Spring is here, at least in most of the country, and with the warmer weather comes all kinds of extra demands on your time: yard work, cookouts, kids’ soccer games, etc. It’s easy to let your training slip at this time of year. I know that I often run more miles during the cold winter months than I do in the spring simply because there are no races on the schedule in the winter so I don’t have as many easy/recovery days.
But I’ve resolved not to let my mileage drop this spring, and have been putting in a lot of time on the roads and the trails the last couple of months. Still, even on the nicest days it’s sometimes hard to find the time or motivation to get out the door. So here are a few entirely random reasons you should go out and run today. Print them out and tape them to the fridge or the lawn mower or the mirror.
- Running makes you smarter. There is evidence that shows long distance runners have higher IQs, do better in school and earn higher incomes than non-runners. The thinking is that all of that time we spend out there running allows us to sort through problems and generally exercise our brains while we exercise our bodies. Of course, that assumes you’re thinking about something other than the bacon cheeseburger you’re going to have for lunch or whether Chris is going to end up whacking Tony on “The Sopranos.”
- Running is better than sex. Well, aerobically speaking, that is. An adult weighing 150 pounds will burn about 520 calories running for 40 minutes at about 7:30 pace. That same guy or gal will only burn 192 calories having sex for 40 minutes. Of course, there are a few side benefits to that kind of cross training, but that’s a discussion for another day. And probably another site.
- Running is just plain fun. As runners, we get the chance to have 45 minutes or an hour of uninterrupted fun just about every day. Think of it as the adult version of recess. No matter how miserable your day is, you can always lace up your shoes and go bang out 5 or 6 miles. And if it’s a really tough day, run twice. Nothing clears your head like a good two-a-day.
- Because you can. Next time you’re in a meeting or dinner party with 10 or 15 people, look around the room and ask yourself how many of those people could go out and run a mile without stopping. The answer is probably one or two, including you. Don’t take that for granted.