As I prepare for the 10km annual Vancouver Sun Run, I decided to inspire you with 10 reasons to run. Running has made a great impact in my life and here’s why:
- Source of inspiration. When I’m out running in the world’s wonders, whether it be a bright sunny blue sky kind of day, or a mellow drizzly rainy day, I see the beautiful mountains, trees, and wildlife around me and I get inspired for whatever I’m doing (writing, art, and yes even homework).
- Empowering. After I’ve beat my times or pushed myself to run even though I want to stay home and curl up with a book instead, I feel amazing and accomplished. Running empowers me to feel healthy and to feel powerful to make decisions that are beneficial to who I am.
- Healthy. So as a source of physical exercise, running is a form of activity that engages your whole body (very effect for multi-taskers and those who want to work all muscle groups)! Setting a routine or a schedule to run, will help you hit the recommended times for exercising which lowers risk of heart disease, chronic illnesses, and among other health problems that arise from sitting at the desk or on the couch all day. Plus you don’t need to get equipment or get a gym membership! All you need is yourself and a place to run! You can run inside (on a track if you do want to be at the gym) or outside (at no cost and rain or shine so literally 24/7)!
- Trains you for…? Running can prepare you for other big obstacles in your life! From regular running, you can build a higher pain tolerance as the rush of endorphins from exercise are a natural pain killer.Athletes are known to have a higher pain tolerance due to this fact. Furthermore, running isn’t easy if you’re continually trying to better yourself, it trains you to work harder and push yourself harder to reach the next milestone.
- It’s like life. As a runner, sometimes I’m having an off day and right after a few minutes in, my back is in a lot of pain (due to my bad back pain) and I want to stop. But it’s about setting a small goal like that red car a hundred metres way and working to that. Then setting another goal and working towards that. In life, it’s hard to lose focus when you have a very big goal, so it’s important to set small goals to help you achieve the big goal. In another aspect, life is one long run. It’s about pacing yourself right so that you have the stamina to keep going instead of stopping.
- Stress Releaser/ Stress Reducer . When times are tough and I’ve overloaded myself with school and extracurricular responsibilities, it’s hard to cope. But one things that has been super beneficial in regards to me dealing with stress, is to run. Running helps me take my mind off things and just focus on breathing. I’m so focused on my next landmark to run to, and my breathing that I’m not calculating integrals or concentrating on thermodynamics or fussing over chemistry labs. Running is my little escape to let out all my frustration in running as hard and as best as I can.
- Bonding experience. Running is a great form of activity (well among other activities as well) that bonds people together. Whether it’s a race to raise awareness for a cause or fundraise for an organization, running brings people together. If it’s a first date (ehhh), or a get together for friends, or a family day kind of thing, running is something that is fit for any pace. For me, I love to run with friends and talk to them about life outside of school. Running races for causes that I care about and meeting other people who are also passionate about the cause and running (two birds with one stone) is amazing!
- Discovery. Running by yourself on the other hand leaves a lot of time for you to think (other than breathing). A lot of creative ideas, self discovery comes out from runs that you might have not thought about. Also, you’re not just discovering more about yourself, but also your surroundings. If you take adventures by running different routes, or through varying sceneries around your city/neighbourhood you’re having a cool adventure by discovering more about the world you live in!
- It makes you happy! Back to the endorphins, running isn’t just something that can build your pain tolerance and bring healthiness, but it makes you happy! *Happiness not necessarily guaranteed* But it definitely sets you to an increased chance of being happy due to all the endorphins, time away from work/school, and other family responsibilities. We all need some alone time sometimes away from it all!
- Bragging Rights. Okay come on, isn’t it cool to answer someone when they’re like *le gasp* you run? And you’re like hair flip and all, yep that’s right I run. Running regularly (not just a one time thing) is admirable because it takes a lot of dedication and perseverance to be able to stick to it. So that’s right, just like any other sport or activity that you dedicate a lot of hard work into, you get bragging rights (let’s not be pompous though)?