Guest blog by Siya Natseva. Follow Siya on her blog, PumpUp (@cinnamonontop), and Instagram (@cinnamonontop8).
An active runner? A beginner? A runner-to-be? A runner-to-never-be? Regardless of how you describe yourself, I’m sure we agree that running has an unfairly bad reputation. It’s often reduced to a treadmill in a confined space. In our minds, running is the definition of ‘boring’! One foot in front of the other, to eternity and back. But running shouldn’t be mundane. Let’s see how…
(Photo : omghowgirl)
1. Music is the solution to every problem!
Your grandparents may not grasp the idea of blocking your hearing by means of headphones and a blast of sound, but for the 21st century kid musical accompaniment is a must. Running is no exception. When you focus on your favourite song versus the fact you’re drenched in sweat and exhausted, you…forget that you’re drenched in sweat and exhausted! Create a playlist to at least cover your estimated jog duration. You should aim for upbeat songs, not devastating rock ballads. Don’t be fooled: I’m a rock chick but I can’t imagine myself pumping it up (see what I did there?) to Bon Jovi’s ‘Always’.
2. Changing Gears
Due to its nature, running can become a tedious form of working out. This is particularly true when you discover a comfortable pace and settle for it. In this sense, upping the speed and / or length of your training is crucial. In addition - the changing gears part – you can modify your pace. Run fast for, say, three minutes and then lower your speed for three minutes. No hardcore interval training required; small adjustments make a difference. In this case, you’ll also benefit from a balanced music list. Harmonise your jogging with it.
3. The oh-so-important scenery
Running is what we ought to complete in the gym before the real deal happens. Perhaps this is your error. Running needn’t be done in the gym with air being scarce and people killing themselves on the machines. Visit the local park. Is there a secluded area which can serve as your running ground? Running in the open is a life saver. Having a jog, whereby you connect with nature, is beneficial in numerous ways. And, hey, there’s plenty of oxygen to feed your cells! New locations are a distraction from your physical discomfort and lead to better results!
4. Empty your head
Running is an effective stress-reliever. You can test this statement by fully concentrating on…you. Ditching technology isn’t half bad. We live in an extraordinarily hectic world and have to remind ourselves to breathe, embrace the moment and enjoy it. Free yourself of thoughts and simply run. Pay no attention to anything or anyone. Listen to your breathing and admire what you’re capable of! You’ll be surprised to feel extremely refreshed and worry-free after a run which is about you and you alone. Need to resolve an issue? By ridding yourself of mental effort, you’re likely to do so without even realising it!
5. Buddy Up
For those afraid of solitary confinement, teaming up with a friend may be what you need. Unlike other sports – notably swimming - running provides you with the opportunity to socialise! Having a companion will transform running into a fun activity that you participate in together. Sometimes the best workouts are those that don’t resemble a workout in the slightest. It’s certainly worth attempting, especially if you lose motivation quickly, for it’ll awake your competition spirit. You’ll be discouraged from whining and quitting. Instead, you’ll be invested in burning calories, toning up your body and catching up on gossip!
(Photo: Starling Fitness)
My name is Siya. I’m 27 years young, with a passion for a healthy lifestyle, including a love for nutritious food and an active routine. Having struggled with my weight for years, it would be incredibly rewarding to me to support others and inspire them to prioritise their health instead of their appearance. I’m currently working out at home and can relate to those on a tight budget. An aspiring blogger and writer, I’ve recently started a blog where I share simple recipes and exercises, and promote a positive body image. I welcome advice from like-minded fitness enthusiasts, for I believe one can never know enough. Hit me up and let’s ace this!