The magical beast that is running Mojo. It seems to enjoy spending time with us but then suddenly decides to wander off for a while.

Here’s your starter for 10: Why do you run?

There are the usual answers to this question, such as:

For me it’s to see how far I can really go. Each time I’ve tried a new distance I’ve thought at the end of it there’s no way I could go faster or further. In the early days this was simply down to a lack of training. I started off with 10km then went to half marathons then marathons and next year I’ll be venturing in the ultra world. I also just love to run.

Whatever your reason is I’m sure you’ve all gone through the highs of having the running mojo and equally the lows of losing it.

Here are my top 5 tips to make sure you find that mojo again and keep hold of it.

1, Set a goal:

I find that there’s always motivation to get out there if I’ve got something to work towards. For me it’s the marathon and if I don’t put the time in during training I will get found out during the race. (This has happened to me three times). Don’t get me wrong it’s always nice to go out for a run that isn’t ruled by a plan or a set time or distance, but on the flip side if you start thinking oh well it doesn’t matter if I don’t go out today there’s nothing coming up. That will start to snowball and you’ll find it harder to get going again.

2, Mix it up:

This applies to training sessions and routes. If all you do is the same route at the same pace every time, then of course it’s going to get boring. Try something you haven’t done before. Hill reps, speed intervals, strides, go to track, find a new route, go somewhere else to run i.e. a bit of Parkrun tourism. Change your distances. Push a little bit further than you have before.

3, Go and support:

There’s nothing like watching other people run to make you want to run. Find something like a half marathon or marathon to go and watch and cheer on other runners. Make a sign, take some sweets, dish out the high fives. It’s great fun and inspiring to see everyone, plus your support will also mean the world to the runners. Remember the last time you were in a race and it was the crowd who kept you going, return the favour for someone else. I guarantee after you’ve been to watch a race you’ll be looking to sign up for one as soon as you get home.

4, Step back and look at the bigger picture:

We all run because we love it, however when the mojo has gone we often question if we do still love it. Ask yourself the question at the top again. Why do you run? We all go through the tough times of feeling tired, can’t be bothered or just don’t want to go. Step back for a minute and have a look at the bigger picture. Have you been training too much? Are you burning out? Is work really busy? There are plenty of ways that ‘life’ can get in the way. Don’t worry about taking some time off to recharge. You won’t lose all your fitness overnight. Remember the good times, what was different then as opposed to now?

5, Find out what works for you:

The tips here are what has worked for me. At the end of the day everyone is different. What works for me might not work for you. Don’t compare yourself to others or try to do the exact same things they do. Usually to find out what works for you is a process of trial and error but that can be fun in itself. Try different things, talk to other people, see tip number 2 and mix things up. When you find that right combination of training, fuelling, kit, racing, or whatever it is the mojo will be back in force.

Ultimately the devil on your shoulder will always try to keep the mojo away. Don’t listen to him, secretly he loves running too, he’ll just never admit it.

written by

Geoff Ridout

Fire Officer from Birmingham

Age group: 40-44
Club: No

My Disciplines
Obstacle race Marathon Ultra marathon Ultra trail run

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