I’ve been running for a few years now. To me, it is the perfect sport because it is infinitely flexible, always convenient and requires no special skills or equipment. ┬áReally, it can be whatever you want it to be:

  • a way to help with weight loss
  • an avenue for mental release from the stresses of the day
  • a competitive tool to test and push physical limits

 

Running has changed my life and I believe it has the power to change that of others as well, but this requires great preparation and consistency because, like most things in life, you only reap the benefits of the efforts you sow.

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My running journey started about 7 years ago, during my final year at University. A friend of mine was very much interested in participating in the Bupa 10km charity race, which holds annually in London. However, at that time in my life, as much as I tried to be healthy and exercise regularly, I found myself stress-eating quite a bit in order to cope with the pressure of university coursework and assignments as well as job applications. So when my friend brought up the idea of this race, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to train and get fit, with the added benefit of raising funds for a charity of my choice.

 

So my friend and I went ahead to register for the race and started training. We tried to stay dedicated to a schedule; sometimes, I even slept over at her apartment so that we would both wake up early enough for a run the following morning.

 

We continued to train for a while, but by the time our exams drew nearer, it became challenging to coordinate our schedules because we took different courses. So I started to worry about losing momentum when we stopped running together. However, to my surprise throughout the revision period and exams, working out at the gym and going on regular runs on my own became an integral part of my schedule. On one morning of my exams, I ran into a friend at the gym and she was surprised that I found the time for a quick workout before my 10 am paper.

 

What started out as training for a charity race turned out to have yet another advantage….I excelled in my exams. How:

  • Because I knew I had a to combine my training and exam schedules, I was extremely organised with time
  • The release of endorphins during my running sessions helped suppress exam stress
  • I started eating a lot healthier and shed a few pounds. So I looked good and therefore felt great!

 

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The race finally came up about a week after my final paper, and my friend and I were fully prepared. We completed 10km in less than an hour and it was such a great feeling to have achieved this, raised money for charity, become healthier and excelled in my exams. Till date, I would not trade anything for that feeling.

Ever since that summer, I have not stopped running and therefore have not stopped reaping the benefits; and no matter what part of the world I find myself, I find a park or make my own running route.

 

If you don’t already do so, it is not too late to start running. You can start TODAY! But take note of the following tips that would help enhance your experience:

  • Eliminate all your excuses and just get on with it
  • Clean up your diet
  • Get an awesome playlist with music that would keep you motivated
  • Be persistent (set a weekly target)
  • Start slow
  • Listen to your body
  • Get a good pair of running shoes to suit your body, shape of feet and terrain on which you run

 

Are you ready to run? Let’s go!

 

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