So many of us can relate to the all-too-common scenario of wanting to get in shape, doing our best… but failing to stick with it long-term.
Ever felt like you don’t have the motivation? Or found it hard to stay accountable and consistent?
We’ve all been there at some point – be it diets or exercise.
And running is no different. We know that it’s a highly effective way to burn fat, tone up, and shed some extra pounds. But lacing up our shoes and getting out the door day after day is easier said than done.
Here’s the catch: there are 5 major mistakes most runners make that stall their progress and make running a lot harder than it actually is (yes, it can be easy!).
If you want to lose unwanted fat (and keep it off), then keep reading. Because what you’ll read next will determine whether you succeed or not. You’ll know exactly what to do to make your journey effortless – even if you don’t consider yourself a runner or tried and ditched running in the past.
#1 Mistake. Rushing into running without a plan
Imagine you’re in a city you don’t know very well. Let’s say you want to get to a specific place. Would you try and drive there without a GPS? Probably not.
Running without a plan is pretty much the same. You might reach your destination, but it’s highly unlikely that you’ll find the easiest, fastest route – or get anywhere at all.
Without a plan, the results will be inconsistent at best and non-existent at worst. Without seeing progress, you’ll begin to wonder why you’re bothering to invest energy and time into something that doesn’t seem to be working.
Chances are, you’ll soon get frustrated and quit altogether.
According to personal running coach Rory Thomas:
Rushing in without a plan is short-sighted and will most likely fail. If you’re someone who struggles with motivation and accountability, don’t make your life harder than it needs to be – consult a personal running coach. If you don’t have one, there are plenty of home alternatives that do all the hard work for you.
#2 Mistake. Choosing a running plan that doesn’t fit your lifestyle
Most training plans tell us that to lose weight and get fit, we need to exercise 4–5 days a week for at least an hour. According to them, you should “just” get out and do it, stay motivated no matter what, and never give up – or some other similar cliché.
But for most of us, that’s incredibly far from reality.
What if we struggle to find the energy and motivation after a busy day? Find it hard to keep at it and stay consistent? Or can’t find the time with work and family?
Does that make you a lost cause? Absolutely NOT.
None of that is really your fault. The problem is that one-size-fits-all running plans don’t take your specific needs and lifestyle into account, and push you too hard from the start.
End result? They’re simply impossible to stick with.
Instead of doing what we can in the amount of time we have, we assume that shorter workouts are a waste of time, so we skip them altogether. One missed run turns into two, then three, until we’re back to square one – feeling like we’ve failed yet again. And it’s all downhill from there.
Your running plan should fit your lifestyle, not the other way around. What’s key is figuring out how much time you really have and when – not how much you hope to have. Instead of creating more time for running, fit your runs into the time you already have. You don’t need to run for an hour to get results. The right running plan can make even 10 minutes count.
#3 Mistake: Getting trapped in the “all-or-nothing” attitude
So, you’ve been good all week, and then Friday rolls around.
Sometimes, it’s simply the weekend. Sometimes, it’s a birthday. Sometimes, it’s having friends over for dinner.
Suddenly, you find yourself thinking: “Well, I’ll just start again on Monday.“
Be honest. How many times have you set an intention to get in shape and started off strong… but then one missed workout turns into two, and the next thing you know, you’re setting a new intention to get in shape?
You’re not alone – we’ve all been there.
We often think that one slip-up means all our hard work has gone to waste. But that’s not true.
Getting trapped in the “all-or-nothing” cycle is all too easy – if we can’t stick to something 100%, we start feeling guilty, get frustrated, and eventually give up. Only to restart over and over.
But in reality, there’s rarely a perfect week when it comes to fitness – or anything in life, for that matter. There will always be bumps in the road – your plans will change, your kids might get sick, your boss might drop an unexpected deadline.
