Running Slump

I’ve felt this way once before. Last year, right after my grandmother died, I hit a little running slump.  I was tired, my motivation was low, and when I was running, I felt slow and consumed by anxious thoughts, which really took away from my running.

This time, I think the reasoning for the slump is a little different, but the symptoms are largely the same.

In the span of two months, I got a new job, got married to my love, and we bought a house.  And none of it was planned to all hit at once.

With the job, I got a call in May, interviewed throughout the month of June, and was offered the position in early July.  The wedding had been set for August 23rd for some time, and the home came available, and honestly, the inventory is so low in Raleigh that it would have been silly to have forgone that home.

So we dove in headfirst.  And I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy in my entire life.

And like I do anytime I’m faced with any major life changes, I felt this exhaustion come over me.  It hasn’t affected my work, as I’m still in that phase where I’m killing myself to impress everyone, but it’s definitely affected my running and my motivation.  Rather than constantly being raring to go for those runs, I’ve had to pull out every trick in the book to make sure that I make my workouts.  I invite friends, I try new workouts, I make sure that I am scheduled to take one of my instructors classes, all in the hopes that I don’t fall behind on my workouts.  But motivating myself to go when ALL I want to to is lay around in the bed and watch reruns of Sex & the City is hard, and I’m really trying.

Honestly, the last time I felt like I was in this slump a year ago, I pushed through it, but had a few tricks to help get me through.

  • I went to a lot of hot yoga.  Granted, one of the times I went, a pose we got into tapped right into my emotional side and I finished out the class sobbing for whatever reason, but I sure felt good after.
  • I ran.  And I revamped my runs.  I listened to Motown the Musical, Les Mis, and sometimes, nothing at all, all different from my usual playlists.
  • I read Dean Karnazes books.  Which is really good cause he’s an ultra marathoner.  So it kind of made you feel like your little 26.2 wasn’t that bad.
  • I vomited my way through the Greensboro Marathon.  But the fact I finished convinced me I was a lot stronger than I thought I was, and rekindled my love for running.

So the slump sucks.  I don’t like the way it makes me feel, and it scares me – makes me feel like I will never love to run again.  But slowly and steadily, I will be back to exactly where I was before, maybe even better!

What do you do when you’re in a running slump?

12 thoughts on “Running Slump

  1. I was there this summer… I couldn’t pull myself out of it… I just ran when I could and while I refuse to run garmin free just tried not to focus on my time and just enjoy the run and time with my thoughts… I always felt better after my runs I just had a hard time getting dressed and getting my butt out of the door… Sometimes when so much is going on the last thing you want to do is go for a run, but on the flip side sometimes is the best thing for us!

    1. I think you hit the nail on the head – sometimes running Garmin-free is the key. Sometimes when you’re running, you can get locked into your Garmin, and getting rid of it can do wonders for your morale!

  2. Oh no! Running slumps are rough. Even pulling every trick in the book for motivation can be hard. I find that when I feel under motivated, I just go through the motions one thing at a time…put on workout clothes…lace shoes…dynamic stretches…walk to gym and just start. Give it a mile and by then I’m usually good to keep going. If I’m truly not feeling it, I’ll try again the next day!

    1. I usually have to give it four miles. I did it today and it felt SO good. The euphoria typically sets in around 4 and then suddenly, I feel on top of the world. The trick is GETTING myself to those four miles!

  3. I was in a running slump after the Raleigh HIM this summer. I had no desire to run after all the training and the heat. I did workouts I wanted to do, like biking, swimming, yoga and lifting. I did make myself do a few 2 mile runs to keep up my fitness for sprint tri’s but nothing else. It lasted about 2 months but I’m back to craving a good run again!

    1. AWESOME! I think you handled it in the perfect way. Letting yourself do other things that you actually wanted to do, and then letting yourself naturally get back to what you like to do. AWESOME!

  4. I’d like to say I just run right along anyway but unfortunately… I slump. Then, as I notice my terrible moods and my clothes getting tighter I force myself to get out there again. It’s never fun at first but eventually I come around and look forward to it again.

  5. I couldn’t agree more. I’m heading back to marathon training this winter and I know that many of these emotions await me. Happy running! All the best!

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