Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Why running is my saviour...

Runners get a lot of stick.  Heck, even I have to confess that I poke fun at myself every now and then for my 'sad' addiction to plodding the streets in Lycra.  However during my run today, which had the added bonus of some amazing Scottish scenery, I decided it was time to strike back and defend this pursuit which has given me so much.

Here's why it works for me - and (I hope) always will...

1. It fits round everything else.  I chose running as my form of exercise when the kids were young because it could be slotted into our crazy schedules.  Between the little 'uns, hubby's erratic shift pattern plus my own self-employed commitments, signing up for a block of classes just didn't make sense - I'd miss at least half the sessions.  With running, I can just go - whenever a window of opportunity presents itself.

2. I love the great outdoors. This is not the case for everyone but I truly love to be outside.  Allegedly, I can be quite grumpy if I don't get my daily dose of fresh air.  I realise that the gym has social benefits for many - plus the attraction of not getting caught in torrential rain - but for me outdoor trails win over indoor treadmills every time.

 
What do you mean you can't run when it's snowing?
 
 
3. It's cheap. I write this with my tongue firmly in my cheek.  Perhaps I should write that it was cheap in the beginning. As my running has increased, so has my wardrobe of fitness clothing and accessories.  For those on a budget though, apart from an initial investment in a good pair of trainers, running can be a very cost-effective hobby.
 
4. It's flexible.  Running can be done with friends, or through a club.  It can also be done on your own.  It can be competitive, or it can be purely for pleasure or general fitness.  It can be done on trails, hills or roads.  It can take the form of a half-hour, high-energy outing or a three-hour test of endurance and stamina.  Think running's boring? I hasten to differ.  If you want to, there are plenty of ways that you can mix it up.
 
5. It's good for body and mind.  I suspect that this is the real reason I keep at it.  Running has helped me to unravel work issues, let off steam after a tetchy day with the kids and preserve my sanity during the toughest of times.  Dealing with my father's terminal illness - and recent loss - is one of the most difficult things I've had to do. Running was my therapy.  It helped me release some of the anger I felt at the terrible disease that was destroying him. It also made me feel closer to him at a time when I knew he was slipping away.  My dad was a great sportsman and a huge supporter of all my own running efforts  - from cross country at primary school through to my first 5K as a mum.  Sometimes, when I'm out there, I can still feel him cheering me on.
 
Running's not for everyone - and I suppose it never will be.  But for this runner, the emotional and physical benefits are more than worth the flak from the non-running community.
 
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Shared on Works-For-Me-Wednesday (WFMW).

8 comments:

  1. I definitely think running is one of the best forms of exercise - I use it to clear my head or get out frustrations when I'm having a bad day...

    Dropping by from #PoCoLo
    Kat xx

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  2. I couldn't agree more, I actually went for my first outdoor run of the year yesterday ( we've had a lot of snow!) and it was fantastic! I don't mind treadmill running, but I much prefer to be outside. It's such a fantastic way to clear your head and get some real time to yourself x #PoCoLo

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    1. Yay for the return of better weather! Thanks so much for stopping by.

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  3. I love to run and wholeheartedly agree with all of the reasons you run. I always thought I'd be bored by running but it's great for letting your mind drift off and think back through the day. I'm not such a keen runner in the rain though! #pocolo

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  4. I use to run and then I got injured and I don't know how to go back. It is cheap and it is the only time that I can really really think.

    I miss running =(

    #pocolo

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    1. Sorry to hear about your injury :-( It's hard when you enjoy something and then can't do it. I used to get niggling hip pain but found some exercises online that really helped. I'm not sure how severe your own injury is but I really hope you can get back to it sometime. Thanks for commenting.

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  5. I'm not great with running - I prefer walking. I go through stages of it all the time as well! I really enjoyed reading how much you love it. Thank you for linking to PoCoLo x

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    1. Hi Victoria - thanks for taking the time to comment and for helping my little blog become a part of PoCoLo :-) Walking is great too, isn't it? It also has its advantages as you can go out straight after a meal without (hopefully) getting a stitch! x

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