Running isn’t all or nothing. Seeing results and making progress isn’t contingent on doing it perfectly every single day. Getting close is what counts. So, if you can only squeeze in a few short runs, that’s OK. Something is ALWAYS better than nothing.
One slip-up isn’t the problem – it’s the chain reaction that follows. But you don’t have to go above and beyond to enjoy the myriad of benefits running has to offer. We’re often told that we should always do more, but if that gets in the way of you doing anything at all, then it’s no use to you. Find a customizable running plan that allows flexibility and adapts to you.
#4 Mistake: Pushing yourself too hard
There’s a common misconception that running – or any type of exercise – is always supposed to be hard work. So the longer you do it and the more difficult it feels, the more calories you’re burning and the more results you’re getting.
But nothing will derail an exercise routine faster than pushing through one grueling workout session after another – we know it all too well. Most of the time, it’s actually counterproductive.
There are a couple of reasons why you’re not likely to stick with it:
- Reason 1: If you’re a beginner runner and follow a plan that isn’t suited to your fitness level, you won’t be able to keep up, will view that as a failure, and be discouraged to continue.
- Reason 2: You’ll be miserable the entire time. So again, you’ll be discouraged to continue because naturally, we avoid things that are unenjoyable or feel like punishment.
“No pain, no gain” and “Go hard or go home” is an outdated – and highly ineffective – way of thinking about exercise. Running shouldn’t hurt, nor should it make you suffer.
And you don’t have to push yourself until you’re soaked in sweat or every muscle in your body aches to get visible results.
Start with easy, attainable goals so you can build up success. If you break down your runs into smaller chunks, you’ll make it more manageable and allow yourself to be more consistent. And we all know that consistency = dropping more pounds and better health long-term. So, find a running plan that’ll help you ease into it and adapt to you with time.
#5 Mistake: Following a mainstream running plan
With a bit of light research on Google, you’ll find endless running plan options. You’ll see thousands of weight loss transformations with tips and techniques on how to make it work for you.
Many people read a few articles, then try to get started on their own.
But this is a dangerous mistake. In 10 minutes or less, they find themselves tired and running out of breath. And so, they swear to never do it again.
That’s why most runners give up too soon – or don’t even start – to begin with.
While hearing what worked for others can help you figure out what to try, it’s almost never going to be exactly what works for you – because there simply isn’t anyone else like you.
A tailored running plan can really be the difference between achieving your goals or not. To give yourself the best chance of success, you should get a custom, professional running plan based on your fitness level, physical ability, age, weight, and overall health.Rory Thomas, personal running coach
Health and wellness are extremely personal. We’re often bombarded from all sides with articles, self-help books, internet commenters, and more, who all claim they know best – but it usually boils down to what worked for them.
We’re all different, and generic training plans can only take you so far – or nowhere at all. With personalized guidance that focuses on you, you’ll understand how your body works and know exactly what to do to achieve maximum results in the least amount of time – and make it easy at the same time.
How to Start Running, Actually Stick With It, and Lose Weight
The solution is a personalized running plan that takes your fitness level, age, weight, and health into consideration.
If your running plan is fine-tuned to your body, you will experience a dramatic transformation.
You will lose weight quickly and keep it off because you won’t have to push yourself through grueling exercise sessions to get results. You won’t need to look for motivation or rely on willpower because you won’t be tied to some unrealistic training plan that turns your whole life upside down.
If you follow a personalized running plan, you won’t only see visible changes quickly. It will also be pretty easy.
✅ It’s a running plan you’ll actually stick to because it’s tailored to your lifestyle and fitness level.
✅ It’s a plan you can follow any time of day – when life gets in the way, it adapts to you.
✅ You get detailed training instructions to ensure you’re getting closer to your goal with each run.
✅ You get focused warm-up and cool-down exercises to boost your performance and results.
✅ You get educational articles on injury prevention, nutrition, breathing techniques, and more.
✅ You get a progress tracker that helps you see the big picture so you know far you’ve come.