Running for me is not just a sport. I spent my time and money to participate in this hobby and I do get the question like “What do you get out of running?”. The answer is not as straight forward as you might think. A quick answer would be that it is FUN. Or it keeps me busy. Or even to meet new friends. However i can divide it into 2 segments namely physical benefits as well as psychological (Less stress) benefits.
- Physical benefits of running
- Lowering your blood pressure by making sure the arteries stay nice and elastic
- Slows down the hands of time a little, as it relates to your aging process
- Regular runners are less likely to have bone and muscle loss
- Active runner will remain strong and flexible.
2. Psychological benefits for runners
- Running gives you a set amount of time to be alone with your thoughts. Only you and the open road.
- You can share your deepest thought with the road without being judge. The road does not care if you are unfit or little over weight. It does not care how much money you earn or even if you are jobless.
- The road can be you new best friend especially if you find it tough to make real friends.
- The road does not care what you are wearing. Or how good your hair looks like.
- Aside from simply being happier because you’re in better shape and feeling good, endorphins play a big role in these results. You might know endorphins as the “feel-good” hormones of the body. It’s an opiod chemical that the body uses to help quell pain. They also help slow the aging process, relieve stress and anxiety, and enhance the immune system. And you guessed it — running can release a flood of these endorphins.
You can see so many relation with your life on the road, especially during a race. Let me explain:
Sometimes in your life you will feel demotivated or overwhelmed. When you run a race you will get tired at some point where you feel you just can take the next step, but you learn through the race that you sometimes just have to take one step at a time and you will move forward. You will reach the finish line.
The most important relation of running to your personal life is the position you have in the race. During the race you will feel that everyone is just passing you (Especially during the uphills of life) and that you are getting behind. Fears that you will end up being last quickly goes through your mind. However as soon as you take some strong steps you start to catch up and even pass some of the front runners. Just as in life you will sometimes be behind in your life, but eventually catch up.
Life is a journey, and you must enjoy the ride.
Notes on Stress: There are two forms of stress: acute and long-term. Both can have some pretty nasty effects on your body.
- Acute stress comes on fast and typically doesn’t last very long. It can be triggered by anything, from an auto accident to bumping into an old flame you weren’t prepared to see. Most of your body systems are negatively affected by acute stress. Your brain, lungs, heart, immune system and digestive system all ramp up to deal with whatever trigger got you so worked up, whether it’s a real danger or just perceived.
- Long-term, or chronic, stress is even worse. Over time, your heart will have to work overtime, and your immune system will weaken and send your fat straight to your waistline. Arthritis, heart disease, diabetes and aging all take a hit when you live with chronic stress.
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