The festive season is a great time of year for most of us and can either be a fantastic opportunity or hindrance for our run training.
- reduced hours of daylight
- cold and slippery conditions
- kids being off school
- food and presents to buy
- relatives to organise/entertain
The list goes on and there's no one way to address all of them but...
Does Family Know What You Want and Who You Want to Be?
There are a lot of runners who see running as something which just happens every week, regardless.
This may or may not be you and if it is then you'll have your life set up around your runs. Your family will know what happens and also have molded their life around your training times. While this is not something we can all expect from our family at the drop of a hat it should be something we slowly strive to achieve if we're ever going to make the festive season and other holiday periods work for us.
If you're constantly finding that your running consistency is interrupted during holidays then sort it our before the holidays start. It may mean you need to change the times you run but you need to know exactly what days and times you're going to be able to run around the various commitments which come with this time of year.
To some, this will read as if I'm suggesting you become selfish and expect everyone else to put you first, but I'm not. After all, running can be self-care and that's not selfish.
Give to Receive
If you're going to ask others to help you fit in your runs then you better be prepared to help others get what they want in return. There are plenty of things you can do to encourage your family to make the most of the festive period. Holidays are not about stopping the things you love, they're about giving people the opportunity to do more of what they love, with the support of family.
Talk to each member of your family to find out what they'd like to do. For some it may not be doing anything, so long as it's together. Some may want to watch festive movies, others to spend time with a new present. Brainstorm ways to give each family member time doing the things they love. This could be by themselves, with friends or as a family. The better you give, the happier they'll be for you to schedule in what you love doing.
Communication is The Key
Show your excitement about doing something different with your running through the festive season. Let them know about any fun events which are on and give them the opportunity to run with you, at their pace. If your family know you want to use the time off work to improve your running as well as spend more time with family then they'll be more likely to accommodate your training. The more you identify other's priorities and proactively work to ensure they are accommodated for, the easier life will be for all.