A Bit of a Running Slump

I’m experiencing some, shall we say, ennui, when it comes to running lately. My motivation has gone out the window. The last two weeks, I’ve only run twice each week. I’m mailing it in a bit. I think there are a few factors at play here.


First of all, I’ve decided not to do another fall half marathon. I couldn’t justify the cost, and I didn’t want to chance hurting myself before Wine and Dine, which I’ve been looking forward to for over a year, and which cost me a fortune to arrange. Because I’m no longer looking at a PR attempt or even really racing a half this fall, I don’t really feel the need to be aggressively training. I’m just sort of mailing in some long runs and calling it good.

Secondly, this year has just been so cuckoo-bananas busy that I’m really resistant to “having” to do something, even if it’s something I technically enjoy. I resent having to run so many miles on a certain day. I resent having to spend additional time before or after work running when all I want to do is veg out in my PJs and watch Netflix with a glass of wine in hand. I’ve been enjoying snuggling my cats, making dinner with my husband, and seeing my long-neglected friends. It seems like I’d rather be doing anything else but running right now.

Thirdly, and I think least of my current issues, is that the days are getting shorter. When a few months ago I could have gotten up at 5:30 and done 4 miles before work, it’s now pitch dark at 5:30 am. And it’s also pitch dark by 7:30 pm, if not earlier. I don’t have a headlamp, or reflective vest, or any of those other tools that make running in the dark safe, which means that I don’t run in the dark. Which means that if I don’t run immediately after work or on my lunch break, I don’t run at all during the week.

Honestly, I don’t even feel guilty that I’m not running much right now. I’m still hitting Body Pump regularly, I’ve got tap class once a week, and I’m getting my long runs in, so I’m not a total wastrel. I’m just gonna let this wave of indifference ride, and I’m sure I’ll eventually find my motivation again. For now, I’ll just enjoy Netflix and wine.

How do you handle lack of motivation? 

24 thoughts on “A Bit of a Running Slump

  1. Movin' it with Michelle says:

    I think these breaks are SOOOOO needed for runners. For me, if I don’t feel like running and am not training for anything I embrace the time I get to spend doing all the things I neglect when I AM training for a race. Your motivation will return in time, just give yourself this time to BE. ❤

  2. veryrach says:

    It’s cool that you still have other things to keep yourself active. When I feel unmotivated I pretty much do nothing. I also have the issue of it being dark out and not running in the dark.. so I feel your pain on that! Usually when I’m unmotivated, I let it ride until I’m like “what the hell am I doing?? I need to get back out there” and then I go. haha

  3. Britt says:

    I think a break can be refreshing and restorative. Also, I go “naked” when I get in that mood. And by that I mean that I go without timing myself or having any kind of expectation. I don’t even put down an expected mileage. Just run. I have been experiencing the irritation from the lack of daylight in the mornings for running too, so I definitely feel your pain.

  4. allisonfiorini says:

    Everyone needs some downtime from running. I know I am feeling burned out for sure – and after my races are done I am taking a break. If I had not signed up for any races, I would be resting now. It’s good to honor your body and rest when you need it to avoid burnout – and like you said, you’re still being active, just in a different way! I think you have a great balance.

  5. SuzLyfe says:

    I think that your slump might be coming from the fact that you’ve really not had to keep yourself going beyond a month or so of dedicated running at a time (because of Chess and whatnot). I say press on, see if the nice weather helps pull you out, or leave it be and go back to your walks!

  6. Maggie says:

    I have also had motivation issues lately (I got a burst from running on the beach on vacation.) I hope Wine and Dine goes fantastic. It’s on my bucket list of races!

  7. charissarunning says:

    I’ve had my fair share of running slumps in the past. Sometimes you need to give yourself a break and other times it’s helpful to push through until the running gets easier and excites you again! Whichever the case this time around, it helps that you are being active in other ways too so maybe you do just need a refresher. Sometimes I like to choose a type of run I’ll have more fun with too to get me going again. For instance, I typically hate easy runs, so I tell myself I’ll incorporate little bursts of speed into the run if I’m really not feeling like keeping the entire thing “easy”.

  8. Fallon @ Slacker Runner says:

    I second so much of this, been in a running funk lately. It always happens this time of year. It gets dark so soon and the idea of the treadmill is numbing. I am trying to just keep putting one foot in front of the other. I have 3 race of half marathon distance or more in the next 6 weeks- what was I thinking?!

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