
    barrpc Posts: 96
    Didn't take but about a month before I really started to enjoy it. I don't think it is for everyone. My daughter runs and always tells me she hates it. I told her she should try some other forms of exercise. I know people who love cycling and that is all they do, some weights and body building. If you are not enjoying it find something you do enjoy, life is too short.
    CARBLEGEND Posts: 47 Member
    its enjoyable immediately....from the first step...YOU ARE DOING IT WRONG....Run slowly...the first sign of pain..and stress...STOP...this is a big secret..its enjoyable because I never strain or stress....You will love this method...I began runnng 100 feet..the 150 etc. almost up to 13 miles gotta love it ALL FUN WHEN YOU RUN...chuck the pain
  • DanIsACyclingFool
    DanIsACyclingFool Posts: 417 Member
    It's only enjoyable for me when I stop.

    I've experimented with it for various purposes. Personally, I have no idea how people enjoy this!

    You either enjoy it or you don't, IMO. If you're hoping you'll start liking it later on I'd pick another exercise. If fitness is too much like work you won't stick with it long term. Kudos to those who enjoy running for its own sake or enjoy the challenge but no force on earth will convert me from a cyclist to a runner!
  • mazmataz
    mazmataz Posts: 331 Member
    If you run often and enough and for long enough, every now and then you will feel a big surge of energy mid-run. It feels like you're flying, like you could go on forever. This is the high that runners chase, and this is what makes it occassionally enjoyable :)

    Also, you will always feel better for doing a run than not doing it!
  • When I see how many miles I've done, am able to actually -run- long periods of times, It's such a rush of adrenline, that I can do this with my body and that I've improved from where I've come.

    I used to not be able to do even 2.5mph for a long period of time, now I can do 4.5 for 20 minutes, It's just about taking the time to train your body and get used to the stress/endurance that comes with it.
  • Mommybug2
    Mommybug2 Posts: 149 Member
    I am a firm believer that running isn't for everyone. I hate it and I will NEVER enjoy it. Being a DD-DDD all my life I have always detested running. I have tried 100s of bras but nothing that makes it "comfortable" for me to run. Then I broke my ankle in college and it didn't set right so now it causes me lots of issues especially when I try to run. Not to mention that as I get older my knees seem to "pop" and while it doesn't hurt in the moment - I get a lot of discomfort later in the day.

    So instead I chose the elliptical, I can do @5 miles in 60 minutes, who needs the extra stress and pain of running when there are other alternatives? Not this girl!