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Guest Post: Five Simple Ways to Make a Run More Enjoyable

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Guest Post by Emma Green

In high school, I ran cross country and I found that I really enjoyed running if I looked for ways to have fun. Here are some of my tips for making a run more exciting!

1. Always run with friends! How can you have a fun run if you are off on your own, with no one to talk to and nothing to focus on but your own thoughts about how much your body is hurting? It’s impossible. For me anyways. Some crazy people actually LIKE running alone, but I do not fall into that category. In fact, if I don’t have a friend there to push and motivate me, I won’t get very far at all! I usually end up walking for part of the run without someone by my side. So friends are good, not only for keeping you entertained, but also for ensuring that you finish your workout.

2. Run at the right time and place. My favorite time to do our cross country workouts was at 6 am, and we did them at that time every weekday during the summer. No, I am not a morning person, and I complained my head off getting ready to go running that early, but the benefit to our team running that early is that there wasn’t any traffic out then, and the weather was perfect. Living in a fairly small town, we could run in the middle of the road most of the time. It was also really cool to watch the sun come up in the mornings, while running. I would recommend that if you do run this early that you wear clothing that won’t leave you freezing. I couldn’t do it without my trusty ear warmers.

3. Be creative. When you go out running on your normal routes, do things to make them more fun. Try and figure out a way to get through the fence to check out the watertank with your school mascot painted on it. When you run past sprinklers, alter your route at any cost to run through them. Army crawl up a hill. When your friend forgets her running shoes and has to run barefoot, join her barefoot. (Obviously not recommended for every run, but one barefoot run won’t kill you. Unless you step on a rusty nail. Or run across shards of glass.) Okay, use your judgement on this. But we made so many fun memories because of the crazy things that we did, and we all made it through high school alive. So have fun!

4. Find a motivator. Our cross country coach was a doctor, and he made this drink called Exceed. Now y’all won’t believe this. But that drink was the single most influential motivator for me. I still don’t know how to make this drink. Coach would never tell us. But if I had to guess, I would say that it pretty much was really salty Gatorade. And I am dead serious when I say that it tasted disgusting UNLESS you had just finished a hard work out. Then it tasted like sweet, sweet necter. Since I don’t know how to make Exceed, I would tell you to find something cool and refreshing to be your motivator. A slushie, ice cold juice, whatever it is that makes you drool. Have it all ready in the fridge before you start your run. During your last mile, you won’t think of anything else.

5. Slow and Steady. I was not a very fast runner-at all! But my coach always told me that if you stay true to your running form, it doesn’t matter how fast you are going. So even if you are “running” slower than you can walk, don’t stop the running! Keep it up and you will grow to love running, and won’t have the urge to walk nearly as often.

Emma Green is a student from Southern Utah. She is passionate about dogs, health, and food storage. You can visit Emma on her blog or on Google+. Feel free to contact her with any questions about Health or Food Storage at emmagreenie@live.com