Top 5 Signs of Runner Burnout

Twitter is a funny world. I guess I should say, “world”. Complete strangers (mostly) share their lives, workouts, interests, secrets, fears, and triumphs on the Internet in 140 characters or less.

People follow each other's every virtual move. AKA stalk.

13,699 tweets? What the hell do I have to say that’s so important?

You can link your Facebook, blog, FourSquare, Vine, Run Keeper, Nike+ running, Daily Mile, MapMyRun, My Fitness Pal, and oodles of other apps to your Twitter feed. People can track your every move if you let them.

I actually like Twitter. The people I follow aren’t serial users or obsessive (at least, I don’t think they are) and I genuinely enjoy their quips and updates. As we approach Boston Marathon weekend, I’m seeing a trend in runners that I’ve noticed before, but not quite as much as right now.

Running when one clearly hates running right now.

What happens when it becomes YOUR punishment, too?

What happens when it becomes YOUR punishment, too?

More than one runner who is headed to Boston this week has confessed that their head and heart just aren’t in it. They’re all seasoned-ish runners who have surely defined themselves as RUNNERS, but they clearly no longer enjoy running.

What do you do when you just don’t feel like running anymore?

Even Snoopy feels like this sometimes.

I would say this person is experiencing complete and total burnout.

Top 5 signs of burnout:

  1. Running feels like a chore
  2. Every run feels hard & there’s rarely a “runner’s high”
  3. You come up with any excuse to drop out of races/workouts
  4. Races give you anxiety (more than usual, that is)
  5. Your heart isn’t in it anymore…and you know it
...at least, it should be. (Image courtesy of Runner's World & your inner child)

…at least, it should be.
(Image courtesy of Runner’s World & your inner child)

I want to say this to all the runners out there:

IT’S OK TO TAKE A STEP BACK FROM RUNNING.

Did you hear me? IT’S OK. It doesn’t take anything away from you or change anything you’ve done. If you aren’t feeling it, don’t force it. Forcing it will only make you resent it more.

Take a step back. Do something else. Try something new.

Don't be afraid you might like something else better.

Don’t be afraid you might like something else better.

You are not defined by only being a “runner”. You are so much more and can be anything you want to be, just don’t be afraid. Don’t be afraid to walk away from it until you miss it. Don’t be afraid that you might find something you like better.

You can always come back to it.

If you don’t love it, don’t do it. Life is too short to waste your time and energy doing something you hate.

Just a thought.

Now go out and run (or not).

PS. Pictures from the Kick Ass 5K must be received by me via email (runstrongereveryday@gmail.com) by midnight tonight to count toward the raffle. Get ’em in–I am loving all the ones I have so far!