Need a motivation boost? Start training for an event

I’ve always been a little better about exercising regularly when I’ve had an event to train for. Whether it was a 5K walk, a 10K run or a sprint triathlon, creating a training schedule and having an end goal took the guess work out of what I’d be doing tomorrow.

Color Run 3The training schedule also kept me from asking myself if I felt like exercising. Of course, there were days I needed to take it easier than planned, but I had my schedule to help me get back on track.

It’s time to use that tool again: I’m going to train for an event. And since I’ve got several trips planned this year I’m looking for events that will keep me active on vacation.

I’ve always wanted to walk a half marathon and that’s what I’m training for this time. You can choose any time of even to train for — a walk, a bike ride, a swim, a run, a combination.

If an event isn’t your cup of tea, or a certain event interests you but you can’t make it, train for the course instead.

The Marilla Trail half marathon race in Pennsylvania interests me, but since I don’t want to run it and I’m not sure I’ll be there in mid-October, I thought I might include hiking the course in an upcoming vacation.

For some people, the energy and excitement of an event is what gets them motivated. I like an event because there’s a set date to cross the finish line. But others focus on the experience of walking a certain route or trail.

Understand what motivates you — and use it to get on (and stick to) a training schedule.

Since I’m training for a half-marathon walk, I searched for a training program that was right for me.

My 12-week training program will be tweaked, rearranged, and extended to fit my schedule, plans, and current fitness levels. But it’s a great place to start.

Next, to find an event. There are lots of online resources available to find upcoming fitness events. For example, I found this marathon walking calendar, and a list of walking events at Runner’s World.

shawndraShawndra Holmberg writes about small things we can all do to live a healthier lifestyle. And she believes weight loss is a journey not a destination. Like any journey, weight loss has switchbacks, reduced speed zones, blind curves ahead, and a few fast lanes (yes, even on the Big Island). She also believes that a successful journey begins with small steps. Connect with Shawndra on Facebook or check out her blog.

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