Running clears your mind and refreshes your hope
In these times, when for many of us one of the few acceptable reasons to NOT shelter at home is exercise, running is a great way to nurture your soul and refresh your spirit.
I wasn't a runner, in fact I hated it. But now I find it a great relief to run each day. When I'm stuck for an idea, or confused about where we are all headed in this coronavirus crisis, running really helps get back my perspective.
It can for you too.
After this advice I completed my first 10km trail run
At my age (72 this year), and having only been running for a couple of years, there are regular aches and niggles that come with the pleasure of running.
I consulted my podiatrist about pains in the balls of my feet and right hip, and she gave me some great tips which solved those problems.
No machines, no mirrors, no worries, not just running
I go to gym 3 times a week, but I also like training outdoors. Running 5km twice a week adds more than just fitness; it also gets me out into the weather and nature.
A little little bit of rain; a hot, sweaty day; wind pushing into your face; a new sandtrap on the trail; a family with a dog that you have to navigate safely past - all make you feel as if you are alive.
But it is not running that will give your fitness a big boost.
Most people outdoors are walking or jogging. There are a few runners, and also, rarely, someone adding in a bit extra - perhaps running up a ramp.
With a little bit of imagination, you can add in some training that will significantly boost your fitness.
It is free pure no-equipment exercise available to everyone.
I failed twice before
I've been trail running for 2 years. Before that, I hated running, especially at the gym when circuit training included running or the firefighter's beep test.
I built up to running 5km twice a week, but up to now had failed in my efforts to run 5km.
In my last effort, I failed at 8.8km. Not from lack or lungs but from the pain in the ball of my right foot, and right hip.
I hatched a new plan, and last Sunday in the early morning, I set out with new hope and determination - and patience - and recorded my first 10km. It was 10.4km to be exact - at an average pace of 5:21/km.
I'm pleased that I could do it. And not sure I will do it again.
Perhaps I need to slow down
I've been running for a couple of years and haven't yet made it to 10km.
That's a target I'd like to reach this summer (It's summer now in Australia). I can run quite strongly, despite my age, but perhaps that's the problem - I may need to slow down.
What do you think?
Learn the definitive biological answer
More than once, I've read articles claiming that walking burns as many calories as running. By observation, that's "obviously" untrue. If you're breathing harder when exercising, then you are burning more calories. We breath harder when we run.
But all is not lost! You CAN burn more calories walking than running. You just have to make sure that you are not comparing apples with oranges.
Each night I say "enough" but it doesn’t work
In the week before Xmas, I became curious about how it would feel to run every day.
The week of Xmas I ran 4km every day, and then all through January. Now, in February, I tell myself I'll stop, but I keep getting up and running.
I'm not sure why.
Struggling to make running gains? The secret to building your stamina is to not be confused by the experts.
If you have a running goal then you need to build stamina
I've found that there's often confusion about what endurance and stamina mean, especially in the context of running.
If you don't know the difference, then you can't train specifically for one or the other. Yet training for one or the other can boost your everyday performance and get you to your time or distance goals faster.
If you're focused on achieving a certain distance or time, then you need to be able to incorporate stamina training. And once you know the difference, you'll never forget, like riding a bicycle.
It's more than just emotionally satisfying
People who workout to the beat say they do it because they enjoy it more.
I don't do it because music distracts me from being fully body-aware. If you are like me, research says that we might be missing out.
So what's the deal with music and workouts - are the majority who listen the smart ones, and crushing their results thanks to their earbuds?
If you're wanting to share some of the results of your gym time with your kids, and do it outside, I have some simple but challenging exercises for you.
My ten-year-old daughter announced that she was going to enter the school cross-country, and asked me to train her.
I was thrilled to have the opportunity to do something outside with her and something physically challenging.
Here's the little program I made for our training. You'll find it fun to do outside with your kids, or just to do something different outside, which will challenge you. These exercises are simple, require no equipment, but give you a whole-body workout, and a good burst of cardio.
Since I was diagnosed at 50 with Type 2 diabetes I've been learning how to do bone-building fitness training which lowers my age. You can too. It's your choice. Walter