Winter Running Builds Toughness

Have you seen those bad-ass runners that hit the streets rain or shine, 52 weeks a year? They’re tough as nails and they should scare the crap out of you. Those men and women are true runners. They have the guts of Steve Prefontaine and the grit of John Wayne.

Toughness comes with conquering your fears and believing in yourself. Toughness is a result of early morning runs, late night runs after a long day at work, and heading outside for a run when everyone else looks for extra blankets. Don’t fool yourself, you’re capable of far more than you think you are.

Mental toughness is spartanism with qualities of sacrifice, self-denial, dedication. It is fearlessness, and it is love. -Vince Lombardi

It’s hard to leave the comfort of your home and head out into the cold, dark night. But, if it was easy, it wouldn’t mean as much. Each time you complete a training run, you’ve notched another victory and become just a bit tougher.

New Hampshire Boston Marathon

Music helps. I like to crank up the tunes while I get dressed for my run. It’s become a ritual. Tights, long-sleeved layer, wool socks, an outer shell, Vaseline on the bridge of my nose and cheeks bones, hat, mittens, and running shoes.

The first mile is a bitch. But, I hit my stride in mile two and start to enjoy myself. Passing quiet homes with the blue light of flickering televisions, I can’t help feel a bit superior to my plodding and lethargic neighbors. Breath in, breathe out.

By the time I reach home, the freezing temperatures feel comfortable. I take off my hat and walk around outside until I begin to cool down. Entering the house, I’m greeted by smiles and barks and the smell of good food. I walk through the door feeling like a new man. Calmer, more confident, and at peace with the world.

The spring racing season is just a few months away. I’ll be ready. Will you?

Resolve to Run This Year

[dropcap]N[/dropcap]ew Year’s resolutions are like drunken promises. They sound wonderful, but they usually end up being forgotten or discarded in the light of day. The trick to making a good New Year’s resolution is to choose something that is both audacious and attainable.

Forget about losing weight, exercising more, or eating healthier. Those are just happy thoughts and daydreams. Instead pick something tangible with an outcome that can be measured and quantified. Make a life change that will help you improve all of those things. Run.

[bctt tweet=”Resolve to Run This Year! #happynewyear #2017″ username=”saltyruns”]

Runners eat healthier, sleep better, weigh less, and exercise more because they have to. Who wants to eat a pile of greasy, heavy food after running 3 miles? Nobody. Will you sleep better after running for an hour? Heck, yeah. And, weight loss? It comes with the territory. You’ll drop a bunch in just the first month alone. The best part? It’s addictive.

Runners World Half Burfoot and friends

Beginning runners see a better version of themselves emerge as progress. Milestones fly by like the dotted lines in passing lanes. One mile, two mile, three miles, your first 5K… Pretty soon you’re hanging out with a bunch of new friends wearing spandex, giving each other high-fives, and guzzling sports drinks in a post-race euphoria fueled by endorphins and pride. Pride in yourself and everything you’ve accomplished this year.

Happy 2017! Start with a Practical Running Plan for Beginners