By Arlen Gargagliano
How can you possibly enjoy THAT?” is frequently a reaction I get when I tell people I like to run.
“Well,” I begin my explanation, “it’s a mind clearer.”
And this, my friends, is why I like to run.
When I run, I let the rhythm of my feet be the constant, while the sounds and sights vary. I put on tunes and let myself dive into them. The weather often envelops me, as do the views. At the same time, I start to sort things out.
See, that’s the beauty of running: you can do what you want to do to make it work for you.
Now I’ve been focusing on the mental aspects, while, as you may or may not know, there are also many physical benefits to running. For example, it can help you:
- Maintain a healthy weight;
- Strengthen your muscles; and
- Improve your cardiovascular fitness.
But you probably knew this already. So, for those of you are in the midst of tossing around ideas about your possible running routine, let me tout some other advantages:
- Running is portable—you can do it so many places;
- Running is economical—you don’t have to join a gym to do it; and
- Running is independent—you set your own schedule and timing, as well as goals.
And some tips for getting started:
- Be realistic: set a goal that you can achieve, say three times a week for 20 to 30 minutes—which is a perfectly good amount of time;
- As far as when, give yourself a time that works, say early morning—maybe after kids have gone to school—or whenever you can make that time for yourself;
- Don’t overdo it! If you feel pain, stop;
- Do warm-up and stretch afterwards;
- Do be safe and thoughtful in considering your location of running—as well as the time of day; and
- Don’t be hard on yourself; if you set a schedule, and miss a day, it’s okay. But then get back to it!
Remember, like any form of exercise, running only works if it works for you. After all, if you’re not a running fan, you could apply these same rules to a walking routine.
The key, after all, is that you gotta move!