running ... how do you stay motivated

I want to do more exercise to increase my weight loss... i will end up running one or twice and then lose all motivation. How do you stay motivated to keep the exercise going.... would love to hear all thoughts


  • lrichelle
    lrichelle Posts: 54 Member
    I run too but can lose motivation quickly. Have you thought about signing up for a 5k or some other race? That's what keeps me motivated. No slacking off with a race on the agenda! :smile:
  • thavoice
    thavoice Posts: 1,326 Member
    Track your progress. It is motivating to see how much faster and longer you can run.

    I also started to put a dollar in a jar for each mile I ran and got myself I really wanted. I did that at the beginning to stay motivated but when I started to get to 15-20 miles a week I couldnt afford to do that anymore but by then I was hooked on running!
  • cweaver1981
    cweaver1981 Posts: 76 Member
    What really keeps me motivated while running is that I try to break my records. If I am doing weights I usually only do a quick run and I will try to beat my best speed. If I am doing a long run I try to run further and for a longer time than the last time I ran. I haven't been running for very long so this really works for me while I try to improve. I suppose once I have been running for a while it might not be so fun for me anymore.
  • AmyRhubarb
    AmyRhubarb Posts: 6,890 Member
    Sign up for a race.

    Use a motivational app like Nike+ to track your runs and set goals for yourself (they give trophies and other virtual rewards that are surprisingly motivational!), and add friends to it for some friendly competition - they show the leaderboard on the front page.

    Find a new route, or run your usual route in the other direction (assuming you're already running outside - if not, get out there!) - just changing up my route makes a difference for me.

    New gear - a new hat, shorts, sports bra - or even new socks make me want to get out there and try them out.

    Music - set up a good playlist on your phone or iPod to keep you moving. Or get an app like Rock My Run that has playlists you can download by genre or decade to keep you motivated.

    Are you just running, is that your only exercise? If so, mix that up too - I run three days a week, and the other three I'm doing workouts with dumbbells for strength, or a good yoga/pilates routine. If I did the same thing every day I'd be bored. is a great site with a huge variety of workouts for those non-running days.
  • sheedy17
    sheedy17 Posts: 128
    I usually do a 5 K run, on a public trail, I sort of play a game, I run a good pace but if there is people infront of me, I sprint as hard as I can to get past them and then I go back to my slow pace, sometimes I run alot and get an intense run when there is heavy traffic, sometimes I just jog lightly because no one is on the trail. I also time it from start to finish and also try to beat my time every day I run
  • redheadmommy
    redheadmommy Posts: 908 Member
    Maybe find an exercise you actually enjoy? I tried running so many times , because that just seem to be THE thing to do for weight loss and health, but I had a hard time motivating myself and every time I stopped after a month or so. After I while I just realize why the hell I am forcing myself to do something that I do not actually enjoy. I do not try to run anymore. I use my bike as a transportation device, I play squash, badminton, frisbee and I do heavy lifting. All of those I enjoy and looking forward to it and I do not have to search high and low for motivation. Unfortunately I do not as much time for exercising as I'd like, but I am actually happy and excited to exercise whenever I can.
    Have you tried any other form of exercise? Why do you want to run? There are tons of other exercises you can do. Maybe if you try a wide variety of exercises , you may find something that you really enjoy .
  • GiddyupTim
    GiddyupTim Posts: 2,819 Member
    I think redheadmommy might be right. Find something you really like to do.
    I run and I love it. I stay motivated because I naturally want to always get better -- that is, go a bit faster each time or go just a bit further each time.
    But, it happens naturally. I do not force it. I like the feeling of running. I like working hard and improving.
  • ncsjodi
    ncsjodi Posts: 102 Member
    I run, but I have trouble staying motivated too. It's such a solitary activity and I'm a pretty social person. I can force myself to run when I'm training for a race, but otherwise, I'm much better at being committed to a group exercise class. My favorites are turbokick and piyo. I make plans to meet friends there and then I can't not go. Running by myself is much easier to slack off on....
  • SonicDeathMonkey80
    SonicDeathMonkey80 Posts: 4,489 Member
    First, you don't need to run to lose weight. Second, if you don't like it, then do something else. Third, if you really want to run, then sign up for a race. You will eventually lose the weight, so you should have a back up goal to stay motivated for the long term.
  • arussell134
    arussell134 Posts: 463 Member
    How I stay motivated running is by changing it up... a lot. I run different routes, different distances, some days just do sprint workouts, and other days I don't run at all but some other form of cardio.

    I should also add, it kind of sucks starting out running (not going to lie) and you may find you have to push yourself through the initial few weeks. It does get better - trust me.

