Reasons to Run

2 Apr

Running is a sport that brings me calm, keeps me in shape, and allows me to set and achieve (hopefully:)) personal goals.  This post is dedicated to my dear friend Katie.  Just yesterday she was saying, “Well, running is free.”  But pretty much stopped there on her reasons to run.  After our conversation, I got to thinking about why I run – or why someone should consider running.  So if you’re looking for some motivation to start or just want to reflect on why you currently run, here are my top 25 reasons to run.

  1. It’s free!  Well sort of, you do have to buy some quality shoes, an ipod maybe or some clothes…but it is a relatively inexpensive way to exercise.
  2. It’s relaxing.  This one has an asterisk…it’s relaxing once you’ve been doing it awhile.  And believe me, it can take a while.  It took me about a year after a break from running to enjoy it as a “relaxing” activity again.
  3. Cardiovascular health.  It keeps you in good cardiovascular shape.  My lungs will attest to this.
  4. It can be social.  I’ve had amazing runs out with friends or coworkers – running can be an awesome way to socialize (while working out, talk about efficiency!).
  5. It can be you time.  On the flip side, you can enjoy running to just think, ponder, and zone out.  It allows you a bit of quiet alone time.
  6. Musica, musica!  It’s a great way to catch up on music.  I love listening to new music or Pandora to hear new jams.
  7. Goals.  Running is an awesome way to make small goals and work towards them.  No matter where you begin you can always have new goals.  Whether it’s pace, distance, or just number of times per week, you can always make a new challenge.
  8. Racing is fun.  Whether you like the medals or the free food at the end, racing is pretty cool. It makes me feel like a real athlete, practically an Olympian.  I mean, right?
  9. “Free” t-shirts.  Okay so you really pay for them, but somehow on race day it feels like ‘oooo a free tech shirt!’  Some of them turn out to be pretty awesome.
  10. Participation trophies aka medals.  It’s one of few places you can get a medal just for participating.  It’s like t-ball trophies…for adults!
  11. General fitness.  It’s possible to get into pretty decent shape running.  Like I sure can wear this dress fitness.
  12. Vitamin D.  Running is an awesome way to spend some time outside in the daylight.  I find the extra dose of vitamin D particularly helpful in winter.
  13. Runner’s bond.  Yep – there is a definite bond.  When I hear someone is a runner, suddenly it’s ohh you’re a runner! 
  14. It’s challenging.  Let’s face it, running is hard. Being able to do it genuinely feels like an accomplishment.
  15. You can be proud of it. Because it is so challenging, running is something to really be proud of…or at least I am :)  Gearing up for my long run I will  silently feel proud of myself all day for getting that distance in.  What a boost for mental health!
  16. It’s simple.  Not simple in the actual act of running, but simple in terms of just needing yourself and a road.  Basic.  Simple.  No gimmicks.
  17. It’s rewarding. You put time into it and you will get something back.  Whether it’s toned muscles or better health or a faster pace, you get a return on investment.
  18. Running can be a family affair!  I’ve attempted to drag my sister and brother into running…it’s something we can all do together.  And someday if I have children I’ll drag them into it too!  Themed races or 5Ks are great ways to get people introduced. How neat to have a fitness related activity to all do together!  So much of our culture centers family time around food (Just think of holidays…Thanksgiving, 4th of July etc.) that it’s great to have running as an alternative activity.
  19. Stress Reducing.  Running can be very calming in itself – but exercise in general is a huge stress reducer.  Feeling tense?  Go out for a jog.
  20. Potential.  I love the idea of pushing my body and seeing my potential.  That’s an empowering thing!  It’s one of those, “If I don’t push myself now, when?”  I’m not getting any younger. What can my body really do?
  21. It’s convenient. Because running requires essentially no equipment (besides sneakers) you can do it anywhere.  It’s easy to plan around travel schedules or busy weeks.  Some weeks I end up running over lunch or early in the morning, and occasionally late at night.
  22. It’s great bang for your time bucks.  Running is a top calorie burning exercise, burning about 100 calories per mile.  If you’re going to put in time to work out, why not go for something with a great return?
  23. Self-esteem.  Running can make you feel pretty darn good about yourself.  Whether it is meeting goals, losing weight, or just the endorphins from exercise running will have you feeling more self-confident in no time.
  24. Purpose-oriented training.  Whenever I struggle to stay in the habit of working out regularly, I sign up for a race. Every workout has a purpose and the ‘training’ aspect of it keeps me coming back for me.  I’m not just running, I’m training.
  25. Improved overall fitness.  This one is huge.  I love when I’m in good running shape because it translates to so many other aspects of my life.  Suddenly I can climb stairs faster, I can carry in my groceries more easily, I’m happy to go on a long walking tour, and I’m prepared if I’m suddenly getting chased (you never know when you might need this one).  If for no other reason to run – remember you will be ready to outrun zombies should the need ever arise.  That’s preparation.

Hope you’re feeling motivated to lace up those sneakers.

Happy running!

-Kelly

Why do you enjoy running?  What’s your favorite reason to run?

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4 Responses to “Reasons to Run”

  1. Ani Danelz April 2, 2013 at 12:19 pm #

    Great list! So many wonderful reasons to get out there, especailly now that the weather is finally starting to get a bit nicer!!

    • racesrepsramblings April 2, 2013 at 12:23 pm #

      Thanks! And I’m in total agreement about the weather – the winter has seemed so long. I can’t wait for summer runs :)

      • Ani Danelz April 2, 2013 at 12:24 pm #

        Me too! I love waking up at like 6am to do a long-run before it gets too hot in the summer. Morning runs will always be my favorite and the summer is the only opportunity I have to do them!

        • racesrepsramblings April 2, 2013 at 12:29 pm #

          Thankfully we don’t have to wait too much longer for those mornings! :) Finally!!

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