“The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.”
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)
This is one of my favorite ‘inspirational’ quotes. It speaks volumes about the power of the mind and the benefits of positive self-talk. We sometimes talk ourselves into and out of multiple life situations, but Emerson brings a level of clarity by identifying we own the process. We become what we decide we want to become. Simple enough!
One area I use regularly with this process is my running program. In the past I would say out loud “I’m not a runner” and wondered why my running program never provided the results I thought it would. Using Emerson’s words created a mental adjustment, so now I leverage my runs to recharge mentally and generate positive outcomes for my Walk into the Future.
The physical benefits of running include:
- Weight loss
- Increased endurance
- Stronger lungs
- Lowered blood pressure
- Muscle toning
Have you thought about the ‘mental’ benefits of running?
A running program can be used in a therapeutic way also.
Had a hard or challenging day at work? Try going for a run to clear your head and generate positive thoughts you can leverage later. It is very hard to hold on to negative thoughts as you run your troubles away. You may find yourself generating new ideas once you remove the clutter of the day during your run.
Some runners identify the concept of a runner’s high while putting in the miles. Endorphins are nature’s home-brewed opiates that act a lot like morphine (Runner’s World). The chemical response running provides can help adjust your mood and put a smile on your face. The release of endorphins is an extra benefit when I run and keep me looking forward to my next race. Runners are a naturally happy bunch and you always can find them smiling and drinking beer at the finish line of most races. The endorphins and the sense of completing a challenging run may contribute to most of these smiling faces.
Running can also be used as a stress reliever. The boast in serotonin levels can provide a relaxing and calming affect as you run your problems away. It is extremely tough holding on to daily life pressures while also tackling a hill during your run. Your full physical and mental attention quickly turns to help you get over the next hill or cover the next mile marker. Your troubles don’t magically go away but they don’t seem as important while out for a run. Run consistently and you will start to find running as a physical and mental outlet.
What other transformative and therapeutic benefits can running bring? Thanks!