Breaking up a long run

Sometimes the thought of my long run can be daunting. Over the years I have found ways to make my long run a bit easier on myself mentally and I want to share them with you!

I have a long run of 17 miles tomorrow and right now it is a little daunting to think about. I know I have to run it because it will only help me prepare better for the Des Moines marathon next month.

I run because I love it, so I also need to remember that. I am choosing to run this marathon, no one if forcing me to!

Here are a few tricks/ideas that work for me to help me out with my long run:

1. I plan my route out the night before. Doing this helps me visual my run for the next day, as well as helping me during the run. If I know I run past a park during the last five miles, I get really happy when I see that park!

2. Break the run up into smaller segments. I tell myself I am running six miles, getting a drink of water at home, running five miles, getting a drink at home, then running four miles, getting a drink at home, and then I just need to run a simple two miles. It really helps me! I don’t think about this huge run I have to do, I look at it as small, easy runs. I love to play mental games with myself while I run.

3. Water breaks! This kind of ties into reason #2, but make sure to take water breaks! Being hydrated is so important. I personally hate wearing a water belt or carrying a water bottle, so stopping at home not only breaks up my runs, but it also serves a great purpose for getting hydrated. I make sure to hydrate with Nuun once my run has surpassed 60 minutes (especially in the heat).

4. Get excited!! I am currently watching Fashion Police (and typing this) and I just keep reminding myself that tomorrow’s run is going to be AWESOME! This helps with my mental state before I leave my house. If I leave in a good, optimistic mood, my runs always go much better.

5. Reward yourself! I love a good positive reward, maybe its the teacher in me, but it really helps. I usually don’t buy myself a reward, its more of “oh you have earned a lazy day watching chick flicks”, but this time I did buy some sweatpants from Oiselle. They came in the mail yesterday and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them! I tired them on, but I am saving them to wear until Monday for my lazy day.

6. Lay your clothes out the night before. I do this for every run, because it saves time. Okay, maybe it saves a minute, but I still do it. It is just a part of my “getting excited” process.


Those are the main things I do in preparation for a long run, number 2 being the most important (for me). I’m sure I have posted something very similar to this before, but it never helps to re-share ideas to get us through those long runs!

If you are running distance this weekend I hope it goes great! I have Monday off from school so you can expect me to be wearing my new sweats and being super lazy!

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