I have a few food posts coming later this week but I forgot my camera cord at work and I’ve been working from home. Food posts to come, I promise. For now though, I want to talk about running.

Last week, I posted my thoughts on interval workouts to fight boredom on the treadmill. I really like interval workouts because I’m able to push myself in small bursts. However, I don’t always do interval workouts. Today, for example, I ran 3 miles at 6.0 mph – which is a 10 minute mile. I wanted to pace myself and see how far I could go. By mile 3, I was sweaty…but bored. I finished my workout with 10 minutes of walking uphill. It was a decent workout, yes, but I really need learn to push myself and actually like running.

I recently read an article in Runner’s World about Apolo Ohno, the Olympic speed skater. As part of his training when he was younger, he would jog with his teammates (and often skip part of the workout to eat pizza with a friend then join his teammates again at the end of the run). He hated running. That was until he was alone for a week in the wilderness, contemplating his future as an athlete. He ran a lot during that time and, even in the harsh conditions, learned to love it. Today, he runs nearly every day and even envisions himself skating while he’s running.

I find that some days, running is easier than others. Sometimes my workout is over before I know it and other times, my legs feel like lead and I really need to push myself to finish. Sometimes, I’m just plain bored. I don’t have a running mantra but maybe I should. Normally, when I want to stop, I ask myself how I feel from 1 to 10. Usually, when I’m just bored, I’m not that tired or in pain so I’m at a 5. That keeps me going. Temporarily. But, I want to really enjoy my runs.

My questions to you:

How do you push yourself to finish your workouts? 

Do you have a mantra?

What keeps you going?