    I also echo the races. I've done 5k - full marathons and they have all been useful in keeping me focused. Good luck and don't give up.
  • amandzor
    amandzor Posts: 386 Member
    The C25K app helps keep me motivated because I'm the sort of person who wants to finish each week. My Fitbit is also helpful. I have a desk job, so I won't reach my cal/step goal without doing some sort of walking/jogging activity for the day. I like seeing the progress report at the end of the week.

    Rewarding yourself for say, a new distance or time record can help too. When I ran/walked a 5k on the treadmill, I bought myself some new shoes. When I'm finally able to jog the whole thing? I'll get something else!
  • MelisRunning
    MelisRunning Posts: 819 Member
    A few of the others have said this already, but, sign up for a race!!!

    I need to have a race on looming on the horizon. I don't like to fail and will turn myself inside out to be prepared for a race. It's great motivation!!!
  • ccm1912
    ccm1912 Posts: 39 Member
    I just got into running about 4 months ago. Tracking progress, like said before, is really key. When you start to see yourself running farther, or faster, its a serious win. and keep setting goals for yourself. My first goal was to be able to run a 5K straight. Ive done it a few times now, and now my new goal is run more often, and get so many miles per week. I like using the Nike+ running app, because you can actually set goals in it, you get achievements for beating your longest run or fastest time, you can make a run public on Facebook and if people like or comment on the status you hear cheers while you run, which is REALLY awesome and gets me through a slump.

    Also, it doesn't have to be a solitary activity, if you can find a friend or someone else to be your running partner! My roomie and i try to go together and its a little hard sometimes to get our schedules in line but when we do it flies by, and we keep each other at a good pace.
  • cdavison2018
    cdavison2018 Posts: 15 Member
    Find a companion who is about the same skill and speed as yourself and schedule runs. You will get out the door. Make the goal doable and at most convenient time and place. Parks and trails are great! If you are running by yourself- give yourself the needed walk breaks to keep the run manageable. You don't have to be fast or go long to have a good run for YOU!
  • georgiaTRIs
    georgiaTRIs Posts: 231 Member
    music and appropriate speed. Start slow and don't push to hard. After a while you just get hooked.
  • shadowgem13
    shadowgem13 Posts: 29 Member
    I use an app called Zombies! run. Nothing gets me moving like the undead coming to eat me. I know I am a bit odd but it worked to get me into running like nothing else ever did.
  • sculli123
    sculli123 Posts: 1,221 Member
    If I'm running by myself in my neighborhood the motivation is mostly listening to music. If I'm doing a 5k or some kind of mud / obstacle run I tend to get competitive and start passing people. I did one two weeks ago and have the Spartan Race coming up this Saturday.
  • ashenriver
    ashenriver Posts: 498 Member
    The best thing for me is to run with a group, it also keeps be going. That is how I ran my first 6.7km stretch.

    I am lucky that I can run with my boyfriend and I found a group to run with one day a week as well.

    Running with a group helps keep you committed since they are expecting you to show up, and are usually a friendly bunch. If they weren't they would be running solo. And they can motivate you to keep jogging.

    Also running with someone helps keep you at a good pace. You don't want to run too fast that you can't have a conversation. I usually end up talking with the people I am running with and that keeps me at a good pace.
  • MeanderingMammal
    MeanderingMammal Posts: 7,866 Member
    i will end up running one or twice and then lose all motivation. How do you stay motivated to keep the exercise going....

    Basically a focus on results, but if you're only running a couple of times before losing motivation you're not going to see that.

    When I started running I was seeing a decent amount of weight loss initially but it took about 3 months before I was making solid improvements. I used a C25K podcast initially and moving from one week to the next as the challenge increased helped me, now I tend to work on defined plans in each cycle so that I have some structure to my running and I'm not just aimlessly out for a while.

    Started with C25K, moved onto C25K+ for a few weeks, 10K plan, then a 10K pace improvement plan. I'm now working on a half marathon plan.
  • melaniecheeks
    melaniecheeks Posts: 6,349 Member
    Running isn't a great route to weight loss, BUT it can be a very rewarding part of your exercise and health regime.

    Are you running outside, or on a treadmill?

    As others have said, variety and goals:

    Run with a friend
    Run with a dog
    Run slowly
    Run sprints
    Run different routes
    Create a motivating playlist of your favourite uplifting songs
    Do C25k
    Sign up for a race
    Find your nearest parkrun and join it (my local one has around 100 people who run 5k every Saturday morning, and I've made some great friends through it)
    Dont run every day
    Track your progress (MapMyRun or similar apps)

    And remember, EVERY runner finds the first mile tough.