Running is one of the easiest and most effective ways to keep yourself fit and healthy. As kids we were natural runners as we needed an outlet to burn off all that excess energy that kids have.
When we grow up we tend to lose the running habit, unless someone is chasing after us. For many of us we spend most of are time sitting at a desk staring at a computer screen. Rather than burning energy those excess calories are converting into fat, which we are depositing around our stomachs, hips and thighs.
If its been a while since you last ran then, it is wise to take it easy at the start. It is not a good idea to rush into running a mini marathon as this will do more harm than good. Take it slowly and gradually. If your body is not use to running then, the best way to build your endurance is to start walking everyday. Start with 15 minutes a day and gradually increase your pace until your walking at a brisk pace for 30 minutes a day. If you can maintain this for 4 weeks your body will be in better condition to take on the extra exertion needed for running.
I am not a fan of long distance running. In my opinion it can do more harm to your body and health over the long term. That constant pounding on the knees and joints plus the long term exertion on your cardiovascular system can actually weaken your body. Recent research has shown that a more effective and safer way of building your strength and stamina is to do short periods of moderately intense aerobic exercises like running or walking for 30 minutes a day for 5 days a week. Even light activities around the house such as running up and down the stairs, gardening or a brisk walk with the dog can have enormous positive effects on your health and well-being.
So, why should you take up running, I hear you ask. Well, running has many benefits and below are just a few of them:
- Lose weight by burning of those excess calories.
- Reduce your chances of getting heart disease.
- More energy and agility.
- Strengthens the muscles in the lower body.
- Escaping the confines of the house for the sunshine and fresh air.
- Its free, no need for a gym membership.
Invest yourself in a good pair of running shoes and get out there and start running like you were a kid again.