As someone who has run pretty consistently for over a decade now, I’ve learned a thing or two about running. While I know now that running is quite the addiction, there are days, in fact, that I don’t want to run. When I’m in certain places that don’t seem aesthetically pleasing, when it’s too cold, when it’s too hot, when I’ve maybe had too much fun; these are occasions when my need to run can be over sought by my need to be lazy and make excuses. While I was having one of these days after recovering from a long mountain trek, I realized that there is more to running the drudging through a simple, mindless jog.
Having not been training for a while, running has become that of a hobby. While some days it is easy to get up and go running, other days it seems like a burden. Though my legs still burned from hiking a few days prior, while “relaxing,” in Senggigi on the island of Lombok in Indonesia, I decided it was time to go on a run.
I had partaken in some beautiful runs in the less dense southern area of the island, but although Senggigi may be small, it is crowded and hot. On top of that, the roads seemed to all be paved, not linking with smaller side roads made of dirt. These elements, on top of the fatigue, made this run a struggle.
While most of us can pull off forcing ourselves through a monotonous run a few times a week if necessary, what this surprisingly beautiful run in Lombok reminded of is that changing scenery, and giving yourself something to look forward to, helps training. What started out as a hopeful five miles turned quickly into eight as I found a hidden trail that led to a little know trail to a cave waterfall. The path turned form pavement to dirt, and the rolling hills and converge from the sun were an unexpected push to help me run longer and harder.
While I’m not saying every day has to be done on a beautiful trail, giving yourself something to look forward to while running helps you train harder. Those who run the same trail over and over can easily become stagnant, and get stuck in a routine. The toughest bodies are the ones who get curveballs thrown at them. Adding some spice to your run not only fosters enthusiasm to train, it also gives you the push you need to extend the training even further.