Happy Global Running Day!
Did you know that was even a thing? It totally is! It’s “celebrated” on the first Wednesday of June each year and is also called National Running Day.
And did you also happen to know that there are a slew of reasons to to love running? Well, I may be biased, but I sure think there are!
So in honor of this “special” day, I thought, “What better time to share a list of things that make running so great?”
And just so you know, #schoolsoutforsummer at my house, so this isn’t the most in-depth list! My writing time is a bit limited these days. 😉
Alrighty, in no particular order, here’s my happy list of 17 Reasons to Love Running. 🤗
1. You can do it just about anywhere
Of course you should always keep safety in mind, but you don’t need a gym, a special field, a court, or any fancy equipment to run.
2. Running helps you maintain a healthy body weight
For me, I never want to make running about reaching a certain number on the scale. But if you are working to get to a certain weight for the right reasons, then running is a great way to help you get there. I believe in running for enjoyment and overall health – the physical changes are just a happy side effect.
3. Running improves your cardiovascular fitness
Runners are by no means immune to cardiovascular disease, but they have a great advantage over the general population. According to an article published in Clinics in sports medicine, entitled Cardiovascular aspects of running, “Echocardiographic studies show that distance runners have larger, thicker left ventricles than do sedentary controls; their hearts are more efficient than those of sedentary people, pumping a larger volume per beat.” Sometimes dubbed “the athlete’s heart,” this highly efficient organ in the typical distance runner leads to a slow resting pulse rate and a high maximal oxygen consumption.
4. Running gives you more energy to conquer the day
Yes! Yes! Yes! While you might get a little tired later in the afternoon if you wake up super early to run, there’s really no better way to energize the start of your day.
5. Running can be a gateway to other healthy habits
Improving your physical fitness through running will likely have a tendency to give you the desire to make better choices in other areas of your health. Proper nutrition will fuel you through your harder run efforts, as will focusing on making sure you’re getting enough sleep each night.
6. It’s an active way to spend time with friends
Sure, meeting for lunch or for coffee is a great way to catch up with a friend. But if that friend also enjoys running, why not occasionally spend time together that way instead? You’ll get to chit chat (as long as you run easy, of course) and enjoy the benefits of being active. And your run will go by faster too!
7. Running is affordable
I’ve mentioned this in previous posts, but you don’t need much to run. A sweat-wicking outfit, socks, and a pair of properly fitting running shoes. That’s it. While you can certainly start adding on the gear, you really don’t need ALL THE THINGS.
8. It’s a great way to meet new friends
Runners share a common bond with one another – their enjoyment of the sport. In the way that a shared faith can connect people who wouldn’t ordinarily spend time together, running has a similar effect.
9. It can give you quiet time away from everything else
If running is a great way to meet new friends, it’s also a fantastic way to get some peace, quiet, and alone time. And, let’s face it, sometimes you just need some a few minutes away from a busy day.
10. Running strengthens your muscles (all of them)
Betcha thought running only works your legs! Not true! Yes, the legs (which include the quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, tibialis anterior, and peroneal muscles) get a workout. But so do the muscles in the feet, as well as the core (which includes the gluteals, muscles in the hips and pelvis, as well as abdominal and back muscles). And, on top of that, running even strengthens the upper body muscles, including the chest, upper back, and shoulders. It’s a total body workout!
11. Running elevates your mood
The term “runner’s high” is for real. Except this is a healthy, natural way to boost your mood. Studies have shown that exercise triggers the production of endocannabinoids, which make you happier and more focused.
12. Running helps you sleep better
Being a runner not only helps you fall asleep faster, but it’s also been shown to improve the overall quality of sleep.
13. Running reduces your risk of chronic diseases
Various studies point to running’s positive effects on a handful of chronic diseases. The risk of developing cardiovascular disease, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke, is significantly reduced the longer a person has been running. A regular running habit has also been shown to reduce the risk of negative diabetes-related outcomes.
14. Running teaches you resilience
Running not only strengthens your physical muscles and your heart muscle. It also strengthens your mental, emotional, and spiritual “muscles.” You become more hardy as you continue to push yourself in training.
15. Running is a great way to see the world
Or at least your town or city. There may be scenic spots in your local area that you wouldn’t typically go to – but with running, maybe you can. And using running as an excuse to travel sounds like a great excuse to me. 😉
16. It gets you outside in all seasons
Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall…running lets you experience them all!
17. It’s just plain fun!
Enough said! 😄
I’m so glad I got to spend the morning getting a workout while running with friends. It was a perfect way to enjoy a beautiful sunrise and some great water views. And I think I checked off at least 14 of my 17 reasons to love running. 😉
How about you? Did you get a run in for #globalrunningday ?