"Top results are reached only through pain. But eventually you like this pain. You'll find the more difficulties you have on the way, the more you will enjoy your success."
- Juha "The Cruel" Väätäinen
"Chase after the truth like all hell and you'll free yourself, even though you never touch its coat-tails."
- Clarence S. Darrow
This week, The Weekly Beet reports on the incredible health benefits running has on the mind, the body, and the spirit. Mary Kent hits the pavement, running away from a seriously racing mind into the ultimate remedy called the runner's high!
Running away? Running to? Chasing something big? Running out of time? These days life has us all running in so many different directions, it's no wonder we're all bumping into each other! I know I'm not alone when I say I've been running my entire life, though obviously not exclusively in the exercise sense of the word. I'd say it was more like running in a never-endingK rat race called my self- created life. I've lived in Paris, NYC, and London and much of that time I spent running to work, running to catch a plane, running to make a new project happen, running to a fabulous party, or the most irritating of all, running my thoughts ragged. I spent time and energy living the rat race and somehow my mind always came in first place! I know I tried to slow down, but somehow I just kept running, questioning, searching, seeking, and, yes, running a bit more. We're all guilty of this type of 'off-road' running that happens smack in the middle of the sidewalks of our own minds. But, sooner or later, there comes a time when we give out of fuel for that kind of running and the universe purposely places a road block in our path to slow us down. And, we all know the road block that popped up in my life! Detours like these are blessings in disguise if we choose to see them as such. They are the language of the universe, which is always saying 'wake up - you're running around asleep'!
An English friend of mine once said to me in that glorious British accent of his, "Darling, there's two things in your life that you just must do. Write a book and run a marathon!" Thinking back on this moment makes me laugh hysterically because I did take his advice and started writing a book, which I do indeed plan to finish. But, there was something about the idea of a marathon that made me double over with utter panic. "A marathon? I could never do that," chimed that voice in my head. Remembering the words of my dear friend and knowing that I must always do that which I fear, I decided it was time to take the running out of my mind and literally place it on the pavement. And, as the universe would have it, a good friend, who happened to be a marathon runner, came to visit me in SC and escorted me out of my mind and onto Charleston's Arthur K.Ravenel bridge, which I had secretly wanted to run for a very long time. The bridge is only about 3 miles long, but for someone who hasn't exactly run in over a year it was challenging to say the least! But, I ran it and I was so happy, giggle-y, and laughing hysterically at my mini accomplishment, that I came back for more the next day and ever since we have been connected. In fact, I just ran it a few hours ago! :) Somehow, that little bridge run helped me face yet another challenge within myself and healed another piece of the puzzling experience of being me.
There's alot to learn about yourself while running solo. For starters, that silly voice in your head that keeps us from doing, being, and accomplishing our dreams always chime in at the beginning, but somehow it fades away and eventually that feeling of euphoria that keeps runners coming back for more kicks in. Once you get over the mental challenge that running can create, running can be one of the most therapeutic exercises! Whether we're out there chasing big dreams, the dollar, or simply a better way of feeling, I can now say that whatever we're after, running is an exercise that should absolutely be incorporated into every healthy lifestyle! It's a challenge to run long distances and one that must be slowly built up to over time. But, it's something that's worth the effort because the feeling at the end is super rewarding!
Here's why we can't get enough of running! Running:
- Helps with weight loss, as it is the top activity for burning fat.
- Maximizes lung capacity, keeping them strong and powerful.
- Fights the aging process.
- Reduces the risk of stroke.
- Reduces arthritis and swelling of the joints.
- Promotes gorgeous skin!
- Raises HDL levels (the good cholesterol) and helps lower blood pressure.
- Boosts immunity, creating a higher amount of lymphocytes.
- Reduces stress, depression, and
addictions by releasing the 4 major chemicals: Serotonin, Epinephrine, Dopamine, and Endorphin.
- Improves attitude and makes you happy!!! Works wonders for me!
- Helps train the mind, not just the body.
- Increases bone density, which prevents osteoporosis.
At the begriming and at the end of each run, it's super important to stretch, as muscles and tendons take a beating during the run. Stretching will help lengthen the muscles and promote flexibility.
Who knows if I'll actually go for a marathon, but I've learned alot about running in the past few weeks to write another Beet. Join us next week for the perfect runner's diet! We'll share with you some great tips! Want to run a marathon? Click here for a great training schedule. And, here for a marathon near you.
It's time to run away! Get out there and move that body! Don't miss a Beet. Stay tuned for next week.
PS. Check out Co-Founders, Jennifer Dyer Budin and Sunny Gray, of The Little Black Book for Every Busy Woman on Ladies Who Launch.
PPS. MK is wearing top by Mountain Hardwear.
PPPS. We love the book The New York City Marathon Cookbook by Nancy Clark.
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