5 tips for more variety in training.

Man is a creature of habit, and this is especially true for running. Sometimes they do the same lap at the same pace every week, completely forgetting the many different opportunities that running offers them. If you always train the same way, sooner or later you will lose the desire to run and your performance will stagnate, because your body constantly needs new stimuli and impulses in order to develop further. It is therefore recommended to vary your training plan every 6 to 8 weeks. These tips and suggestions will help you to diversify your daily training routine.

"It is recommended to vary your training plan every 6 to 8 weeks."

Tip 1 | Go new ways

Having a regular route like this comes in handy. You know every pothole and every incline intimately, but at some point even the nicest route becomes a dull routine. You can break your old running habits easily, though, by exploring a completely new route. Road runners can explore forests, fields, or at least the nearest park, and die-hard trail runners should venture into the urban jungle. If you want to improve your performance, you should also look for more challenging routes with new elevation profiles, such as a steep mountain trail or a city trail with lots of stairs - even if that means you can't start running right from your front door. A short journey by car or bike can be well worth it. If you don't want to leave your regular route, or if you are very limited in space, you can run your loop at least once at a different time of day and in the opposite direction. As simple as the change may seem, it creates completely new visual impressions and physical demands.

Even on vacation, there are plenty of opportunities to explore new paths. Why not combine a city trip with sight running? Many metropolises can already be explored on foot. You prefer beach vacations? Then a beach run is a good option. Barefoot running in soft sand is an effective workout and really fun!

Tip 2 | Change of pace

If you want more variety in your workout, you should change the pace more often. Possible alternatives to monotonous continuous running are, for example, the so-called driving game (Fartlek method) as well as interval and crescendo runs. While the speed of interval training is accelerated and decelerated at fixed intervals, the duration and speed of tempo runs can be varied to suit your mood. Short trotting breaks are interspersed between the individual load passages for recovery.

If you already have very good basic endurance, the crescendo is an effective way to intensify your training. This increase run can be performed time- or pulse-oriented, whereby the speed is increased in long intervals until the targeted maximum speed is reached.

On the other hand, if you have made it a habit to always run at full throttle and constantly train at the limit of your performance, you should take the time to relax and consciously run only according to your feeling, without constantly looking at the heart rate monitor or stopwatch. This can also be a challenge! Meditative running techniques such as chi running or yoga running can help you achieve more composure and mindfulness.

Tip 3 | Alternative training

Optimal training involves more than just varying the running distance and pace. Complementary coordination and strength exercises are very important to avoid one-sided strain and injuries, but are simply forgotten by many runners. You don't have to go to the gym or buy expensive training equipment, because many exercises can be done without much effort using your own body weight. Want a few examples? You can take on a trim trail, balance over tree trunks, do pull-ups on a branch, push-ups on a park bench or go walking. Small exercises from running ABC are also perfect. Alternatively, you can try a completely different sport - whatever is fun and varied is allowed.

Tip 4 | Run together

You always run alone? Then look around for a training partner or a running group that has a comparable performance level. A running partner can give you new impetus, motivate you and help you correct small mistakes. Good places to start looking are local running clubs and associations as well as social networks. You can also get fresh input and new motivation by exchanging experiences with like-minded runners in Internet forums and online communities.

Tip 5 | New challenges

If you no longer see a challenge in your everyday training, you should take part in a race every now and then to create new training stimuli. The selection of events and running sports events has never been greater than it is today: In addition to classics like fun runs and marathons, there are now plenty of new and exciting competition formats, from obstacle and survival races to trail and mountain runs to crazy themed runs like the Color Run or the Zombie Run. It doesn't matter if the focus is on athletic performance or the fun factor. The only important thing is that you remain open to new things and leave your comfort zone from time to time. That's the only way you'll be able to surpass yourself again and again and simply run away from boredom!