Running Exercise Benefits

The incredible benefits of running workout go beyond the realm of health. Running exercise tends to release endorphins (indigenous morphine produced by the body). Sounds great, right? Takes you on a trip and it’s free! Running in the outdoors in particular has been knows to cause this runner’s high, which can last for long periods of time – even days. I have felt unbelievably ‘high’ for a few days after a marathon, on several occasions.

Running Exercise – Effects on the brain

Running exercise has also been used by many, over the years, to treat clinical depression. After a study in2007, scientist said, “Exercise clearly has effects on the brain” and they are both direct and indirect. It’s possible, he explained, that the current findings reflect a direct effect of exercise on nerve cells in the hippo campus, or more general changes in the brain, like better blood flow or increased hormonal activity. (Very technical and sounds solid, right?). Now read on….

A natural compound (epicatechin) and exercise boost memory in mice and may help protect against cognitive decline in aging, says newly published research. “This effect increased further when mice also exercised regularly. The compound, epicatechin, is one of a group of chemicals known as flavonols and has previously been shown to improve cardiovascular function in people and increase blood flow in the brain. Flavonols are found in some chocolate.” Okay, so eat chocolate and exercise.

Running Exercise – To manage jet lag

Now that may sound far fetched, but it isn’t. believe me, in my last assignment at Motorola I had to travel a lot – 200,000 miles a year – so managing jet lag was important. I found that maintaining a regular regimen of running even a short distance, starting the day or morning after landing in a new time zone, helped me remain energized and perky, even without generous doses of coffee.

Most importantly, running exercise is a great way to make yourself incredibly positive and optimistic, as you measure your progress, and see yourself achieve some things that you never thought possible of yourself. At 40, I could barely run 1 km without being exhausted and out of breath. Over a six-month spell of winter in Chicago, I found I could run 5 km without stopping, and then I felt I could achieve anything. It gave me that supreme sense of confidence. I then went on to run my first marathon that year and have done 22 more since! And I am no athlete.

Running Exercise – Running with Team

While you run you make new acquaintances in the park, in a gym, on the road. As you greet them, they tend to reciprocate and, then all of a sudden, you have a few more friends. Or if you are running with people you know, you find soon enough that you are starting to bond on a different plane too. It’s a great way to build teams in companies, being the most egalitarian sport, as CEOs rub shoulders with new recruits and so on. Try it!

Talking about running workout getting you to bond with others on a different plane brings me to Warren Kay, chair of the Department of Religious Studies in Andover, Massachusetts U.S. where he teaches a class on the Spirituality of running. He has written a book on sweating yourself to enlightenment: Running workout : The Sacred Art.

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