12 Reasons Why We Run

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Running… it can make your lungs burn and muscles ache, it causes countless blisters, bloody chaffing, and black toe nails. Then why do we run? I have heard this question countless times. While running may be punishment for some, for others it opens up a whole new way of living. To be able to move our bodies through good times and bad is a blessing. It can heal the mind and body and bring so much goodness to your life. Here are some reasons for “Why We Run.”

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1. It’s mind cleansing- After a while running isn’t so labor intensive and you are able to go out at a comfortable, conversational pace without gasping for air. When this happens, you get into a groove, you start focusing on your breath and your foot strike, and it becomes a moving meditation. You are able to let go of worries, thoughts, and concerns. Have you ever tried a sitting meditation? Most of us runners are able to sit for about 45 seconds before we can’t take it anymore. Running allows you to let go of thoughts without much effort. (I know that seems odd, because the act of running takes effort, but for many, not thinking is more difficult than moving our bodies).

2. Time for ourselves- In a world where we are constantly surrounded by people, running allows us quiet time by ourselves, free of chatter or having to serve someone else. It is where we recharge our souls.

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3. Time with friends- Running allows us time to connect with fellow runners. We share a passion. Whether you’re young, old, large, medium or small, we understand one another, we’re a tribe. Something happens when you go out running together. For some reason, everyone opens themselves up like a book. No one judges, and what is talked about on a run stays on that run.. you’re safe.

4. It’s free and it’s outside- Other than a pair of shoes, running is free. You don’t need to drive anywhere if you don’t want to and it’s outside where we belong (we spend our lives indoors and that sucks the spirit out of us). We weren’t designed to be enclosed.

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5. It teaches us to keep moving forward- Running teaches you how to keep moving forward, especially in the most painful moments. Life can be difficult and uncomfortable, running helps us realize that it’s just discomfort, it won’t kill you and eventually it will be over. You learn how to hang on.

6. Delayed Gratification – Everything about our sport takes time. You don’t get faster overnight, it takes commitment and sacrifice. You learn that the little things you do every day add up to big successes. You begin to use that lesson in other areas of your life. You apply it to your diet, your parenting, your relationships, your job.

7. It makes you feel good inside and out- Running produces an endorphin rush. I’ve heard it said you have to run over an hour to get the rush, but I’ve experienced it on runs as short as a half hour. Who doesn’t love a free, all natural drug delivered straight from heaven? It also has another great side effect… you fit into jeans.

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8. It helps you to get your priorities straight- Many times in our lives we make excuses. “Well, I can’t run because it’s raining, or I don’t have time, I need to clean my house, volunteer at the school, my job is very demanding.” All excuses! What you’re really saying is that it’s not a priority. If it means something to you, which it should because it’s something you do for yourself, than you find a way. Wake up early, leave your house messy for a few days, or run at night after your kids go to bed. In the words of Diana Nyad “Find a way”.

9. It’s good for your self esteem – Anyone can run. Running is not about being the fastest or the greatest. Whether you run a mile in 5 minutes or 15, getting across the finish line and completing your run is a huge achievement and it feels good! Races are not necessary, but can be a lot of fun. They bring camaraderie, and great memory makers. This is a wonderful race series right HERE.

10. For a cause- Many times we have no idea how to help a family member or friend in need. When a loved one is in pain or suffering, doing something difficult in their honor eases our pain and helps them at the same time. This is a cause close to my heart right HERE.

11. It’s very healing-If you are in any kind of emotional pain, it helps. When you’re out on a run all by yourself, you are free to cry and no one will see (many times running brings this on naturally). If you are carrying a lot of anger, running is a place for you to get really pissed off free of judgement. If you’re a recovering food, drug, alcohol or shopping addict, it will help you get through those times of weakness. Running heals, I don’t know how or why, but it does.

12. Resilience- Runners are used to failing. Oftentimes we don’t meet our goals, have a bad run, or get injured. We’re used to failing and we learn to pick ourselves up and keep trying.

Why do you run?

What’s stopping you?

This was part of a paid campaign with FitFluential LLC and Women’s Running Series, all opinions are my own.

If you register for the Women’s Running Series in Scottsdale use code FITAZLISA for $10.00 off.

Always consult with a doctor before starting a new exercise program.

