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Motivated to Run

Motivated to Run

twin lights, motivated to run
Finishing strong for a new Half Marathon PR 1:47:29

A few months ago I was sitting around talking with one of my running mates. We were talking about running, of course, and got on the topic of motivation and how people stick with running over the years.

There are so many things that can get in the way of your run for today and all of the runs this week, this month and the rest of your life.

As I often say, life gets in the way of running. We all work, many of us have families. Sometimes we have to work late or travel for business. There is sickness and injuries. And with DVRs, Netflix and FIOS on-demand TV there is always a good waste of time on TV. And how could I not mention Facebook, Twitter and blogs as a major time suck?

Motivation Tip

With all of these distractions how do runners stay motivated and resist distraction? How do we get back out on the road after a long week with 0 workouts? How do we do it when we feel like crap because we are overdue for the endorphin fix?

Sometimes we get into that negative feedback loop that tells us we are now officially losers because we missed our run yesterday.

My buddy said the biggest motivator for him is the running club. Knowing that people are expecting him to show up for the Sunday Long Run and again on Tuesday night for our club run gets him out of the house.

The social interaction during the runs and afterwards is something that he looks forward to and is a highlight of his day. His only regret is not joining the club sooner.

When he said this I readily agreed. The social aspect of running is a major factor in my motivation to keep running also. I enjoy being in the best shape of my life. But that is not enough. I could probably modify my diet and keep most of that weight off and cut back on the running. Running takes a lot of time and can be hard to do sometimes, both mentally and physically.

If your New Year’s Resolution was to start running let me suggest that you join a local running club. I know many people will say they’re not a runner or not good enough to join a club. Let me tell you that your ability does not matter.

Most clubs have runners of every ability level. You are sure to find someone happy to run with you. You do not have to be fast or a marathon runner to join a club. Clubs welcome beginners and runners of all capabilities.

Don’t feel intimidated. Runners are not judgmental and are some of the most supportive people you will ever meet. Experienced runners are always happy to answer your questions and provide advice. I’ve been doing this for 10 years and I learn something new from other runners all the time. Sometimes I learn from people with fewer running years than me. Good advice is good advice.

The Road Runners Club of America, RRCA.ORG, has a searchable list of over 1,000 member clubs across the country. There are clubs in almost every state, except North Dakota and Puerto Rico, three clubs in the USVI and one in Guam. Pretty much anywhere you live in the US you will find a club. If you cannot find a club in your town or close by, the RRCA has resources to help you start an RRCA club in your community.

Another place to find a local club is Their list is more extensive and I would definitely recommend a look see over there also. For my non-US readers, also has a listing of clubs around the globe. From the numbers listed I have to assume that it is not comprehensive, but it may be worth checking it out. They list only 662 clubs in the US and RRCA has over 1,000 in the US. also has an extensive list of running clubs. They list 5 clubs in North Dakota but do not even list Guam or the USVI. You can search this site using their list or by clicking on your state. I think that if you use all three resources you should be able to find a local club.

Like most things in life, running is more fun when you do it with other people. Fun is a major reason that many people run. I encourage you to up the fun factor in your running, add some serious motivation and join a local club.

Run well my friends


© 2013 anageli nagelin

Running Year in Review

2012 was a challenging and rewarding year for my running. A brief recap of my running adventures through October, 2012.

My 2012 Running Year in Review

This has been a busy month and a busy year for me. I’ve run sixteen races this year and four races within the past 30 days.

The biggest challenge of the year was running the BAA Half Marathon and the ING Hartford Marathon within six days of each other. When I registered for the two races months ago I thought this would be a fun and interesting challenge. I’ve run several marathons before but having a half-marathon within six days of the marathon would add a new twist.

I thought the closeness of the races would be my biggest challenge and then I got hurt. For six weeks I had to cut way back on my training and did mostly stretching and strength training as prescribed by my physical therapist.

twin lights
Finishing strong for a new Half Marathon PR 1:47:29

The last race I ran before my injury was The Twin Lights Half Marathon on May 12th. I surprised myself and set a new PR. When I did that I really felt like I was on the right track with my training and I would be able to PR in Hartford and maybe qualify for Boston. Then due to work and sickness I basically stopped training for three weeks and then came back to fast, and got hurt.

I started going to physical therapy about once a week and did all of my exercises as prescribed. I kept running shorter distances, usually no more than 3 miles at a time. My PT was okay with this level of running.

Earlier in the year I had signed up for the BAA Distance Medley. The day before the Boston Marathon I ran their 5K and then on June 24th I ran the BAA 10K. My leg never really hurt while I was running the 10K. There aren’t any hills on this course and I took it very easy just to be safe

In July I ran the VERT Sasquatch 2.4 mile trail race just to try out trail running and for the great party afterwards. I took it very slow again. On August 5th I did the Maine Lobster Fest 10K in Rockland Maine. There were hills and it was hot for this race. I took it easy and survived that one.

On September 8th, I ran a leg of the Lake Winni Relay, 10.8 miles, at an 8:44 pace. This was the fastest and farthest I had run since May. My legs felt strong during the race and I did not have any unusual pain afterwards. This race really helped build my confidence back and told me that I was back on track.

On September 16th I ran The Lone Gull 10K and set a PR. On September 29th I ran the Granara-Skerry 5K and set another PR. I felt confident again and ran these races as hard as I could. After Lake Winnie I wanted to see what I was capable of and how far my rehab had progressed. These races confirmed my progress and further boosted my confidence. I felt like I was ready for my challenge.

At the BAA Half Marathon on October 7th I did not set a PR, but I think I could have. I lined up late and got stuck in a huge crowd where I could not move. When there was room to run I threw everything I had into the race. At the end of the race I felt good about the race and I was pretty sure I had not aggravated my injury. That was key. If I had pulled the piriformis again I would not have had time to recover before my marathon.

The days between the BAA Half and ING Marathon I ran 4 miles Tuesday night and 5K on Thursday. I went to the gym and stretched three days and that was about it. My taper week was also a recovery week. Like most runners would, I spent that time pretty much obsessed with my upcoming marathon.

I tried to manage all of the details for race day, but as anyone who read my race re-cap, several items got out my control. If you would like to read about my stressful marathon check out this link.

I made some mistakes and learned some lessons. That’s all part of the journey. All of the details are available on my re-cap as referenced above. I’m no racing or organization expert but I’m always working on my process. I feel that the three keys to successful racing are

  • Getting the miles in
  • Physical conditioning/cross training/strength training
  • Developing and fine tuning your race routine

I’ll go into my thinking on this on another post. A lot of other runners have written some great articles on this topic.

At this point in time I have pretty much run my schedule for the year It just feels so odd not having anything to train for. I’m going to have to work on my motivation to keep up with my training, to stay motivated. That is the current challenge that I face.

How do you stay motivated when you do not have a race on your schedule?

Run well my friends!