Fitness You know that feeling when you go up a couple of flight of stairs and you are out of breath? Well you shouldn’t know that feeling, if you do you are out of shape, sorry. Running could be a way to get into shape. Running is such a great way to track your fitness – maybe run 3km in 25 minutes Day 1, then after a few more runs try it again. Hey presto you have run 3km in 24 minutes, congratulations you are fitter. This kind of approach can lead to obsession and you can find people running marathons and ultra-marathons. It is so obvious that humans should run yet humans are also great at finding excuses not to run. If you can’t run then walk, get moving, your body and your mind will thank you for it. I find excuses sometimes not to run, I am tired, my knees are sore, I am too busy, there is nowhere to run, but I know that is a lazy part of me speaking. I must plan a run; a spontaneous run tends not to happen. Run up and down the stairs in your building if you can’t go outside, I have done this. Decide this week to run or walk once, pick a day and time that suit, write it down, and do it. Don’t reward the ‘lazy you’. ‘Lazy you’ forever wants you to be a slob in bed.
Exploring Running opens the world. When you go for a run you are free to explore areas cars, buses and bicycles cannot bring you – beaches, forests, mountains and trails. If you are lucky enough to travel for holidays running can open a door to the beauty of a new place. Tourist bus trips to the local sites are let’s face it – boring. Queuing to take photographs that you have already seen on Instagram is always a disappointment. The constant harassment to buy something also becomes a chore. The wonder is removed by the crowds and the fact you have already seen the sight on your screen. When you explored when running you take the path less traveled, you run where your eyes take you, you don’t take pictures you take memories. No one is there to guide you, you are free.You tell the stories of what you have seen and experienced. The flocks of tourists have nothing to say just the usual pictures to show, the runner/hiker/walker has a unique path traveled, that is what life is about, travelling your path. Forget the obvious sights and explore the world around you, it is amazing. Next time you travel bring your running shoes.
Privilege Run because you can. Everyday remind yourself how lucky you are. For readers who are physically healthy enough to walk and run, you are lucky, remind yourself of this. How many people in the world do not have the ability to run and would love to be in your shoes? You are privileged to have the ability, do not take it for granted. If your job allows you to have free time in the morning or evening you are also privileged. Many on this planet do not have the luxury of free time, working all day only breaking to eat and sleep. Get up early and go for a run, skip your time scrolling through the mind-numbing apps and go for a run, replace TV with a run, these choices will improve your mood and your life. Be grateful for your body and your life, it is time to stop taking it for granted.
Events There is a strong and healthy community in running. Everywhere you go in the world there are running clubs and events to keep you motivated to achieve. There is everything from fun runs to ultra-marathons. At these events you meet people, you make friends and you share an experience. You don’t need to be wealthy to train for events although some do cost a bit of money. If you like t-shirts, participation medals and chip timers you can spend some money and enter an official event. If this is not for you then join free running clubs who will have meet up runs and events that are more relaxed. There is something for everyone when it comes to running. If you haven’t reached the running stage yet join a walking or hiking group. There are meetups, clubs and groups all over the world, just search your local area online. Events have helped keep me motivated when I am feeling the laziness in me kick in, I enter an event, maybe a 5km run just so I have something to aim for. Exercising shouldn’t be a chore, with the goal of an event on the horizon it will keep it interesting and exciting. The competitive part of you may want to beat your previous best time or achieve a new distance covered.
Satisfaction With the completion of any exercise comes satisfaction. The satisfaction of finishing a run is a feeling I hope you have had in your life. The endorphins will flow through you, this is your bodies way of thanking you for getting off your ass and being awesome. This feeling is for you to enjoy, it is a feeling far more satisfying than any app on your phone will ever bring you. When you build on this satisfaction you become truly proud of your achievements. Some are happy just to look in the mirror and smile because they are satisfied with how far they have come; others will push themselves to the limit and run extraordinary distances before fully satisfied. I for one am always proud of myself when I go for a run. Go for a run, you can, you should, you won’t regret it.