Wednesday, 3 February 2016

3-2-1 and back in the room

11 Days after giving birth to number 4 (me not Mrs W)
I’ve been injured lately so I’ve hardly been able to run in 2016 at all. I finally went to see someone about my dodgy hip yesterday, and she gave me the go ahead to run 20 minutes per day. She didn’t say how fast I should run so, well, I went out and enjoyed myself a little J

I feel incredible. Not the elusive runner's 'high' necessarily, but, I’ve gone from feeling what you might call deflated over the last few weeks to being, well, back in the room.

I did a little experiment today. As well as running, I’ve been thinking about and talking to people about walking, and in fact I’m wearing a pedometer to monitor my steps. You know, NHS 10,000 step challenge and all that.

To run or to walk, that is the question.
It’s given me cause to ask myself what I’m doing here with this running lark. Do I want to get non-movers to simply move (walk a little bit, play ping pong – all good stuff), or do I want to encourage non-runners to run, or run better, stronger, further, faster? Why am I a runner and not a walker, what’s my raison d’etre, how can I justify helping people to run over helping them to walk?

I’ve walked lots today, but I’ve run for just 15 minutes. Honestly?, walking has done very little to excite me. On the other hand, after just a short burst of running I’m ‘back in the room’, awake, alert, connected, turned on by life again.

I did a little research (googled for 30 seconds) and came across Spark: How exercise will improve the performance of your brain. On Page 4 it says:  “to keep our brains at peak performance, our bodies need to work hard.”

So perhaps it’s about intensity. Running gets my the blood pumping, and perhaps it’s that blood-pumping intensity that makes me feel better, brighter, higher, stronger, more confident, more creative, and most importantly, more motivated for life. The physical benefits running are well known, but I reckon that the main benefits are the affects on the brain. When we run, the dirt of life simply falls away. 

The best
So in this very scientific little experiment, walking versus running, I can conclude that in terms of physical and mental benefits (please don’t ever try to separate the two), walking simply does not deliver. Taking public transport is good. Walking is better. Running is best. And we all want the best, right ;-)

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