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How to keep your motivation high when you are tired of Training?

This is the million dollar question that has just as many answers.  Over my 28 years of competitive running I have not found any one trick that motivates me all the time.  You have to have a bag of tricks and see which one works for that given day, week, year or training cycle.  A marathon training cycle could take about 6 months and that is a long time to be focused on one thing.

Personally my motivation would get a huge pick up if I watched a race on TV.  ESPN is one of the few channels that shows running.  They use to have it on once a month for a 1 hour.  They summarized  4-5 races (usually the big races) with in the hour.  They showed the highlights of the race, and give stories about some of the non elite runners.  The stories about the non elite runners where my favorite because they where interviewing  people like you and me.  One year my husband taped the Hawaii Ironman- now that is a motivating one.  The year we taped the Ironman won several awards for the coverage.  Once again they tell stories about the elite and age grouper.  Many of the stories had you almost in tears.

I am fortunate that my husband is also a runner.   He was nationally ranked in the 20k and represented the US in four World Duathlon Championships.  Having a life time partner that competes is a motivator and help.  We often helped each other when our motivation was low.  When we went to races we wanted to place higher than the other.  In some cases we won money and the ride home was sweeter for the one that won more.

One way to keep your motivation going is to physically write down your goal.  The goal could be a specific race, time and any other details.  For example if you have a rival in your area and you hear they are running that race write down you want to bet them.  Put your written down goal in areas you will see it throughout the day.  Tape it to your bathroom mirror this way you will see it first thing in the morning and last thing before you go to be.  A study was done with students from Harvard.  One group physically wrote there goals down on paper and the other group just verbally told others.  The group that physically wrote them down where more successful at reaching the goals.

I have only mentioned two ideas to keep your motivation high when you are tired of training.  Talk to other runners and see what they do.  It is like raising children what works today may not work next time which is why you need a bag full of tricks.


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