About Lisa

Mother of three children under 8, including a set of twins, and wife of US Navy Diver. I love to run, write, and laugh. Yes, I have a slightly raunchy and dark sense of humor..life can be so funny.. it's how I deal with it all.

Comments

  1. It is so therapeutic….I realized this so much more after I got my running mojo back.

  2. OH
    number six? This nonrunner hadnt considered that before!

  3. Love these! Especially the washing machine one! I run to clear my head and get outside and move my body!

  4. I LOVE RUNNING! I know I’ll get back to it eventually so right now I’ll live vicariously through you! :) :)

  5. gosh, yes to all of them! number 4 and 11 and 1 and 10 and well… all!! <3

  6. Oh I love all of these! Running has taught me so much about myself, things I never knew. I run because it makes me feel more confident, strong, beautiful.

  7. Yep and yep to all of these! Running gives me back way more than I put into it, and I put a lot into it. Don’t know what I’d do without it!

  8. It’s definitely cheaper than therapy! I love running to catch up with friends sometimes and others to just be with myself for sure!

  9. All of these- you nailed it! Especially the therapeutic affects and how energized I am for the rest of my day. Plus, I might be addicted. :)

  10. All of these but I run specifically so I can see how far I can push myself and my body!

  11. LOVE LOVE LOVE!!! I could not agree more!

  12. Great list !!
    I started loving to run because I wanted alone time, now I run to socialize :)

  13. Right now I am running to relieve my stress. It’s definitely the best therapy that I need right now as I am sure that you can understand. I love my running family. They are my team and my other soul mates because they understand why running is important. This is a fantastic post. Thank you so much for sharing!

  14. These are all awesome!!

    I wish I could run right now, but I’m excited to get some runs in again once baby girl is born (soon!) :) This is a post I will need for then. Love it!

  15. So true. #11 stands out to me. I know so many people recovering or recovered from illness and addiction that have discovered healing through running.Plus it allows those of us with addictive personalities to use them for good instead of evil :-)

  16. YES! Love these. I never, ever thought I would find something that would change my life as much as running has. It’s SO much more than a sport…it has taught me so much about myself, and life in general. :)

  17. I agree with all of these! For me it’s a great way to get rid of negative energy which my family is very happy about;)

  18. I run for all those reasons. I love the community and how it is incredibly welcoming, inspiring and supportive.

  19. All of the reasons you listed, it’s my time and it is healing inside and out. ♥

  20. YES! YES! YES! to all the above. Since I’ve started to run more”seriously” my self esteem has gotten much better. I’m more confident in what I can do and achieve. Plus, the running community is just plain awesome!

  21. Love this! Agree x 12!

  22. Honest – never have been in love with running but been doing it for many years & always a challenge for me! :)

  23. I’ve have had people ask me what I am running “from,” as if running was some sort of way to mask some sort of bad feelings or past trauma. I run because it’s what I do, when I don’t want to do it any more, I won’t. If gives me self-confidence, makes me proud of what my body can do and keeps me healthy.

  24. Great post — I agree with everything and would add that it is during runs that I also get my best ideas. My mind lets go of constraints and my most creative thoughts and, for me, plot twists, come from those middling miles. I”ll admit — after about 15 miles I start to forget them — I’ve learned that :) But what a powerful tool running is for body, mind and soul. Thanks!

  25. I run cause’ it makes me feel freedom, strength, and happiness. I have been begging to run lately, but my coach and mom wont let me because I have an injury. I LOVE TO RUN!!!!!!!!

  26. Where can I find a bracelet like that one?? :)

Trackbacks

  1. […] 12 Reasons Why We Run As runners, we are often asked, “Why do you run?” Sometimes is a good natured question. Sometimes the question might be marked with a big of sarcasm and lack of understanding. Lisa from Run Wiki lays out 12 reason why we run. I loved all of the reasons – more so right now since it’s been about two months since I last run, but my favorite is this - Running is the washing machine of the mind. […]

  2. […]  Christine linked to 12 Reasons Why We Run in her own weekly round up, and as a long-time runner, I was nodding in agreement from start […]

  3. […] Wiki, 12 Reasons Why We Run. Those of us who run pretty much know why we love it, but it’s fun to read Lisa’s list […]

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