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Running can be a head game. Use these motivational tips to come out on top.
SHIFT TO WALK SPEED
Run for four minutes, walk for 30 seconds. “This helps when you’re not as fit as you should be in a long race,” says Professor Andrew Bosch of the MRC Research unit at uCT.
STRIKE LIKE A NINJA
Listen to your stride: ninja good, elephant bad. Lean forward slightly as it will help you touch down on your forefoot. Not only will it be more efficient, your joints will thank you.
RUN FOR A CAUSE
“It boosts your incentive. with social media you can gain support from friends and family non-invasively,” says Runner’s World Chief Running Officer Bart Yasso.
FIND A PARTNER
“Stick to more popular running routes like promenades and parks (or join a running club). You’ll often see regular faces,” suggests MH Girl Next door Amelia Frenkel.
ZOOM UP HILLS
“Taking it easy up hills might be best for less-trained runners,” explains Bosch. “But the top of the hill is a good time to attempt to mentally ‘break’ an opponent.”
“If you hit a bad patch, try counting your steps,” says Olympian Kara Goucher. “when you hit 100, start over. It can take your mind off your troubles and put you back on track.”
CREATE A MANTRA
Think brief, positive and instructive. For instance, says US Runner’s World editor-in-chief David Willey, to fight fatigue when powering up a hill, think: claw the ground.
IGNITE YOUR STRIDE
If you’re tiring during a run and need a mental boost, imagine you’re on hot coals, says running coach Jeff Galloway. You’ll definitely speed up your stride.
JOIN TREADMILL UNIVERSITY
“The rhythms of treadmill running boost learning,” says running coach Matt Barbosa. Use an easy run to rehearse a speech or listen to a podcast.
Picture credit Kolesky/Nikon/Red Bull Content Pool