The Benefits Of Diversified Training

Photo: John Segesta

Any form of repetition can cause someone to burn out. Running is no exception.

We started a tradition at my house many years ago of pizza night every Friday night.  Sounds great, right?   The only problem was that it was the same pizza from the same place every single Friday night. And, don’t get me started on the leftovers!  It didn’t happen right away, but eventually I stopped looking forward to Friday pizza night.   Then it got worse.  I started dreading having pizza night at all.  I even stopped eating pizza on these nights and I ordered a salad instead. Finally, I stopped going to pizza night all together.  It took years before I would even eat pizza again. Imagine that!

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Where am I going with this? The point is that any form of repetition can cause someone to burn out. This remains true for running, biking, swimming, or any form of exercise.  It can be easy for someone to get caught in a repetitious pattern, as many people are drawn to activities that are convenient. Running can be especially repetitive, you need to figure out how to switch up the routine to keep yourself interested and excited. You may have a scenic three mile loop right outside your front door, it easy to maintain your running schedule, so you run it all the time.  Or, maybe you hate to run outdoors and you own a treadmill that you run on for an hour each day.

Ask yourself: Do you automatically roll out of bed, lace up the shoes and head out for the obligatory three-mile loop or jump on the treadmill?  Are you still as enamored with it as the first time you ran it?  I bet not.  Has your running routine become a chore or a necessary evil?   You have the power to get out of your repetitious rut and mix up the run.

As a runner, not only should you try new locations, but you should also try new surfaces and incorporate new techniques.  Better yet, throw in some cross-training as well to switch up your techniques.  I know, you are a runner, so you just run. Why would you take a spin class, hot yoga, or strength train at a gym?  This goes back to the old saying:  variety is the spice of life.  Varying your fitness routine is essential to become a well-rounded runner.  Here are four reasons why you should diversify your training and how to add a little ginger to your jog.

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