Running is one of the greatest, most effective and accessible workouts around. But even the best workouts can leave you losing interest if you keep repeating them day in and day out. To get the best results out of any workout it’s beneficial to gradually and constantly change up your routine. The same goes for running, too!
There are plenty of ways to make running more challenging, more fun, and therefore keep the calorie-blasting, fat-burning benefits coming. A simple change in scenery or a fresh, upbeat playlist can help spark a brand new interest for the same energizing sport. Read on for our list of 5 easy ways to make your run more interesting!
Find a need for speed.
Including quick speed intervals into your regular run can help bust boredom and burn extra calories and fat. Start with 2 minutes of jogging at your normal pace, then pick up into a fast run or sprint for 30-60 seconds. This type of interval training increases your calorie and fat burn much more than a lower intensity, longer duration run. You’ll even be burning mega calories after your workout is complete as your body brings itself back to it’s pre-run state. Repeat these intervals during your run and you will be shocked at how quickly time flies by!
Work your entire body.
Try toning it up! Every quarter of a mile, take a break from running and complete this circuit: 10 squats, 10 pushups, and a 30 second side plank on each side. Including this total body strength training in your running workout will help you tone up from head to toe. Your body will be burning extra calories from the strength training, and you may be able to run a little faster than normal due to the short distance run before each strength break. Give it a try or include any other go-to strength training moves!
A simple change in scenery can make all the difference in the world!
Make your run an adventure and research local trails, paths, or metroparks to explore near you. Exploring new locations can bring a new thrill to running that you may not have experienced if you stick to the treadmill or the same path around your neighborhood. Be sure to do your homework ahead of time; research the path, the distance, and whether or not there are drinking fountains close by.
Train for a race!
You can find local races of all distances; 5K, 10K, 15K, mini and half marathons, full marathons, and so much more! Themed races are popular right now, too. Zombie races, color runs, charity races, and everything in between can help motivate you to get moving and have a good time! There are also plenty of running groups that focus around training for a local race. Check out running stores in your town and ask if there are any local groups training for anything upcoming. With the new motivation to improve your running, a goal in mind, and new friends with similar interests surrounding you, training for a race is one of the best ways to mix it up!
Music makes a difference.
If you’ve been hitting “play” on the same old playlist for quite some time, or you can guess which song is coming through your headphones next, it’s time for a change! The right tunes can increase your speed and push you through that extra mile. Make a new playlist each week to keep your brain guessing and looking forward to new songs. A great resource that lists songs based on your desired run pace is jog.fm. Many fitness sites and magazines offer free or downloadable playlists. You can also skim through iTunes top hits to get ideas for what to add to your list. Browse through some new songs and update your tunes before heading out on your next run.
Running will always be a free, fun workout. So, do what you need to do to keep things fresh and exciting each and every time you lace up and head out the door. Your body will thank you for the good-looking benefits and your brain will be happy you beat the boredom!